Color and Composition
by Brenda Ellis
This book provides students with an in-depth look at the color wheel, as it applies to the medium of pastels, through a simply written text designed to engage students in the creative process. Students produce original artworks and are delighted when asked to choose the subject matter for each color pastel work. Middle school students can begin this book without prior knowledge of art and work independently without the need for parental instruction. The organized content and conversational tone is perfectly suited to the age level of the sixth, seventh, or eighth grade student. The book offers challenging assignments that are equally engaging for both the novice and the more experienced art student. The unique feature of the book is the way students learn from its pages, then choose a subject from their own environment, and easily apply the new information to their own art. Within each unit, students focus on one topic in four unique ways.
Students think creatively as they learn to use the color wheel and explore their world in an engaging study designed to strengthen observation skills. Art appreciation lessons show how color is used through the study of master artworks by Caillebotte, Gauguin, Degas, and others. Students gain insight by looking at art from countries around the world including many pastel works by European Impressionists, plus works from Mexico, Celtic tribes, and more. Techniques such as blending, hatching, frottage, and working on colored paper are covered in units that examine topics like primary and secondary color use, neutral colors, analogous colors, as well as compositional topics of rhythm, points of view, and emphasis. Four special assignments show how elements combine when using pastels. Technique and application pages allow skills to develop naturally as students work independently. The book provides lessons for the completion of sixty-eight colored pastel drawings that are original and entirely the student’s own.
Age 11 and up.