Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Stringing along - string painting part 1

This year we're exploring little themes in painting. I haven't really planned it that way but once one material is in the paint caddy it's easy just to keep going. It has been interesting to explore similar tasks over several days. I'm also hoping as the year progresses Rainbow will start doing the "I wonder what would happen if..." thinking along with me.

Recently Rainbow and I have been painting with strings. I'll share the four activities over two posts as I'm a photo short of one activity.

For all of these activities we used poster paint and wool. Other textiles would be great to explore.

String Painting

This is basically using string as a paint tool. Dip the length of wool in a tub of paint. I like to squish it around with my finger to cover it in paint.

Some ideas
    • lie the wool down in a design and then lift it up.

    • rapidly splat the wool up and down.

              • rapidly fling the wool over your shoulder onto the page (Warning: this is very messy and very fun. A similar activity is in this splatter painting post) My three year old found the over arm movement quite challenging.

                String Stretched Butterflies

                  One of Rainbow's favourite art activity is making paint butterflies. You know the ones where you put splats of paint on one half of a page then fold it in half. When you open it you have a symmetrical painting that often resemble butterflies. Well this is a variation.

                  1. Prefold the paper.

                  2. Spoon or squirt some paint on one side, close to the fold line.

                  3. Lie several pieces of string on the page so that both ends hang over the edge and the middle of the strings lies between the paint and the fold line.
                  3. Fold the paper over. Don't press down just yet.
                  4. Get a friend (or Mum) to hold the paper closed as you grab the two ends of the string. (Make sure you grab the ends of the same piece). Slowly pull both ends towards you. Repeat for each string.
                  5. Open up and check it out.

                  Here's another one with different wool positioning.

                  The dragged paint almost gives the butterfly movement. I'll show you a little project using these paintings soon.


                1. These look like lots of fun. Just this evening I read about another cool string project but I'll wait till part 2 to see if you are doing it before I describe it... :-) I love it that it is clearly so warm that Rainbow can do art with few clothes on. Although things are gradually warming up here it's still on 4-5 degrees during the day and there's a very cold wind!

                2. Hi Zoe,

                  You've intrigued me. I wonder what yours is.

                  I'm umming and ahhing about those 'top-less' photoes but yes somedays it's too hot to wear the plastic paint smock. Our kitchen gets the morning sun.

                  4 degrees would be a very cold winters minimum. Even in winter our days are in the mid to high teens.

                3. I promise I'll describe on your next string post if you don't beat me to it!

                  Oh yes, the dilemma about photos of one's children... I find this one so difficult too. But part of me doesn't want to give it to the "there are nasty people everywhere" assumption. It can be difficult for me to balance that along side being sensible and reluctantly acknowledging that not everyone is as innocent as I'd like them to be.