Our fourth meeting of the year was also our first field trip. We went to Canvas Crashers, a local social painting studio, so the girls could complete the first two steps of the Painting Badge.
The owner of the studio talked about his art – what he does, why he makes art, and why he likes to teach others how to make art.
The girls painted a tree in autumn for their still life. I’m sure that this was bending the rules a bit as they didn’t painted from a picture of a tree instead of an actual tree, but they had fun with it. I liked seeing how different their paintings were even though they all painted the same thing.
Fresh back from our trip to Virginia, my troop had a field trip to the Castellani Art Museum. We signed up for their weekly Art Express program ahead of time, the instructor knowing we had Brownies wanting to earn their Painting Badge. Van Gogh was the theme, so all activities were centered around his Sunflowers painting.
The instructor started off the program by giving the girls a tour of the art museum, then read a picture book to set the theme – Camille and the Sunflowers by Laurence Anholt.
The girls spent the rest of the program painting their own version of Sunflowers using several different techniques and mediums. Paint for the flowers, white crayons to create a resist for the vase, and markers to add stems/leaves and the background.
1. Get inspired
—> Go to an art show or museum. We went to the Castellani Art Museum for a Saturday afternoon art workshop. Before the workshop started, the artist in charge took the girls on a brief tour of the museum.
2. Paint the real world
—> Paint a portrait of a friend, family member, pet, or yourself. Coincidentally, the workshop we attended focused on pets. The girls either brought a photo with them or chose some the artist provided. They sketched the photos onto newsprint, then re-drew and painted them on heavier white paper.
3. Paint a mood
—>My assistant leader (AL) was in charge of this step, and it was done at a meeting I was not at. She showed the girls several pieces of abstract art that showed different moods. The girls had to say what mood they thought the paintings represented and why they thought that. Then they painted their own abstract picture focusing on one emotion (happy, sad, mad, etc…). My AL wanted the girls to focus on lines and colors instead of concrete objects. Once the girls were finished, they had to guess what mood each others paintings represented.
4. Paint without brushes
—> My assistant leader (AL) was in charge of this step, and it was done at a meeting I was not at. She showed the girls pictures by Pollack and Seurat and had them make pictures copying their styles. She also brought in various items so the girls could make prints.
5. Paint a mural
—> Paint a mural about your Girl Scout fun. The girls paired up to paint panels for our mural. Each panel was an approximately 2’x3′ piece of butcher paper. The teams had to decide what to paint and how to divvy up who paints what. The girls ended up choosing to paint a camping scene and an aquarium overnight scene respectively. The two girls who missed the meeting will paint a picture on their own to be added into our mural.
**Alternatively, you could have each girl paint their own picture on a normal paper-sized piece of card stock, punch holes in it, and string some ribbon through them to make a banner.