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Crayons are still the best invention

May 1, 2014

So we have a zillion old crayons collected over the years. We have come to prefer the Twistables for our coloring projects, but I just can’t bring myself to throw them away. I was quite happy to ask the kids to bring them out their craft closet hiding place.

I have been on pinterest a lot these last few days trying to get some ideas for a series of art classes I’ll be teaching this next year. Although, I don’t plan to do this one, it made for a great afternoon project. Who wouldn’t love an art class that uses fire, right?!

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The kids were unfamiliar with the concept of pointilism. It was a great skill and act of patience to create their pictures one melted crayon wax drop at a time.

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I resized coloring pages from the internet to fit our smaller 5×7″ canvas size. I especially love these canvases from JoAnn. When you purchase them at 50%, they are seriously cheap and come in a set of 3. Perfect for my little artists and my budget. Simply take your printed design, turn it over to the back and using a graphite pencil, shade over the outline of the image. You have now created your own graphite paper and can trace the design onto your canvas. I would encourage you to keep your marks light. However, I also wonder if it would have been better to have traced Michael’s image with a sharpie giving a definitive line for wax droppings. I’m not sure.

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I didn’t tell the kids what we’d be making, but I asked them to consider a simple design from nature or a cartoon. I assumed that whatever they chose, I’d be able to find an image without an excess of detail. Of course, they’d both pick a cartoon with detail and small features. Phineas and Ferb it is. Katie chose Candace, the older sister and Michael chose Ferb. (Clare calls him Ferv.) Candace and Phineas are siblings for those unfamiliar with this Disney cartoon. It really is a cute show and plays quite frequently in our house. It’s one that even daddy will agree to watch.

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Although, it took Michael a little longer to learn to control his wax drops, his Phineas turned out great I thought. Katie loved this project so much she immediately asked if she could make another one. I thought for sure after spending almost 2 hours on their project, they’d be climbing the walls ready to be done. I consider that an afternoon win for mommy!

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As luck would have it, a friend was schooling here today. We had made plans to attend a board game event this afternoon that was cancelled at the last minute so the kids had a free afternoon. Perfect reason to gather them in the kitchen while I work nearby. Didn’t her flower turn out great? I love the color combinations.

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Elizabeth wasn’t going to be left out either. Clare had been coloring this picture when Elizabeth figured out how to move the chairs away from the table and climb up herself. She then, of course, insisted that she get to hold some crayons. Instead of eating them, which I expected, she leaned over to color on Clare’s paper. Even after giving her a clean sheet for herself, she still preferred Clare’s. Thankfully, Clare didn’t mind sharing! She looks so proud of herself, doesn’t she? (As an aside, I will now be stacking the chairs on the table top out of reach of little miss.)

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Certain she was missing out on the real fun at the other end of the table, she managed to scoot herself and get closer to the real action.

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It felt good to be creating again. We prepped another quick project for tomorrow morning. Hopefully, it will turn out well and I can post another successful project tomorrow. Clare will make this one with us. I am not overly fond of oil pastels so I’m a bit apprehensive. However, Pinterest convinced me it was a cool idea.

What would I do without Pinterest, seriously?! Have you fallen into the addiction too? Really, though, I love that it motivates me to get in the kitchen at meal time and create new things and inspire my kids to create themselves. What have you made this week? You can find me HERE if you want to follow someone with quite the eclectic range of boards.

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