Monday, June 29, 2015

Chldren's Craft: Melted Crayon Butterflies

We already used melted crayons on rocks. When I saw these beautiful butterflies at Artbarblog  I knew we had to give it a try.

It was big fun last Saturday :-)

I printed out a simply butterfly pattern from the internet, which we folded in the middle (and unfolded it). 
First we had to peel of the paper wrappings from our crayons. After that was done, we used a simple sharpener to make crayon snippets, which we let drop on one side of the butterfly. The common rule "Less is more" can be applied here ;-) 
The paper was folded again and I covered it with a baking sheet additionally to prevent my electric iron from getting stained ;-)
It needed only a very short touch with the hot iron to let the crayon snippets melt....
We unfolded the paper immediately and let it dry.
The butterflies can than be cut out and be arranged on a larger piece of colored paper.

We use our melted crayon butterfly picture as seasonal decoration of our kitchen door :-)

Children's Arts: Painting like Morris Louis....

Using this great curriculum for children to explore famous artist, we took advantage of the brilliant weather and did some messy stuff outside in the garden ;-))

Since we are so fond of Helen Frankenthaler, the idea was to paint like Morris Louis and his way of color field paintings:
We taped heavy watercolor paper to some trays. The children applied spots of acrylic paint on one edge.
When the trays were put upright the paint already started to run down. To increase this process they repeatedly sprayed water on the paint.
The first round were not that successful, so we switched to tempera paint hoping that it would run more smoothly, which it did....

Resuming this experiment I would say, that it is a promising technique, which needs some improvement ;-)

In the evening I could not help and try the whole thing using liquid water colors.....;-)

Big relieve.....

A few weeks ago we found this mysterious thing while gardening, which we figured out in the internet was the cocoon of an owlet moth....
We prepared a jar following a instruction from the internet and placed the cocoon inside....we waited ever since and nothing seemed to happen....
When I started to worry that we damaged the poor little thing...all the sudden....a beautiful moth was sitting in the jar. :-)
After the wings were dried we released it, very relieved everything turned out to by alright ;-)

Friday, June 26, 2015

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Children's Art: Drawing in the sand

When I came to the school yesterday at noon to pick up our children, I found to very sweet little first grades sitting in the sand infront of the bicycle rack. They drew with their fingers in the sand and the regularity of the pattern caughted my eye.
When I asked them what they are doing, they told me, that they visited an art exhibition with their class that day and that they wanted to draw and make art themselves now.....
I simply love the idea, that children are so touched by art that they try it out themselves :-)

Friday, June 19, 2015


Even the cold and rainy weather we currently experience in Hamburg has its beautiful sides :-)

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Monday, June 15, 2015

Da Vinci in Hamburg/Germany

One afternoon last week we took the chance and visited an exhibition about the great Leonardo Da Vinci.

The exhibition was smaller than expected, but there were a very interesting section with decent models of Da Vincis mechanical inventions, which the children (and the adults) were allowed to try out.
Friedrich already had some experiences with the Da-Vinci-Bridge and both children picked up the ideas behind the other mechanical principals easily in a playful way. The insight that many of these inventions are still used on a daily basis like chain drive in a bicycles or pulleys, was definitely what they took home.

Other sections showed his live, his way of painting and investigating nature by drawing.

The exhibition gave us a good overview about live and meaning of this multitalented artist.

Children's Crafts: Multiplicity of grass

Walking in our neighborhood I suddenly realized how many different blades of grass one can find even on tiny spots next to the main traffic roads....

On our way home one evening we picked as many different as we could find and used the laminator to make sun catcher out of them :-)

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Children's Art: Homage to Joan Miró

A few weeks ago The children and I visited an excellent exhibition showing the fascinating work of the spanish artist Joan Miró.
The children were enchanted by the simplicity and clearness of Miró's colors and symbols.

Yesterday I asked them to draw pictures, trying to remember what they liked best about Miró's work. They were allowed to use my rather precious Senelier oil pastels...I figured out, by giving them of my material from time to time, they feel kind of honored and take their own art work more serious and important ;-)

While drawing we figured out, what the remember best is a series of illustrations Miró's made for "The Canticle of the Sun" by Saint Francis of Assisi.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Nydam Ship

Last weekend while anchoring in the Alssund, we took the dinghy to explore the surrounding.
A bit further up in Sottrupskov a rebuild Nydam-Ship can be seen.
Nydam-Ships were clinker build warships qualified for high sea travels. They were rowed by up to 36 men.
1863 just before the Danish-German war a Nydam-Ship from 320 AD was found in the area of Sottrup.

Ladybug larva

How are we supposed to see the beloved ladybug, if we do care for their larva? This morning Magdalena asked some boys before school not to wantonly step on this little one....good deed of the day ;-)


Yesterday came home from school enthusiastically talking about the handicrafts lessons.
They built a bridge completely supporting itself without any mounting material following an idea of the great Leonardo Da Vinci ...Over the whole afternoon and even this morning before breakfast he rebuilt this kind of bridge using popsicle worries anymore, if we would have to pass a  torrential river ;-)

Children's Art: Flowing Paint II

Yesterday we repeated this experimental use of paint with the Children Painting Group applying the method of Helen Frankenthaler.

Each child was allowed to chose 5 different colors of acrylic paint.
We had to thin this down a bit using 1:1 gesso and a tiny little bit of water.
After stirring the mixture carefully they were ready to pour it on the canvas.
Each child had 5 18x24cm size canvases to have a bit of space for experimentation.

It was very much fun and again a bit success seeing the children to work more freely and extremely concentrated.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Children's Art: Leave Prints

Last Friday we all the sudden had beautiful weather with 30°C...We rather spend our art time in the garden :-)

The children used acrylic paint and leaves they found in the garden to make some prints.
Later they got more experimental sticking leaves on the paper using paint or using parts of the newspapers I gave them to protect the grass a little from paint....

It was wonderful to paint under open sky, with nature in action with the whole body :-) We surely have to repeat and extent this ;-)

Friday, June 5, 2015

Children's Crafts: T-shirt print

This summer the children love to design their own T-shirts.
For this one we did leave prints using textile color. The result at first is very nice. I like the pattern of the print very much. It is just that after the first round of washing the color faded (which let some tears appear :-( ) and we have to re-think our fixing technique....;-)

Children's Craft: A new round of sun catcher...

A while ago we made sun catcher by painting with acrylic paint on acrylic glass plates. It was a fun thing to do and for the first time, the results seem to be ok, but I was not quite satisfied.
Magdalena and I tried it again yesterday using Sharpies for outlining and filling the fields this time. It was much easier to handle and the results is more convincing to me....

Children's Art: Another Black Board Picture

This time it was Friedrich's turn to draw on the new black board.
On the first sight this piece might not seem too special. But I like it for some reasons:
First it works like I wished, that in betweens they use this board to do a little sketching.
Second, I saw that he carefully chosen what magnetic parts to use.
And third, the them is the Flood, which is topic of a book presentation he is going to do in a few at school. I like the idea that the children uses drawing/art making to think about stuff they are engaged with in whatever other way.

Orange Ladybug

The other day I found an orange ladybug at our porch.
Cute little thing and completely new to us, since I can not recall that I ever saw one before.
So we asked the internet and found out that it's name is Halyzia sedecimguttata and the favorite food is mildew....Lucky us, because one of our roses is suffering severely from this plant infection.
We kindly asked our new little friend to stay for dinner ;-)

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Horse Chestnut

Their candle like blossoms are almost gone, but I still feel the joy when looking down a street full of horse chestnut.
It is a foretaste of autumn when I will have to bend down every few step to pick up their beautiful fruits ;-)

Children's art: Black board

Where we lived before, when the kids were little we used to have a big black board in the hallway for them to draw on. We prepared it ourself using magnetic color first and blackboard color on top of it.

In this house, where we live now, there is not enough free wall to do such a large black board, but since I had some colors left from the first time, we painted a small wood panel.
In addition we prepared some magnetic parts, by doing pencil drawings, laminate and cut out them and putting some sticking magnets on the back....

The children love to play around with it and I guess some projects may come up using this board :-)

Monday, June 1, 2015

Children's Art: Group painting on one large canvas

I am tremendously proud of the little children painting group, which meets every Monday at our house....

Two weeks ago we did kind of experimental project.
I put ONE large (200 x 90 cm) canvas on our table and provided them with all the different hues they mixed the week before in acrylic paint.
At first they were rather shocked by this huge white surface and seemed a little shy to start.
They decided that everyone should striktly work for themselves....but it took one like one and a half minute and they were all in this together.

We made only one rule before, that nobody should paint over the painting of anyone else without explicit permission.

All kids were great: They worked for one and a half hour and the only thing they talked about was their current painting. They came to agreements, worked together, developed the picture together. The only thing I had to do, was to provide enough paint....

Today we had a little vernissage for the families.
I hang the picture at the wall at our driveway. We had some soft drinks and nice snacks and the children seemed all very proud of what they had accomplished :-)
As I said before, I am tremendously proud of them :-))