Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Elements and Principles of Design

Normally this is the first thing I do with my students.  This semester we had a museum exhibit deadline that took precedence, but that's what being flexible is all about!!  Anyways...

I like to go over the elements and principles of design with every grade level, every year.  I feel like its a great review and introduction to the basics of art.  It's the foundation- everyone needs to know this stuff to create beautiful art!!  And it also helps you sound extremely well educated to be able to talk about art in an intelligent manner :)

So, we started off by taking notes on the elements and principles.  And because I am so nice, I created some handouts (based off of some ones I saw on teachers pay teachers.  I am too cheap to buy them though, so I made my own!).  The students used the handouts to take their notes on while I lectured.

After completing their notes we made accordian books (I found the inspiration for this project here).  First we cut long strips of watercolor paper (you could use any heavy weight paper- I just happened to have really large sheets lying around perfect for cutting into strips).  My strips were about 39 x 4".

We then accordion folded them into little booklets with 8 "pages".

First we folded the strips in half

Then we folded the ends into the middle 

Next we folded each section in half 

Then we made sure they folded like an accordion! 

We started with the elements- they decorated a cover page.  The only requirement was that it had to say "Elements of Art" and include their name.  They then went along one page at a time creating a page for each element.  Each page had to list the element, it's definition, and then it had to be illustrated in some way.  Here's some examples

Once we finished the elements, we flipped the book over to the back and did the same thing for the principles.

Here's some finished examples!

I think they turned out great :)

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