Lesson 2 of 10
Left-Brain / Right-Brain Fun
by Debi West
My art II students learn so much through their first portrait drawing lesson, as seen in article #1, so from this lesson I move them into another great one that has them better understanding the importance of drawing symmetrically and then opens them up to being as creative as possible.
I use Betty Edward’s book, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain for inspiration and I tell my students that this book is a wonderful tool to own. Although I don’t require my students to purchase the book, many do as they see this as a means to improving their work.
We use the worksheets found in the book and practice drawing the vase depending on whether they are left- or right-handed. We discuss contour line, we discuss shape, and we discuss the necessity of drawing a vase—or any item—that is the same on both sides, slowly and with a lot of concentration. Most find this to be a challenge, but a good challenge that slows them down and has them thinking.
Once the drawings of their vases are complete and they are satisfied with their results, I give them two days to turn the vase into something creative! I don’t really give them too many parameters, so I open the lesson up to any media, any backing and any theme they desire … and the results are AMAZING!
This is when they really begin to comprehend the importance of merging the technical skills with the creative skills that can take their art to the next level. This is a relatively short lesson but I find that it’s critical in the yearlong series of upcoming lessons and prepares them for success.
Up Next: Creating in Charcoal!
click here for resources related to this article
Debi West, Ed.S, NBCT, is Art Department Chair at North Gwinnett High School in Suwanee, Georgia. She is also an Arts & Activities Contributing Editor.