If you ask kids about drawing a flower most will be able to draw a cartoon-y flower pretty confidently. Flowers are made up of simple shapes and are something many kids include in their drawings. Use these directed drawing tips to take flower drawings from simple to colorful, complex drawings that will even impress the artists themselves!
Drawing a flower 101….
I use these black Sharpies for everything and let my kids use them too. Introduce them as a special and adult art supply and your kids will treat them as such! Start by instructing your kiddos to draw a variety of sizes of circles all across the paper. Aim for about the half way line, circles above and below.
Use your markers to draw another circle around each circle so they are double decker circles. Vary line thickness by tracing over some lines more than once.
Directed drawing step two….
Inside each circle instruct kids to draw some kind of flower shape. This step is kind of the “typical cartoon” flower they might draw without instruction. The goal is for each flower to be a little different. Suggest using a variety of straight and curvy lines to help create that variety.
Directed drawing step three….
Add a border to each flower. Outside the two concentric circles we started with add a design to each flower. These can be as simple as lines, dots, dashes, triangles, rectangles. It’s fun to show kids a design that seems super complicated and help them see how it breaks down into a series of simple lines or shapes that are repeated. If kids get stuck on this step of their flower drawing suggest they mimic the shapes inside the flower and repeat them on the outside.
Drawing a flower with foliage…
Add simple stems by adding two straight lines. These are big flowers and they need sturdy stems to hold them up, right? Leaves are a simple football shape. The leaves that are lowest on the page will be in front, closest to the viewer. Leaves in the back are overlapped by leaves in the front. Make a mistake? Make it a doodle that is part of the design.
Encourage kids to trace over lines to vary the thickness to add interest.
Adding color, beautiful color, to your directed drawing…..
This technique of adding color to your flower drawing is both quick and easy and so darn pretty. Use plain old watercolor washable markers, think Crayola markers. This paint with markers technique is just one of my favorites. All you want to do here is add super simple dashes of color with marker. Leave white areas and don’t worry about being precise.
Use a soft brush and add a little plain water over the markered areas. The color will follow the water and spread.
Drawing a flower wasn’t so hard….
What I love about these directed drawings is that it takes the scrainess out of drawing. A kid doesn’t have to think about all the pieces and parts and filling the entire paper. Directed drawing means one step at a time which can be a game changer for a lot of kids.
I also love the fact that directed drawing takes a complex subject and breaks it down into a series of recognizable parts. The point isn’t necessarily to get really good at following directions but to help kids see that even complex things can be drawn by looking at them as simpler shapes that make them up.
That’s it. This is an easy, one sitting lesson that will give kids some ideas and skills they are sure to be able to apply to their future projects!