This mixed media winter collage provides experience with watercolor techniques, tearing, cutting, gluing, and printmaking. Layering all of these processes into one artwork creates a finished artwork that looks more sophisticated than any of the simple parts of which it’s made!
Follow along these simple steps. Apply them to create a winter collage as we did or use the same techniques and create from your own mind and heart!
What exactly is a medium….
The word (or words) of the day are “mixed media.” In art class the “medium” is whatever you are using to make your artwork. Mixed media is just a fancy way of saying that there is more than one art material involved.
There are a couple of reasons I love mixed media projects like this winter collage project.
One, it exposes your student to several processes and materials. To me one of the most important aspects of art education is to expose kids to a wide variety of materials and techniques. Try a lot of things.
Two, combining new and different parts together is how all innovative things are made. Whether it’s art or engineering encouraging kids to think outside the box about how they use everyday materials is good practice.
The pretty paper….
We started this lesson with a handful of awesome textured watercolor paper from a previous lesson. See this post on watercolor techniques if you want to give it a try.
All you need are some pan watercolors, like the classic Crayola ones, and some household basics like salt and wax paper.
We painted on watercolor paper which helps create the awesome white edge we make later in this collage lesson.
As always my mantra is “Use what you have.” If you don’t have time to watercolor today but would like to try the rest of the lesson, make it work. Scrounge for past artwork that your child is no longer attached to, or use newsprint, magazine pages, scrapbook paper, patterned tissue paper, or anything you’ve got!
For this winter collage project we used one interesting paper for the snow, one for the trees, and anchored it all on a black background.
Tear strips of paper to become the ground. If the paper you’re working with is on the heavy side you’ll get an awesome white edge that’s perfect for snow.
Glue the layers of snow down, one on top of another. Not all strips have to stretch from one edge to another.
I love the contrast of ripped, imperfect edges, and sharp, scissored edges. Use your second color of paper to create trees.
We snipped simple triangular trees but feel free to get as fancy as you want.
Tuck them into the layers of snow. Depending on the age of your kiddo you might talk about how trees that are close will appear larger than trees that are far away.
Add some printmaking….
I love printmaking. It’s my fave and I add it anywhere I can.
This part is easy but oh so easy and kids will love it. Dip the edge of a small scrap of cardboard into white paint.
Print it on the black background once, twice, three times to create a “snowflake” shape.
This collage lesson combines multiple elements to make a winter scene. I love giving the parameters above as guidelines, suggestions. Kids will have their own ideas and that’s okay! Actually it’s better than okay- encourage it!
Don’t let these ideas limit you. Try this lesson and see where it leads you!
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