Art Classes: Level I

Lesson I-12: The Umbrella From Thailand


Using a paint brush to create textures


Art Lesson Description:

The storefront of the Borsang Umbrella Factory in Chiang Mai, Thailand, is a treasure that's filled with colorful lanterns, mulberry paper, fans, collapsible hats, and, of course, umbrellas. This lesson features one of the umbrellas painted at the factory.

We use the umbrella as a way to help students think about and experiment with texture.  The lesson comes in three steps.

  • We begin by collecting textures - textures that we can feel, as well as visual textures that are made of similar elements placed close together.
  • Then we make a texture chart by translating the textures we have found into paint strokes. This is a perfect time for students to discover what kinds of strokes they can make with their brush.
  • Last of all, students use the textures they have invented to create the design for an umbrella, in imitation of the umbrella from Thailand.

Each of the three parts involve discovery and experimentation (Each step will take students 30-45 minutes), and it’s best not to rush the process, so it’s probably best to plan to do the lesson at three separate times, especially with younger students.

The idea for a texture chart comes from Kathy Weisman Topal’s book, Children and Painting. We recommend the book as a resource for learning more about painting.

THIS LESSON CAN BE VIEWED IN POWERPOINT AND VIDEO FORMAT


List of Supplies for Each Student:

  • Two or more watercolor brushes, one round and one flat
  • A pencil
  • 1 sheet of newsprint 18” x 24” or 2 sheets of drawing paper
  • 1 sheet of watercolor paper
  • A paint palette
  • A bottle of water for rinsing brushes
  • 3-5 colors of acrylic or tempera paint, plus white
  • Masking tape
  • A drawing board to tape your paper onto

Suggestions for Cross-Curricular Connections


Approximate Time to Complete the Art Class

  • Collecting textures: 30 minutes
  • Painting the texture chart: 45 minutes
  • Painting the final project: 45 minutes

 


Texture collection example
Texture collection example
Texture chart
Texture chart
Finished Art Lesson
Finished Art Lesson

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