Friday, May 8, 2015

Laurel Burch Cats

Third Grade Art
4 Class Periods

*  This is a new spin on an old lesson.  To see the older lesson click here: Burch Cats
Laurel Burch Cats, Third Grade Art Lesson

About the Artist:
Laurel Burch was born December 31, 1945 in San Fernando Valley, CA.  She supported herself by being a nanny. During her free time she would visit the junk yards and take any scrap metal she could find.  She created necklaces and earrings from the metal that she found.  It was her jewelry creations that gave her start in the art world. 

Soon she found herself painting flowers, mythical animals and cats (which she is most famous for) as well as creating jewelry.

By the 1990's she licensed her designs to dozens of companies worldwide.  Today you can find her jewelry and art prints everywhere!  Her designs are printed on sweatshirts, pillows, bags, notebooks, wrapping paper and so much more!  Just keep your eyes open. You never know where you might find a Laurel Burch creation.

The artist died September 13, 2007 due to a complication from a painful bone disease (ostepetrosis) she struggled with her whole life.  Although she had many hardships with the disease she spent most of her life upbeat, positive and overall thankful that she had greatest job in the whole wide world, being an artist.  She was only 61 years old when she passed. 

Day 1:
1.  As a class we discussed the life and artwork of Laurel Burch.
2.  Together, students drew a Laurel Burch cat through follow along demonstration.  As students drew we discussed the characteristics of a Laurel Burch cat:  eyebrow/nose swoop (continuous line), patterns and designs, bold bright colors and gold paint details.

Day 2:
1.  Students used this class period to place a design/pattern with each cat in the composition.  
2.  Pieces were then outlined with a sharpie marker.

Day 3:
1.  Using tempera paint and a sponge, students sponge painted the background of the composition.
Sponge painting the background.

2.  Watercolor pencils were used to color the cats.  
Coloring with watercolor pencils.
Day 4:
1.  Students that needed to finish coloring their cats with watercolor pencils did so.
2.  Water was then painted over the pencil to create the watercolor appearance.
3.  Students were given a choice of highlighting areas of the composition with gold or silver paint.
Using paint to add gold details.

Student Examples: