Mixed Media Skills Lab
Mixed Media Skills Lab
The color wheel can also be divided into warm and cool colors. Color sets the atmosphere, or mood, in a painting. It describes emotions best. Warm colors, such as red, yellow, and orange, are bright and come forward to meet our eye. If you want something to stand out, use warm colors. Cool colors, such as blue, violet, and green, are more calming. They can also appear to recede. Using both creates depth in a painting.
Bright, colorful and highly appealing, the six-volume hands-on “Art Skills Lab” series encourages readers to unleash their creativity and try a variety of visual art media. Each title explains the elements of design (line, shape, texture, pattern and composition) as they pertain to the featured art form and profiles famous artists and their works as examples. Topics also include a brief history of the specific art form, the color wheel (warm versus cool colors, complementary colors, and tints and shades), materials and techniques. There are step-by-step instructions for 11 hands-on activities in each title as well as text boxes with additional information, tips, and ideas for extending the creative process. The authors encourage readers to examine works of art and to bring that awareness to their own creations. For the home artist, the projects require an initial outlay of money for supplies, especially for items such as watercolor paint, brushes, cheesecloth, brayers, etc., but many of the supplies can be purchased for little cost at dollar stores. Teachers would find this series useful as teaching tools for art lessons in the classroom. Abundant color photographs, not only accompany each of the steps in a project, but also showcase real life works of art. A table of contents, a glossary, an index and a list of books and web sites for more ideas and copyright-free images are included.
Mixed Media Skills Lab furthers readers’ understanding of art as an expression of mood or theme through the use of color, texture and symbols. The Rule of Odds, having an odd number of items in one’s composition for a more pleasing effect, is also discussed. Though some of the techniques presented (assemblage, mosaics, and geometric abstract art, for instance) are similar to those in other titles in the series, the projects are different. Budding artists can create scratch art, image transfers and layered art, to name a few.
Interesting, educational and fun, the “Art Skills Lab” series is well worthy of purchase.
Gail Hamilton is a former teacher-librarian in Winnipeg, Manitoba.