Today I have guest author and also a dear friend, Sharon Jeffus, sharing
ideas on incorporating music into art.
by Sharon Jeffus
My father had an amazing collection of old records. The size of these old records can be large or small, but they make a wonderful lesson in fine art and painting. Before you use an old record for artistic purposes, check this website to see if it has any value: http://www.wikihow.com/Sell-Old-Phonograph-Records
I found that most old records had no value. I didn’t want to throw them away and I found that no one wanted them, so I got the idea to paint on them with children. Not only can children recognize and learn painting technique, but it is an opportunity to talk about music history as well.
When I teach positive/negative space to children, I always mention the master artist Rembrandt. He was a Dutch Baroque artist considered one of the greatest painters and
printmakers in European art history. The picture above is just one example of his use of positive and negative space. Go to this website to see more examples: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rembrandt
Another interesting study in art is the use of oval and circle surfaces for paintings in the Renaissance.
The above picture is by Botticelli. As you can see, it is painted on a dark circle background. This could easily be done on a record. Painting on a circle shape is a challenge in itself. What is the center of interest in this picture? What do you look at first and why? On important thing I always tell my students is how nothing is just one color. Things are different colors because of how the light falls in the picture.
When I started painting on records, I realized that acrylic paint was the best kind to use and that sometimes two or three coats were needed. I also realized that creating textures was an exciting and easy thing to do. The best plan is to give students a circle piece of white paper before they paint, and allow them to put the composition on the paper first.
The delightful thing about this form of art is that you can paint on one side of the record and listen to the other. Target and Sam’s Club both have record players that are CD and tape players, too. On the opposite side of my aquarium record work of art, the songs are “Sunrise Serenade, “and similar pieces.
Classical music goes perfect with my outer space record.
I am just starting to watch children create wonderful things and learn music and art at the same time from this lesson. They can even listen to World War 2 songs while studying history. In my dad’s collection are Burl Ives and his wonderful folk songs, so enchanting for children to listen to. Younger children can listen to his song “The Bear on the Ball with the Parasol” and then do a picture of it. The St. Louis Symphony has a competition each year where children picture a piece of classical music.
Children also learn recycling. Come to our new visualmanna.com website where you can get many lessons similar to this. Our newest book, Dinosaurs, Dragons, Castles and Knights will be followed by Saving Money in Hard Times/Arts and Crafts used in the Depression.
Copyright Sharon Jeffus, 2010.
This article is by Sharon Jeffus of Visual Manna. You can go to visualmanna.com for information on her books and internet workshops. Students learn techniques and how to do art step by step live on the internet. You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org for information.