Sunday, April 30, 2017

April Classes - Paint Your ART Out!

In April, as part of our Color Play lesson series (color mixing/color theory), we painted like Monet! We mixed colors and learned how to create and use the more subtle, muted colors of the impressionists to create atmosphere and mood. We learned that less is more!

Want to sign up? You can register for May classes on our website. Of course, you can also visit the Art Center and register in person. This class takes place on Thursdays from 4 to 6 pm, for ages 8 and up.

Sunday, March 05, 2017

March Classes - Paint Your ART Out!

Our Paint Your ART Out monthly class schedules will no longer be posted to this weblog. Instead, you can find the monthly schedule on the Blackfoot ART Center website at This will enable you to register in advance for a class through our online portal.

We will continue post finished student projects and instructions right here, so remember to check back often to see what we've been doing in our Thursday afternoon painting class!

Monday, February 27, 2017

Say It With Feeling!

This project is very personal to the artist. It's also super fun because you just layer colors and shapes and collage elements until you like it, then add your quote and WA - LA! 

Amazing Art!

We have a another Mixed Media session scheduled for Saturday, March 18 from 1-4 pm. 

You can see all of the details on our website at

Tuscan Colors - Like the Impressionists

The impressionists painted their 'impression' of a place instead of attempting a photographic, detailed rendering. 

Once cameras were being used to record landscapes in detail, artists gave themselves permission to use their artistic 'license' to interpret a scene more creatively or artistically. (This 'new age' art was not entirely appreciated by the art world at the time)

Impressionists began utilizing a variety of new painting methods. One method used tiny dabs of paint color that, when viewed as a whole, created a lovely combination of color and form to indicate an 'impression' of a place or scene. 

We decided to try this ourselves to create a Tuscan scene of a field of flowers with cypress trees and shrubs along the horizon. 

The results were quite stunning!

Saturday, February 11, 2017

ART Hearts!

We had so much fun creating our Jim Dine style ART Hearts mixed media paintings! We used this unusual heart art by Jim Dine as our model:  

The Handkerchief, 1993
(woodcut and etching, hand-colored) 

The heart on the right was my interpretation of the project using our media:

bleeding art tissue paper

red acrylic paint

black and white pastels

This piece is the demonstration that I did in class. Can you see the differences?

The students loved this project because it involved an unusual combination of media to create a truly mixed media piece! Also it was kind of messy and you didn't really have to plan much - just let the media do its thing. We liked how we could make it a little funky or grungy - it has sort of a graffiti look.

This great art project idea came from Edna Lemm at Do Art! Thanks for sharing, Edna!

Monday, January 30, 2017

February Classes - Paint Your ART Out!

The month of February is all about the LOVE of color!

Each beautiful project involves different art processes, media, and techniques. Try a little of everything for a fabulous adventure in color!

All of these projects are designed for ages 10 and up; no previous painting instruction or experience is required. 

Day: Thursdays
Time: 4:00-6:00 pm 
Ages: 10 and up (unless otherwise noted) - adults are welcome!
Fees: $15 per class (February 23 project is $20, $25, or $30 depending on canvas size chosen)

February  2    

ART Hearts

Jim Dine style ART Hearts mixed media painting. Fun and easy to do - experiment with the process and make more than one - for family or a special friend! This one is for ages 8 (or so) and up 

February  9    

Say It With Feeling!

Mixed Media Collage.  You'll learn how to express yourself beautifully through words and imagery of your choice. We'll supply everything and walk you through all the basic steps.

February  16    

So Sweeeet!

Create an amazing 'food portrait' in the style of artist Joel Penkman!  Work with both dry and wet media to create these tasty treats - but don't eat them!

February  23    

Tuscan Colors

Acrylic painting on canvas. Learn to use these harmonious colors on a tinted canvas to create  a gorgeous Tuscan landscape; all with simple dabs of color! NOTE: You will find this painting listed on our website as a Painting Event if you would like to register online.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Snowy North Artwork

Here are some of our Snowy North art pieces. I think they are really lovely!

The process includes:

wet-in-wet watercolor to create the gorgeous sky

black tempera paint to create the distant trees

a template and the black paint for the animal silhouette

strips of heavy white paper and a credit card to smear paint with for the trees in the foreground

scissors to cut paper strips for the trees

glue sticks to construct the trees

clear glitter to outline the horizon line and fill in the moon shape and some of the foreground

foam dots to glue the birch trees to the background to give the illusion of depth

a quote print-out about snow and funky scissors to cut out the phrases or words to be glued on to the artwork

Lots of steps, to be sure, but lots of fun!   We really enjoyed making these.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Penguin Party!!!

We're having a Penguin Party, and your child is invited!

Kids' Winter Art Workshop - Friday, January 27

TWO sessions of PENGUIN FUN!

Session 1: Kinders through 2nd graders will create beautiful mixed media penguins on ice. This project includes painting, designing, drawing, cutting, pasting, and FUN!

Times: 11 am - 1 pm
Cost:  $10.00 per child, all supplies are included. 

Session 2: 3rd through 6th graders will create a recycled plastic pop bottle penguin AND a mini-acrylic penguin painting! 

Times: 2 -5 pm
Cost:  $15.00 per child, all supplies are included. 

Note: It's okay for a student-artist (age 8 or older) to sign up for both sessions. 

Space is limited!

To sign up, please visit our website or register at the Art Center early to ensure your child's space in this fun winter workshop!

Saturday, December 31, 2016

January Classes - Paint Your ART Out!

 This month we're painting sparkling, glistening snow! 

All of these projects are designed for ages 10 and up; no previous painting instruction or experience is required. 

Day: Thursdays
Time: 4:00-6:00 pm 
Ages: 10 and up (unless otherwise noted) - adults are welcome!
Fees: $15 per class

January  5    

Snowy Alpines

Gorgeous snowy alpines - painted torn paper collage. 
Students as young as seven can create this one!

January  12

Glittery Snowflakes 

Create this winter wonderland with a simple stencil and acrylic paint and glitter on a canvas panel.   


January 19 

Snowy North

Auroras, glittery snow, winter animals, and more! A beautiful wintry scene created in mixed media.

January  26

Snowman Block Heads

Create these snow people with acrylic paint on weathered wood. Then add other fun objects to personalize them! 

Friday, December 30, 2016

A Grinchy Christmas!

Lots of Grinches!

Dancing Christmas Trees!

Adorable "Suessical" style Christmas trees!

These are acrylic paintings on canvas panels, with a little glitter paint in the candy cane trunk, star, and ornaments.

Hint: The ornaments were painted using very handy tools: fingertips!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Glimmering Ornaments!

These ornaments are so shiny and lovely!
They are also fairly easy to create:

1) The branches are created with oil pastels: first two or three colors of brown and tan are layered for the "stems." Then, four or five colors ranging from dark green to mint green to yellow are layered on and around the stems.

2) The ornaments are made by tracing round objects on scraps of colored construction paper. Also try diamond shapes, etc. Do not cut them out until after the next step!

3) Find two sticks of soft pastels that are similar in color to each ornament, using light blue for a white (snowman) ornament. Lay each soft pastel on its side and apply in a circular motion to each round ornament, using the darker shade of the color on the outside and the lighter color tint on the inside of each ornament. Rub the colors gently in a circular motion to blend from the outside to the inside.

4) Add a few white highlights with soft pastel. Add any other desired details.

5) Using a metallic Sharpie and/or paper scraps, add additional details and an ornament cap to each ornament.

6) Carefully cut out each ornament. Place each one just below a branch, rearranging them until you like how they look. Glue each one down.

7) Use a metallic Sharpie to add a hook to each ornament, and hide part of the hook behind stem or a few pine needles.

Monday, November 28, 2016

December Classes - Paint Your ART Out

This month we're painting Christmas tree ornaments! 

All of these projects are designed for ages 10 and up; no previous painting instruction or experience is required. 

Day: Thursdays
Time: 4:00-6:00 pm 
Ages: 10 and up - adults are welcome!
Fees: $15 per class

December 1    

Glimmering Shimmering Ornaments

Create these shiny glass ornaments hanging on your Christmas tree! The secret? Soft and oil pastels on black paper.

December 8    

Dancing Christmas Tree

Create this is whimsical Suessical-style Christmas tree using your own colors and embellishments! Learn color blending, simple outlining, and applying dots of color. This is acrylic paint on an 11 x 14 canvas. 

December 15    

A Grinchy Christmas!

Choose from two different styles of Grinchiness! 
Choose to paint in tempera or acrylics.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Harvest Watercolor Batik Paintings

This is a watercolor mixed media project that is fun and surprisingly easy to do!

First, liquid watercolors are used to cover an entire 12 x 18 inch piece of white construction paper - do not use watercolor paper because it is too thick and stiff for the next step!

Next, after the watercolor has dried somewhat, wad up the paper into a little ball - just like you might do to throw it away - but don't toss it! Instead, open up and flatten the entire paper, then wad it up again! Now, flatten once more and you will find that any remaining moisture has pretty
much soaked into the paper and it is dry to the touch.

As an option, you can at this time iron the paper to flatten and dry it out a bit more. Yup, that's right. With an iron. However, don't completely press out the wrinkles! The wrinkles will be needed for the batik process. Ironing is not necessary, but we did it to make the next steps easier.

Now draw your design lightly on the paper using a pencil. Use the pencil to draw in the basic shapes only, not all of the details (like the kernels in the corn). Here are some tips:

  • Use a variety of items, at least three types.
  • Try to aim for five or six types of items by adding smaller objects in the front. 
  • Use items that differ in shape, size, and color. 
  • Plan to include a lot of detail for more interest.
  • Overlap the objects - layer them - with larger items in back and smaller ones in front. 

Once you've placed everything where want it, begin to color in everything with oil pastels. Press hard, and add highlights on top (using lighter tints of the color) and shadows on the bottom (using shades of the color). In other words, don't just use white or black for highlights and shades.

Now go back in with your black pastel and outline all of your objects. Press firmly. Add details within the objects too, as shown in the samples above.

It is now time for your final step. Pour a small amount of black tempera paint into a cup and add some water to make it thin and slightly inky. Using a soft brush, paint over all of the oil pastel-filled areas with the thinned black paint. The oil pastel will pop right out and the paint will only fill in around the oil pastel marks. In addition, the paint will highlight the wrinkles in the paper for an interesting and lovely batik look. You can also allow some of the paint to flow beneath the items to indicate shadows, as was done in the bottom sample. It will appear as a transparent gray, like soft shadows, while allowing the background colors to show through.

This is fun mixed media project is great a great way to celebrate autumn colors! We enjoyed it and you will too.

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

November Classes - Paint Your ART Out!

This month, paint Autumn's color palette! We will focus on the harvest and crisp colors of autumn, all in watercolor plus various additional media. 

All of these projects are designed for ages 10 and up; no previous painting instruction or experience is required. 

Day: Thursdays
Time: 4:00-6:00 pm 
Ages: 10 and up - adults are welcome!
Fees: $15 per class

November 3    

Harvest Batik Art

This is a mixed media art project - create a liquid watercolor batik background; then add oil pastel and tempera resist for a glowing autumn-themed painting!  

November 10    

Autumn Birch Trees

Skyward view of birch or aspen trees using watercolor and oil pastel details. Perspective, composition, and art media techniques are up to the artist! 

November 17    

Color Splash Leaves

Freehand leaf illustration using a variety of fall leaves as models. Simple ink drawings with wet-on-wet watercolor. Simplicity is at work here - sometimes less is more!