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! 

Monday, October 03, 2016

All About Color!

All About Color is the Blackfoot Art Center's newest art class. Take this course and learn everything you never knew about color! Students will learn
  • to appreciate the beauty and versatility of color
  • to recognize the complexities of color and color relationships
  • to understand the psychological meanings of color and how they affect us
  • to see how light affects color and how our brains perceive color
  • to successfully mix, manipulate, and combine colors in their artwork                    
Students will receive weekly in-class projects and challenges using a variety of media including paint, pastel, coloring pencil, and collage materials. 

It is suggested that students complete each lesson in progression so that they can build on previously acquired skills. However, it is okay to sign up for this class sign up at any time, as each student will be working on projects as open studio and individualized assignments.  

This 10-week course is for students ages 16 and up.

Day: Tuesdays, Adult Open Studio
Dates: Starts in January 2017 
Times: 6:30-8:30 pm
Course Fee: $10.00 per two-hour class session

Please visit the BAC website to learn more or to download a class registration form.

Saturday, October 01, 2016

Paint the Witch's Hat!

Our popular Witch's Hat is back! 

Paint your own unique and spooky Witch's Hat using patterns and colors of your choice: we'll show you how to do it! This is a 16 x 20 stretched canvas painting, just in time for Halloween decorating! For ages 10 and up. 

Bad day or time? Set this one up as a private event. Hurry! You'll want to display this painting right up until the Big Night!  

Please note: We have had so much interest in this painting, this event will fill up fast, so please don't delay. Book your seat by calling, emailing, or coming into the Art Center. You can also contact us through Facebook (click on the Event and click "going") or you can book your seat on our website at  Space is limited! 

Friday, September 30, 2016

October Classes - Paint Your ART Out!

All of this month's projects and paintings will portray Halloween pumpkins and jack o' lanterns! We'll use various techniques and art media to create a different pumpkin project each week. These will make great Halloween decorations for your home!

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 (6:30 on October 13)
Ages: 10 and up - adults are welcome!
Fees: $15 per class (more if you choose a larger canvas size on October 13)

October 6    

'Jack' on Wood Folk Art Decoration

Acrylic/mixed media Halloween jack o' lantern on weathered wood. Class is limited to 8 students. To book your seat, advance registration for this project is available at  

October 13    

'Eerie Jack' Canvas Painting

 Acrylic Halloween jack o' lantern on a stretched canvas - your choice of sizes. Choose your canvas size:

11" x 14"  -  $15.00 (regular class fee)
12" x 16"  -  $20.00
16" x 20"  -  $30.00

You may register in advance for this class on our website at

October 20 and 21 (your choice!)  

Spooky Forest Jack

Charcoal, soft pastel, and tempera. Try this mixed media project – if you dare!

October 27    

Zentangled Pumpkins

A doodler's dream! Create your designs in ink, then (optional) fill these beauties with watercolor!

Friday, September 02, 2016

September Classes - Paint Your ART Out!

Join us in September as we celebrate the Eastern Idaho State Fair! 

This month we'll be painting 'down on the farm!' Our projects will include a farm critter, a whimsical rooster, and a tiny barn painting!

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 (sometimes until 6:30 for longer projects)
Ages: 10 and up - adults are welcome!
Fees: $15 per class

September 15    

Farm Critter Portrait in Watercolor

Learn watercolor techniques - and how less is more!

September 22    

Whimsical Roosters

Paint a glorious, whimsical rooster in your choice of media!

September 29    

Barn or Farmhouse Painting on Wood

Paint an adorable tiny farm on 7" x 7" weathered wood! 

Whimsical Flowers!!!

This mixed media floral art work was done using acrylic paint, acrylic gloss medium, stamps, word printouts, various scrapbooking and other papers, and buttons. The substrate is a piece of weathered wood, which we sanded lightly before painting and gluing our mixed media elements to the surface. Super fun project --- and more to come!

Pastel Flower - in Detail!

Here's another example of a pastel floral painting.

Like many of O'Keefe's flowers, this one shows the center of the flower in great detail.

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Georgia O'Keefe Flowers!

American artist Georgia O'Keefe painted flowers from the inside out, you could say. She painted something very small in a very large format. In addition, she usually painted just a portion of the flower so that you could see the tiniest structures in great detail.

For this project, we selected a flower that we liked and masked off just a small section of it to paint. Then we enlarged that section to a 9 x 12 piece of black construction paper, on which we created our flower using soft pastels. We used our fingers and Q-tips to soften and blend our colors or to slightly remove color to create lines, shadows, and detail.

Monday, August 08, 2016

Cactus Gardens!

These beautiful mixed media cactus gardens are ink drawings that have been filled with watercolor.

Creating this little cactus garden helps students to plan a composition, gain confidence with ink (Sharpies), blend a background using two or more analogous colors, use Native American-inspired patterns in artwork, and plan a color harmonious scheme. It is also a great way to encourage using the watercolor palette wells for mixing watercolors instead of simply painting with the colors directly out of the pans. I asked the students to mix a variety of greens to paint the various types of cacti after observing from photos how different each shade or tone of green actually was.

By the way, I have found that Prang watercolors are the best for teaching beginning watercolor. They are super bright and radiant, and are affordable.