SchoolArts Magazine

February 2018

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Page 36 of 54

E A R L Y C H I L D H O O D H ow could you experience a paint- ing if you could not see? That is the question I ask my second- grade students at the beginning of my annual tactile painting lesson. We go through each of the five senses: Could you hear a painting? Could you smell a painting? Taste it? (Yuck!) Could you feel a painting? (Yes.) Artist Andy Lakey Paintings by the late Andy Lakey were the initial inspiration for this early childhood lesson. Lakey was known as the "Painter for the Blind" after a happy accident combining two different kinds of paint produced a new texture. He used the paint to add tactile elements to his paint - ings, often outlining focal shapes and filling spaces with a language of lines. After someone suggested that he share his artwork with people who were visually impaired, Lakey started to donate a portion of his work to hospitals and schools for the blind. Lakey was even patronized by Ray Charles, who encouraged him to continue his mission. Drawing with Sand To begin the studio portion of the lesson, students use a crayon on con - struction paper to plan a design that will become the textured lines. There are many approaches to planning the design. Some students make a recog - nizable design, but the most successful projects are nonobjective. After the lines are planned, I intro- duce my favorite supply for teaching texture: sand! Sand is an unexpected media that piques students' interest Tactile Catharine Morris PAINTINGS Zayne Sommers, grade two. 32 FEBRUARY 2018 SchoolArts

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