were excited to begin without having to redraw the original design.
I wanted the finished paintings to retain the inspiration of
the initial drawings (all artists
know that much can be lost in this
translation) and to complement the
creative spirit of the Jaune Quick-to-See Smith work. I knew that art
tissue paper and oil pastel would be
the perfect materials combination
to simulate both the bold linear
design and brightly colored, translucent washes of the paintings. The
surprise factor and pure fun of this
process is also wonderful for releasing any concern for failure that
traditional watercolor technique
can bring to young painters. I gave
a general demonstration of the surprises that art tissue paper brings:
• It releases its color when wet
with a brush, each color to a
greater or lesser degree.
• Colors blend and bleed together,
• The wet tissue paper resists the
I instructed students to use their
oil pastels only for tracing over old
photocopy lines or for adding detail
and decoration, leaving all background finishing to the tissue paper.
I showed them how they could lay
a large piece of art tissue over their
entire drawing and still be able to
see the image underneath. This
allowed them the ability to select
and control which areas would
receive what color. It also gave them
the pleasure of washing in large
spaces of color quickly.
Emboldened by the magic of
the materials and a feeling of preliminary success, each student dove
into the assignment with gusto. The
tissue was placed over the drawing
where desired, then painted with
water. Removing the wet tissue
revealed the resist and colors from
the tissue. The finished paintings
paid such great homage to the artists in their passion, imagery, and
imagination that they were later
displayed at the museum, in the
entry hall, during the last month of
Stephie Morton is the children's creativity
specialist for the Serimus Operating Foundation, which supports her art outreach
work in the community. She is also the
founder of the children’s art workshop at
the Fort Collins Museum of Contemporary
Art in Colorado.
Students use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences, and stories
Editor’s Note: For a more comprehensive demonstration of painting
with art tissue paper, go to: www.
pacon.com, click on Paper Products,
next click on Tissue & Crepe, and
then click on Spectra® Art Tissue™
and watch a short video!
• 11 x 17" ( 28 x 43 cm)
photocopies of student
• large assortment of art
tissue paper, full 20 x 30"
( 51 x 76 cm) sheets
• oil pastels
• water in individual cups