Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Watercolor Painting a la Oak Meadow

I'm learning that Oak Meadow is not a curriculum to be rushed. Everything we do in OM is very "intentional" with a real and well-thought out purpose. In addition, everything is a process. In fact, for Third Grade, I have a Home Teacher's Process Manual that covers everything from Guidelines for Recorder Playing to Crayon Drawing.

Today we worked on Watercolor Painting. There are four pages in the Teacher Process Manual devoted to teaching Watercolor Painting. Who knew painting with watercolors was so complex?

With Oak Meadow, there is no using those nasty watercolors that come in the plastic box...the ones that all turn black after a couple of uses because all the colors get mixed up, but then it doesn't matter anyway because they crack when they dry out and you have to buy new ones. No, we used high quality paints and a good paint brush.

We used just the three primary colors. Sometimes less is more. At first, Thing 4 balked at the lack of choice, but she quickly figured out that mixing colors to create other colors is fun! With this technique, you mix the colors on the paper as you paint, not in a dish.

Oak Meadow encourages a "wet paper" method of watercolor painting. When the paper is wet, the colors blend more easily, and it allows more movement of the paint lines. I thought it was a strange concept until we tried it. If you're going to use the wet paper method, it's important to use high quality watercolor paper. All of my high quality supplies came in the art kit I ordered from OM, but you could find them at a craft store.

Today she really enjoyed just experimenting with the colors and seeing them blend.

It's not exactly a Monet, but she had fun! There's no going back to those nasty watercolors in the plastic box.


  1. I just took a "mommy" class on watercolors last week. The teacher taught us the wet paper technique. I really enjoyed using watercolors (which she told us, us harder than oil painting). I'm so glad You all are being exposed to so many things!!! GREAT job!

  2. I love painting - watercolors are so fun. Glad Thing 4 had a good time too. :)

  3. I just linked to this post, if that is ok.....



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