Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Winter Birch: A Watercolor Masking Technique

Using masking tape or painter's tape your child or students can create an evening winter scene of birch trees and snow.  The tape is used to mask the shapes of the birch trees and moon, while white crayon or oil pastel is used to draw snowflakes.  A blue watercolor wash is used over the picture.  After pulling off the tape (try to give the wash a few minutes to start to dry so as not to run) black or brown lines can be added as detail to the trees

Vocabulary to Introduce:
masking technique
watercolor wash

-watercolor paper
-masking tape or painter's tape
-blue watercolor or watered down tempera paint
-white and black crayon or oil pastel

Pre-tear or cut as many trunks and branches as necessary so that all you will need to do is hand them to the child or students to place on the paper.  Masking tape can rip the paper if it is pulled to quickly.  It sometimes helps to stick it to an article of clothing before handing it to the child or instructing them to do it if you can trust them not to fold the tape in on itself.  If you desire, tape off the other colors of paint so that they are not tempted to use them or place bowls  with the thinned tempera between seats placing  a paper towel beneath it to daub excess paint from the brush.

Our YouTube Video demonstrating the process:

For older children you can allow them to cut or tear the tape themselves.

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