Creativity Camp: Chalk Pastel Fireworks

Happy Monday, folks! We have an explosive 4th of July inspired project today, and an introduction to drawing with pastels. You are going to need a set of chalk pastels, some black paper, and a reference photo of some fireworks. Google a good one, and meet me back here for instructions.


Now that you are ready, pick a color and make a smoky haze by lightly rubbing the side of the pastel in a circular pattern on the paper. This is a great time to map out your composition. Chalk pastels are highly pigmented, so they seem to glow against dark backgrounds. 


Use your finger to rub the pastel into smoke. 


Find the center of your circle, and work your way around it with short organic lines.


Choose another color, and draw more lines. Be aware of the direction you drew your original lines and try to match the angles.  


Keep going and alternating colors and building lines until the explosion looks full. A little imperfection in the lines makes it look more realistic, so allow your lines to be different lengths.

Begin and build your other fireworks the same way. 

Begin and build your other fireworks the same way. 


Use lighter colors on top of darker colors to connect areas and create highlights.


It gets really fun when the lines start overlapping! 


To finish, use your finger to smudge some of the ends of the lines as though you were continuing the lines. This will soften the edges and create areas of focus in your composition. 


That's it! Happy Independence Day! We wish you all a safe and exciting 4th with your loved ones! Be sure to tag us @etsydallas #EDCreativityCamp, we would love to see! 


Book Review: Water Paper Paint

  Today, I'm sharing a post from my own blog about an art book that my daughter and I have been enjoying.  Check it out!


My daughter and I are always looking for fun and easy ways to get creative together. She is a five year old with a vision, so teaching her new ways to experiment and blossom is extra rewarding. We YouTube a lot, but there is no better inspiration than words and pictures right in front of us to sound-out and emulate.


Today, we cracked open the beautifully designed, inspiration of a book, Water Paper Paint by Heather Smith Jones.  Her eyes lit up with possibility page after page until she finally landed on our exciting quick project, creating an abstract painting using straws to blow watercolor around the paper.  This was also an opportunity to teach some basic color theory, as the watercolor inevitably streamed into previous colors.  This is the equivalent of magic to a kid, "Blue and red made purple, Mama!"


If you are looking to begin painting with watercolor, this book is a great place to start. I have been painting quite awhile, and even found it to be enjoyable. It reminds me how fun it can be to just sit down and play with a medium. The author's written voice was knowledgeable and approachable. The images are a trove of colors and variety, teaching confidence building techniques with simple instruction. This book would be especially interesting for those who are into art journaling. It is not a serious book with overwhelming words and in depth information. It is a book of watercolor exercises, encouraging success through practice and repetition.