Beat the quarantine blues by finding inspiration in the great outdoors
#AtHomeArt projects from Youth and Family staff. Sponsored by SONIC Drive-In.
With more time spent at home, some of us are turning to the great outdoors as to relieve stress. You might be taking the time to ride a bike, enjoy a leisurely walk or try your hand at gardening — while observing social distancing guidelines, of course. While you are out enjoying the fresh air, take a closer look at the natural elements around you. They might have even more to offer than you think.
Today's #AtHomeArt project will teach you how to use grass, leaves, sticks and a bit of yarn to create your own natural paintbrushes. The project is inspired by Bright Golden Haze artist Yatika Fields, who uses brilliant color and whirling patterns to suggest movement in bold, abstract landscapes like Eternal Sun, on view in our delayed inaugural exhibition. Whether you are moved by waves of grain or the gentle rustling of trees, today's project will have you seeing your natural surroundings in a whole new light.
Here's what you'll need to get started:
- Leaves, grass or even weeds
- Yarn, tape or string
- Go outside and look for grass or leaves you can use as heads of paintbrushes. Get curious! Think about different marks that can be made by using different types of leaves.
- Find some small sticks you can use as your brush handles.
- Place your leaves at the end of one of your sticks. Make sure to overlap the leaves on the sticks.
- Take your yarn and tie it around the leaves and stick. Tightly wrap the yarn around the stick and leaves to secure them together. (See the top picture for an example.)
- Once you've wrapped the yarn securely, tie off the yarn and cut off the excess.
- Wave your brush in the air to ensure nothing falls apart. If something is loose, repeat the two steps above.
- Dip your new brush in some paint and get started!
Need a little more inspiration? Check out this installment from our Illuminations video series, in which Yatika Fields talks about his journey as an artist, the colors of nature and the joys of ultra marathon running:
Kau’i Kanahele, coordinator of Youth and Family Programs
Christine Gibson, manager of Youth and Family Programs
Image: Yatika Fields (Osage/Cherokee/Muscogee Creek). Eternal Sun, 2020. Oil on canvas. 6 ½ x 13 feet. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Alex Marks. Photo of natural paintbrushes by Kau'i Kanahele.
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