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Picasso Portraits – Kindergarten Style!

Picasso gives us many great opportunities to teach about abstract art! I like to do this lesson with my Kinders after I teach them the more “traditional” methods of drawing portraits. They really enjoy this chance to “get a little crazy” with their art! (Warning: Get ready to hear some of the FUNNIEST comments from 5 and 6 year olds while doing this project…. My favorite was from a little boy who very seriously said, “Hmmm…This kind of looks like my dad.”)

Begin by showing students some examples of Picasso’s work in the various different styles he worked in. Talk about realistic vs. abstract art. Then get to work creating a self-portrait in the style of Picasso! (No mirrors needed for this one!)

Use a black “F” Sharpie and crayons for this project…. no drawing first with pencil and no erasing. Just go for it and have FUN!!

1. At the top of your paper, write “Picasso” and below that write his dates: 1881 – 1973.

2. Now draw a large oval in the center of your paper.

3. Next, divide your oval in half with something other than a straight line.

4. Add three (or more) eyes, two noses, and two mouths. Place them anywhere you like, even going right off the face! Combine front views and side views. Add some ears, too, and some hair. (Remember to draw the hair as a shape!)

5. Add a triangle below the face for your neck and shoulders. Jazz it up with some fun patterns and geometric shapes. (Picasso loved geometric shapes!)

6. Now, draw some fun shapes and patterns in the background.

7. Finally, color your drawing with crayons. Press hard so the colors will be nice and bright. (Picasso loved color!) Remember to color “the kindergarten way”*…. all one direction, so it doesn’t look scribbly.

*If you’re talking to 1st graders, say “the 1st grade way”, etc.

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