Kids love to make projects with their names. So introducing graffiti has them all smiles from the start.
We live in a town with the railroad tracks right through the center. The kids see the train cars covered in graffiti just about everyday. It makes a great attention grabber to start the lesson.
We talk about what it is, where they see it, why it's there. We talk about vandalism and destruction of property.
Then I show all legal examples only. I make it a point to stress this over and over. I have a loop of several really good examples from you tube, graffiti artists working on legal walls in Los Angeles, Germany, and Switzerland. Our Monday Motivation artist, Dare, was from Switzerland. It's hard to find good examples of the techniques without the fancy filming techniques, or inappropriate for elementary school music choices in the background. I run these clips on my projector ( no smart-board in my classroom :( ) with the sound off and we talk about the color choices and styles.
These video clips are from IRONLAK, a spraypaint company, at a festival they set up just for the artists to test out the product. Artists paint on large panels set up in the grass.
Students start with simple line and add bubble letter or block letter shapes around their name.
Once we have the shapes, they enlarge and push them together so the letters are all touching.
Some remove lines between letters. Other start planning their designs across the letters.
I made up some color group signs to demonstrate different effects with the various color choices the students wanted to make.
After the names are colored, I will introduce shadows. Then we'll enlarge the designs one more time with a series of contour lines around the whole shape.
Finally we cut out the names and hang them in the halls of the building at various places to simulate graffiti art that just pops up almost overnight (the kids like that part best)
update on 27 Sept - here's a few more examples....