We have something really fun planned for you today..
What kind of paintings do you like to make?
Do you like portraits?
Do you paint landscapes?
How about abstract paintings?
Abstract paintings are your very own combinations of shapes, colors, and forms that might not be recognizable as anything in particular. Jackson Pollock was an American abstract artist in the 1940s and 1950s. He was famous for making huge, messy, splatter paintings. He was nicknamed "Jack the Dripper"!
Look at this photo above of Jackson Pollock working...he looks like he's making a huge mess, but he's really painting on a large canvas laying on the floor! He first used the process of pouring or dripping paint onto a flat canvas in 1947. These drips and pours formed complex patterns that expressed his feelings and personality. Pollock would move very quickly and even dance across the painting, dribbling the paint in long, wobbly lines. This is called action painting. Sometimes he threw the paint onto the canvas right from their containers or from a brush. Some of his paintings still have footprints on them from when he stepped in the paint. He also would drop stuff like bottle caps and little bits of paper in the paint. He even tried bouncing a basketball through his canvas! Having a hard time imagining this? Luckily, Jackson Pollock recorded his action painting and even told us a little bit about his process! Check out this short video for a closer look...
Have you ever head of automatism?
When you use automatism to make art, you paint or draw what you feel without thinking about it or planning what to do. It's kind of like when you doodle on a notepad without a goal, but use chance and accident to make your picture. Want to give it a try? Get a piece of paper and a pencil, then close your eyes and start to draw on some paper. Draw squiggles and lines, and just let your pencil guide you. Now open your eyes. You have just made your first piece of automatism!
This painting is called Summertime, Number 9A. It was painted in 1948 at a happy time in Jackson Pollock’s life when he had just moved to a farmhouse in the countryside with his wife.
Jackson Pollock enjoyed listening to music, so the title of the painting could also refer to a popular song called Summertime by George Gershwin. Some people think that his paintings have a rhythm to them like music.
Take a listen to this song buy clicking the button below..
Jackson Pollock died in 1956, but his work continues to inspire artists from all over the world to experiment and invent new ways of painting.
Here's what you need:
- A place outside to paint, in the grass or on your driveway
- A tarp/ bedsheet/ plastic/ flat cardboard/ anything to protect the ground from paint
- A large sheet of paper or a canvas
- Painting tools: a paint brush, a ball, a ruler or maybe some kitchen utensils.. get creative!
- Paint and small paper bowls
- Music to help you find a rhythm (optional)