Exploring The Great Artists - 30+ Art Projects for Kids - Red Ted Art's Blog : Red Ted Art's Blog

Exploring The Great Artists – 30+ Art Projects for Kids

| April 13, 2012 | 89 Comments

the great artists kids projectsIntroducing the Great Artist to my kids is something that has been on my agenda for a long long long time. My kids are only 4yrs and 2yrs old, so of course there is still plenty of time. However, this hasn’t stopped me buying lots of wonderful art books for children (amongst our current favourites are Kate and the Mona Lisa and Anna’s Art Adventure), as well as going on trips to art galleries (our most memorable trip being to the very welcoming Tate Britain, but also a couple of visits with Granny to the Royal Academy).  Now I am keen to “up the ante”. We have had a look at “real” paintings before and then had a go at painting our own (specifically we did a “Klimt” painting, that Red Ted LOVES), but I have never really approached “The Great Artists” formally with my kids and I wasn’t sure how to write about it here for you.

{If you LOVE arts & crafts and you want to keep up to date… I would LOVE YOU to subscribe to e-mail notifications and come and to join me on Facebook !}

My background is NOT in education and it is NOT in art. So, sometimes I am a little intimidated by those that do have a background in art or education and I worry “will I do it right?” and “what IS the right way?” and “If I talk about it here, will I get told, I am not doing it right?”.

But when it comes to children, in particular young children, you cannot go wrong by:

* Simply exposing your children to art – whether it is going to a gallery or looking at a statue in your shopping centre.

* Simply having a go – if you see something and it makes you want to have a go, in whatever form you choose – surely that is good and  there is no real right or wrong.

* Encourging an interest in art by asking your child lots of questions (“What colours do you like best?” “What do you think that is?” “What are they doing?” What is your favourite bit?” “How does it make you feel?”).

So. What is the best way of helping your child create art that is inspired by the Great Artists? This is the beginning of our journey. I have a number of lovely teacher bloggy friends keen and willing to share their experiences with me (some of whose sites you will find linked below). I also have a number of educational art books stacked up to read. And I invite you to join our journey with us.

Take your child’s journey, as an opportunity to learn yourself“. A child doesn’t mind if you don’t know something and it is a great way to brush up on your own knowledge!

To begin with, I have pulled together a collection of posts for inspiration – from people with all sorts of backgrounds – some in education, some not.  Some may have a formal approach, some do not.

What they have in common, is that they are sharing their interest and love for art with their children and that together they are being creative. No right. No wrong. Just having a go. Why don’t you?

So. To the Great Artist Round Up!

I have always shown “originals” by the artist. Please visit the links to explore what the children created. The art activities listed are in no particular order. I am sure you will be impressed – without being intimidated! You will find lots of different approaches and techniques. Which goes to show that there are lots of different ways of exploring art with your children! Exploring artists, doesn’t always mean, that the children “should” copy the style or painting, but for example could also mean making a puzzle out a print or acting out a story. The main thing is to enjoy the art and be inspired!

  fine art for kids

Matisse – Scrap Paper Master Piece by No Time for Flashcards

Andy Warhol’s Headlines – by Child Art Retrospective (I also love the Hundertwasser houses)

Jackson Pollock for children by Sunny Day Today Mama (and more Van Gogh too)



David Hockney, Photo Montage

Banksy, Street Art – Stencils and Spray Paint

fine art for kids the great artists for kids the great artists klimt

Mondrian – primary colours and paper strips by Thomas Elementary Art

Van Gogh – Study and Printable book by Deceptively Educational

Klimt – an art lesson by Mr Julies Art School

  art activities for children

Pop Art PRINTS – Andy Warhol Styrofoam printing by The Seeds Network

Pop Art – Portraits – Andy Warhol  Photograph block colouring by The Seeds Network (find Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg ideas too)

Picasso – A round up of child create art in the style of Great Artists by Teach Preschool

fine art for kids art activities for kids fine art for kids

Ted Harrison – By That Artist Woman

Klimt – Lesson Plan 4-6 yrs olds by Kinder Art

Jackson Pollock – large scale collaborative (fun fun fun!) by 52 Brand New

the great artists picasso the great artists the great artists

Picasso – Faces – Art Lessons for Kids

Turner – Sea Monsters by Red Ted Art (& Tate Britain)

Alma Woodsey, by We Heart Art

the great artists for kids great artists for kids the great artists for children

Kandinsky – Marker art by No Time for Flashcards  (find lots more inspiration more from No Time For Flashcards here)

Van Gogh (& Others) – tracing outlines by Practical Pages

Helen Frankenthaler – by Dilly Daly Art (and more from Dilly Dally Art here)

the great artists for children art activities for kids the great artists for kids

Faith Ringgold – Tar Beach series by Pink and Green Mama

Alexander Calder- Mobile by Deceptively Educational

(More) Kandinsky – this time Water Colours by Artsy Craftsy Mom

modern artists for children the great artists  the great artists

Kuitca – a Sense of Place collages by Child Art Retrospective

Monet – Tissue paper collage by Here Come the Girls

Mondrian – Lego (!) though not created by children, I HAD To share this “Lego” Mondrian over at Walker Zanger Blog

the great artists for children renaissance for kids monet for kids

Georgia O’keeffe – Flowers by Pink and Green Mama (also find some Henri Rousseau)

Giotto – mix your own tempura paint by Mama Scouts

Monet – a collaborative art project by Explore Education

artists for kids artwork for kids art activities for children

Aelita Andre – Prodigy of Color – by Angelique Felix

Mondrian – Cardboard Box Murial – by Art Play Explore (and find more Monet here)

(More) Kandinski – Felt (ooh lovely) squares by Art Projects for Kids

the great artists  the great artists great artists for kids

Escher, LOTS of wonderful ideas by se7en (love this site!)

Dali, again lots of ides by se7en and her kids!

Alexander Calder, sculpture by MaryAnn Kohl

great artists for kids

Van Gogh, oil pastels by Patch of Puddles

Other Arty Sites/ Posts you may like:

* Deep Space Sparkle

* Act in Art For some fabulous videos on children exploring Picasso, Klee and Klimt

* Montessori Inspired Art Appreciation

exploring art with kids

And remember to just let them look!

 Don’t forget to subscribe to e-mail notifications and come and to join me on Facebook !

Did you like this? Share it:

Tags: , , , ,

Category: Art with Kids, Get Crafty, Great Artists, Kids Craft

Comments (89)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. I\’m really looking forward to this series. Growing up with parents who studied art (modern and classic) in London in the 60\’s we spent a lot of time visiting galleries and exploring art I\’m more of a nature person and need some inspiration to give to my two on how to go about it.

  2. divasupermum antoinette says:

    great projects,looking forwarding in seeing this, although my kids will be too old for most projects, but can get some ideas from this

  3. Maggy, AMAZING GOOD Post!!!!!
    LOve it.
    Thanks for including us with Aelita André,
    Angelique and Chanel

  4. Red Ted Art says:

    @Cerys I am guessing it is just finding the time, once a month to sit down, look at some art and get inspired?

    @divasupermum how old are your kids? We are never to old to be inspired……

    @Angelique *thank you* and thank you for sharing your Andre post – she is adorable and a great reminder to us all of how creative children are!

  5. se7en says:

    Now this is just so cooling and definitely linking it in my Friday Fun!!! What a fabulous resource!!! I have to add Salvidor Dali (http://www.se7en.org.za/2010/05/15/se7en-and-a-salvador-dali-celebration) and Escher (http://www.se7en.org.za/2010/09/18/se7ens-escher-fun-pictures-polygons-and-paper-kaleidoscopes)

  6. MillyGandy says:

    Most galleries have amazing trails, hands-on family workshops to help inform and inspire the kids. We try to build in a visit to a gallery – even if it\’s just popping in to see ONE thing, every time we visit London.

    It\’s amazing what grabs their attention sometimes. My 4-yr old was recently enthralled by an artist who used sheep pooh in his work, she spent a good 15 mins chatting to the gallery attendant and asking questions, pure magic 😉

    Last year we went to Florence. My 4-yr old really enjoys a series of books called Katie by James Mayhew where Katie visits art galleries with her Gran and strange things happen … in Katie and The Mona Lisa the paintings all come to life and she ends up dancing with all the Graces in Botticelli\’s Primavera. When India had the chance to actually see the real painting she was unbelievably excited – it almost felt like a pilgrimage ! She made lots of sketches and was very keen to understand the meaning of the painting and who the various characters depicted were. She seems to really understand the painting as a different language or way of telling a story.

    We also use clay for my kids to make their own versions of sculptures or 3D installations that they\’ve seen.

  7. Red Ted Art says:

    Oh yes, I totally agree the Katie books are WONDERFUL! :-) We have one of them too!

    I love your experiences – and what is there NOT to love about pooh and you are 4! You are right.. I so need to take Red Ted to Tate Modern. He will love it!!!!!

    Thank you for your comment… much appreciated! And inspired to do some clay modelling with my son!

  8. Red Ted Art says:

    Oooh and @se7en I have add your links to the post :-) and thank you for adding me to your Friday Feature!

  9. Mansi@experimenting-mom says:

    Maggy, that\’s a fab roundup. I am looking forward to your series and will be visiting all the wonderful blogs. I loved the Escher post over @se7en. Thanks for including our Mondrian and Monet post. We also attempted a Vangogh http://www.experimenting-mom.blogspot.in/2012/03/my-little-van-gogh.html .

  10. Hi Maggie – love this resource you have gathered together, going through them slowly deciding where to start. However – one thing the link for Warhol headlines isn\’t taking me to that, but to another. Kierna

  11. Wow Maggie … that IS quite the list! Great job pulling this all together … and I can\’t wait to try some of the ideas. Thanks for including us!

  12. Patricia P says:

    What a neat collection! It\’s going to take me some time to go through it all, but I\’ve got kids that love to do art projects, so I will. I agree with you that exposing kids to art (and other subjects) is good. Even if you\’re not an expert, you can learn about it together.

  13. I am over-the-moon excited about this round up – and not just because you were kind enough to point people to a few of my ideas, but because there are so many new ones I can try with my son!! Thank you for putting this together. I can\’t wait to spend time hopping around to all the links you shared!

  14. Red Ted Art says:

    So pleased you are all inspired to read more and more and more 😉 We certainly can\’t wait to get started, but on which project first?!?!?!?!

  15. sunnymama says:

    Thank you so much for including our Jackson Pollock painting post (& Van Gogh!). What an amazing list you\’ve put together! Can\’t wait to check out all the links. :)

  16. Red Ted Art says:

    My pleasure! You guys all have such fabulously inspiring posts!

  17. WONDERFUL!!! I have been wanting to an \”artist study\” week (or 3) and this will be a perfect jumping off place. I often feel overwhelmed by stepping up and above in art (oh and in science!)but just as you said it is the exposure that matters. Another blogger spoke about how her son was playing with friction. She didn\’t need to introduce the word yet, she knew that his hands on experience would help him later. Love that! Thanks for this awesome round up. 😉

  18. Ali says:

    This is so amazing. I am so excited to start trying some of these ideas with my daughter.

  19. Keitha says:

    Wow! Love this post. Thank you so much for putting all of these great ideas in one spot.

  20. Red Ted Art says:

    @Jill thank you – yes.. I have been wanting to do this for a while.. but sometimes felt intimidated by those who \”know more\”… and then I realised I was being silly… my 2 year old LOVES looking at the cupid in Botticelli\’s Allegory of Spring (she thinks it is a baby that needs to find its Mummy).. totally adorable… and totally all you need at this age :-) look forward to your Art Week!

    Thank you Ali and Keitha! :-)

  21. joanna says:

    Thanks for including us, Maggie! What a great resource to have…can\’t wait to peek at all of them!

  22. What an amazing post and resource! It\’s beautiful just to look at! Thanks so much for linking to my Montessori-Inspired Art Appreciation post. I pinned your post to my Kids\’ Art Appreciation Pinterest board at http://pinterest.com/debchitwood/kids-art-appreciation/

  23. camille says:

    Wow, thank-you for this lovely post linking all the great artist posts together. I have been wanting to tackle art by introducing artists one at a time for quite a while now…. I had plans all thought up to start with Mondrian but although we have exposed the children to lots of art my son wasn\’t really interested in other artists only in his own style.
    Now they are both a little older, I will be checking out all the inspiration in the above links :)

  24. Maggy – thank you so much for this round up! I\’m so excited. I\’ve been meaning to start exploring the artists and art history more with my kiddos but never seem to get around to it. This is definitely giving me the kick in the pants I need to go dig out my art history books for them. I know that once we start looking at and talking about the art, the inspiration and learning will come naturally. THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

  25. what a wonderful round-up of ideas! So much inspiration to walk away with from here.

    Looking forward to this series & sharing new artists and forms of art with my girls.

  26. Whitestep says:

    We have a set of cards from the Tate that are awesome – they\’re like Happy Families, but instead you have to collect works from different artists. I\’ve certainly learnt a lot :-)

  27. Wow!! This is an amazing art round-up!! Pinned and looking forward to checking out some of these links in the next week!!

    And if you don\’t mind me posting here, I blogged about our 4 Days of Art–making art from Kandinsky, Pollack, Monet, and Picasso.


    Thanks, again!!

  28. Red Ted Art says:

    Oh my! I left for a long playdate and come back to all these lovely comments – am so pleased that you guys are excited by this project! :-) I am going to start a \”Great Artist\” monthly challenge – so for those of you that have existing posts (can\’t wait to check your links shared in the comments today) and those that want to have a go, we can share it regularly! Hooray!

    Thank you for your enthusiasm and support!

  29. TheBoyandMe says:

    Thanks for being such an inspiration. I definitely want to do this, count me and keep prodding me please?

  30. Fantastic Maggy! I can\’t wait to see what comes next. x

  31. Red Ted Art says:

    @TheBoyandMe I will HAPPILY prod you!!!
    @MummyMummyMum hopefully an inspirational giveaway 😉

  32. Danielle says:

    Thank you so much for including my Jackson Pollock project. We had so much fun painting it!
    I absolutely love this round up and pinned it. We will be doing a lot of these projects at our house. I love fine art and hope my children always will, too.

  33. se7en says:

    Thank you so much for linking us in – Really this is the most wonderful post I have seen for ages!!! What a project… Just totally love it!!!

  34. another blog of yours that i love. not surprising!

  35. Red Ted Art says:

    Thank you ladies! And se7en, loved your Dali and Escher, great additions to the round up!

  36. This is such a great idea: we\’ve been to a few galleries (the buying kind) this week and LBG has had some great insights. I think she\’d really enjoy being inspired by the masters!

  37. Ohhhhhhhhhh.. what a lovely roundup.. :) and thanks for including us.
    Sharing it

  38. Aleacia says:

    Thanks for including our Inspired art Maggy! :)

  39. What a wonderful round-up! I loved going to galleries with my Mom when I was a kid. She was an art teacher and I learned so much about artwork through her. I hope that I can share some of that love of art with my son as well. Thank you so much for linking up to The Weekly Kid’s Co-op!

  40. I’ve been looking forward to reading this post for a while. Thank you for compiling all of these! One thing I like to do at art galleries is to make up an art scavenger hunt ahead of time. http://www.havingfunathome.com/2011/10/museum-scavenger-hunt.html
    This round-up was a super idea. Now I’m off to go read your interview with Mary Kohl!

  41. WOW! How could I have missed this last week! Oh yeah…I took a week hiatus from craft blogging and browsing…but nobody ever said I would be missing something as awesome as this! I LOVE IT! I feel soooo inspired! I read your idea for kids get artsy (I think it is called) yesterday and I am jazzed to hop on board and start doing more projects with my son based on inspiration from the Masters! It looks like you have compiled pretty amazing posts. So far I have only looked at a few…going back now to check it out more! YOUR BLOG is amazing. I always LOVE your ideas! :) Glad I didn’t miss this one!

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Carolyn – with a response like that I am also SO GLAD that you didn’t miss the post!!! So pleased that you like it and that it makes you happy!!! :-)

  42. lisa says:

    Thanks for these ideas! I’m very excited to do this in a couple years when my son is ready. I’ve always been really into art so I want to make sure to expose him to it so he can enjoy it!

  43. What a grand idea! Now I just need to think on what to work on!

  44. Kristin says:

    From a trained artist, art educator, and museum curator, I must say your information is outstanding! You have inspired me…. Wonderful job!

  45. Dawn says:

    When I was 8 years old my parents bought me a book entitled “Degas and the Little Dancer” and from then on my love and appreciation for great artists only grew. When I was even younger around the age of 4 my mom and uncle (a self-taught artist) taught me how to use the color wheel and how colors match and tones. The information kids learn at that age is so vital. And I must say the education my entire family gave me about art only made me appreciate it more when we made it to NYC when I was 15 and I got to see some of the greats in person. So by all means do it!!

    Also here is my artist cousin’s website(s): http://mistyresendes.blogspot.com/


  46. Awesome round up, thanks for sharing Maggy :)

  47. Love this post! I have been very intimidated by the thought of studying artists and just finally participated in Kids Get Arty last month. The experience for me and my kids was honestly so amazing that I could not believe I had waited so long! I look forward to this new series too! Thanks for inspiring us to stretch our comfort zone!

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Awwwe what a very lovely comment! So pleased you enjoyed yourself and that you are looking forward to taking part again. It certainly is good for US too!!! Gets me doing art with the kids this way…

  48. JoAnn Jordan says:

    I can tell you it works. We took our daughter to galleries from the time when was little. We would have games like how many pictures have (insert a color or an object) in them? A lot of galleries are starting to have a kid friendly area for creating things. I’m sharing your post on my facebook page https://www.facebook.com/music2spark

  49. Oh, I love this post soooo much! I’m a non-art teacher writing about kids’ art, too, but I think you’re right- kids soak it up because they are naturally creative little beings. This is a great resource- off to pin and tweet and alls orts of good stuff!

  50. Allison says:

    Wow! This is a really incredible list!

  51. Emma Clement says:

    I really don’t know much about art at all – I was rubbish at it at school so it wasn’t a gcse topic, I’ve always been a bit more factual or sciency – my background is marketing. But now I’m a stay at home mum, I’m loving discovering my crafty side and I don’t think it matters if I’m rubbish at it, my preschoolers aren’t going to judge me!
    I’ve started taking my little people to the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square, London and they love it! And it’s a kid friendly place! We don’t follow a guide or route, we just wonder through – my 3 year old decides where and we look and talk about what we see.
    It’s fun to see things from their prospective so drop down to your knees and look at what they are looking at!
    It’s also very funny – Blake shouts naked bottom at all the cherub paintings, normally I’d be embarrassed but its funny and makes others laugh too!
    The biggest laugh he got was at a drawing of the pope – he declared it was Father Christmas!
    We chose a postcard from every visit and make a note of what we discovered. The gift shop also has some fab kids books x

    • Red Ted Art says:

      I agree! Exploring art with young children is quite different and much more delightful! We went to the National Gallery recently too and were impressed by all the art displayed. We found so many great artists familiar to us from a series of children’s books we have (Katie and….).

  52. Helen says:

    We love going to art galleries and museums. Another good source is your local university if they do arts degrees or post grad degrees. There is usually an end of course exhibition (ring first to check content before taking youngsters) Also design/textiles/architecture/performing arts departments may have an end of course display/show. It is a good way of showing ‘academic worth/value’ of the arts too. You never know your child may be the next pioneer of the art world!

    We are exploring Seurat & pointilism at home!

  53. Red Ted Art says:

    Ooh what a great idea! I hadn’t thought of the universities.

  54. Rodney Calta says:

    After 10 years of teaching art, I have never done a weaving project. Usually the classroom teachers take care of this standard but I couldn’t help myself. Inspiration from Art For Small Hands was enough to push me to try this new medium. I loved it and so did the kids. I’m not going to lie, though. This project took a bit of investigating to see how to teach this project well. ;

    Look out for our new web blog too

  55. Crystal says:

    Wow – what a great list. Fantastic resource. I’m a huge supporter of art appreciation for kids. You have so many great ideas! Thanks – I’ll be sharing.

  56. Sara-Lee says:

    You are right, your three ideas of where you can’t go wrong with kids is 100% correct. I am a primary school teacher and I have a Bachelor of Design, and I think your ideas and what you are doing with your children is invaluable. Art has many benefits, not too mention Dexterity and improvements in had-eye coordination, which will help your children with handwriting also. Keep up the great work!

  57. Rakesh says:

    I really like that even kids enjoy Art so much.

  58. Nichola says:

    I LOVE this posting. Can’t wait to try them. I was wondering if you can recommend a good book with images of famous works of art that would go nicely with this so that we can initiate discussions? Thanks.

  59. S says:

    se7en came up as containing a trojan horse when I clicked on the link!

  60. Victoria Easton says:

    Do you have a book with the 30 + art projects for kids? I really want to look into projects to help young children learn about famous artists.

    Thank you for your help.

  61. Sarah says:

    Love the ideas and the artists featured. Introducing and cultivating a love of art in children is so necessary and it looks like you’re doing it in such a fun way. Thank you for sharing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *