Beautiful blossoms in the spring can bring out the artist in many of us. Grade 3 student, Visha Maisuria decided to create a painting of her house with a tree in front. “I saw the blossom tree and it inspired me,” said Maisuria.
On Friday, April 25th the halls of Clearbrook Elementary were filled with paintings of wildlife and scenes from the outdoors. Students and staff at the school had enjoyed an opportunity to experience art with professional artist and illustrator, Susan McCallum.
They created acrylic paintings of birds, animals, flowers, and other images that moved their creative spirit.
Photo (right): Visha Maisuria with A Village with Blossoms.
Organized by teacher, May Chan, “Brush Strokes with Susan” took place over three weeks at the school. Both teachers and students became artists. “During this time, students were instructed on how to draw a picture that they would be using for their acrylic painting,” explained Chan. “Then from their inspirational drawings, Clearbrook Elementary students were encouraged to paint freely from their drawings onto a stretched canvas. This artistic process allowed the students to realize that they were able to draw, mix paint colors, and be proud of their works of art.”
Each painting has its own story. One day while walking to a park with a friend, Grade 4 student, Sukhman Pandher saw a bird in a tree. “It inspired me,” said Pandher and she painted it on canvas.Self expression through art is a passion of Susan McCallum. She loves to share her enthusiasm with her students.
“Everybody has their own unique way of expressing themselves through color, brush strokes, and images,” says McCallum. “It comes from within.”
During her time with the students, she saw them become more confident and more relaxed with their art.
“They feel a freedom to be able to choose what they want to paint or draw. Every single painting is totally unique.”
Some students are hesitant when faced with the challenge of creating a masterpiece. McCallum enjoys helping them overcome their reluctance with confidence building activities.
Students might start by shaking out their hand and then scribbling. Then they go into shading and making grey scales. With stories to inspire them, McCallum starts many new artists on their journey. Grade 5 student, Adam Froese enjoyed McCallum’s story about a squirrel and decided to draw and then paint his interpretation of the tale..
Expressing themselves through their art gave many students an opportunity to share their interests and experiences. “Orcas are my favourite animal,” said Jimmy Gill as he displayed his painting with pride. “Drawing the orcas was the best part.”
Learn more about Susan McCallum and her art at: www.susanmccallum.com