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Friday, December 11, 2009

How to Draw Intricate Snowflakes

I made the lines as light as possible so that they wouldn't show up as much when you design your snowflake!

I love snowflake patterns! I draw them on cards, paint them on my windows, cut them out of paper, and frost them on my cookies! Do an image search for Wilson Bentley or "Snowflake Bentley" to see some absolutely stunning photographs of real snowflakes. I give each student, even preschoolers, this basic template.

I show them how to make a basic shape, one at a time, on each of the "spokes". This is a great way to talk about patterns, symmetry, and design. This is also a great way to teach a very important concept in the creative process. It's amazing what you can accomplish when you work from simple to complex. One step at a time. If you continue adding one little detail at a time, such as a line, a triangle, an x, all the way around, you eventually have a very intricate snowflake. If the students are patient and keep with it, they won't be able to believe what they can draw. This makes a great challenge. Trying to be creative from a strictly graphic design point of view.

I used this as a warm-up for one of my oil painting class. It's fun to see how the blue and white mixes together and it's a great way to practice painting technique. I also used in on a lesson in pastels. I used pastels to make my Christmas workshop poster.

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