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Everest - Friday

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Art & Design

Learn - Exciting Paintings

When painting, it can be hard to imagine how you will make your piece of work stand out against others.

It can be useful to look at the work of famous artists and get inspiration from how they achieved it.

In looking at previous exciting paintings, try asking yourself:

  • What topic have they focussed on?
  • Which techniques have they used?
  • What style have they delivered in?
  • How have they left their own personal touch within the piece?

We're going to take a look at three artists - Andy WarholWassily Kandinsky (we looked at him in class) and Jan van Eyck.

Of course, there are many other artists you could look at for inspiration, but by doing this we will see how each artist provides us with a very different set of answers to the questions above.

'Marilyn Diptych' by Andy Warhol

In the following video, taken from the Your Paintings series, we look closer at the painting 'Marilyn Diptych' by Andy Warhol.

By doing this, we can see Warhol’s fascination with celebrity, as well as explore the techniques Warhol used to create his works.


In the early 1960s, Andy Warhol began to experiment with his screen-printing in the style of advertisements.

He took mass-produced images from American popular culture, such as Campbell's soup tins and Coca Cola bottles, and began his own style of pop art.

In 1962, he created his series portraits of Marilyn Monroe, and other celebrities included Jackie Kennedy and Elvis Presley.

By using bright colours and repetition, Warhol gets you to look at the subject of his art in a new way.

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'Schaukeln' by Wassily Kandinsky

In the following video, taken from the Your Paintings series, we look closer at the painting 'Schaukeln' (or 'Shaking') by Wassily Kandinsky.

By doing this, we can see Kandinsky’s role in the birth of abstract art and his use of shapes and colours to express feelings.

After one day viewing his own painting upside down, Wassilly Kandinsky pioneered abstract art in the early 1900s.

Instead of showing what he saw, he started to use shapes and colours to show the emotions he felt when he saw them.

Music influenced and appears in Kandinsky's works - he is known to have referred to his artworks as 'compositions', each piece composed by him. The composer he listened to was Wagner. I played music by him in class when we were doing our drawings by him. 

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'Arnolfini Portrait' by Jan van Eyck

In the following video, taken from the Your Paintings series, we look closer at the painting 'Arnolfini Portrait' by Jan Van Eyck.

By doing this, we can see how Van Eyck painted clues into the picture that give meaning behind things like dogs, candles and even oranges.

Jan van Eyck was the first artist to master oil paints.

Where previously eggs had been used, which dried quickly, oil dried much slower and allowed him time to capture more detail within his works.

The meaning behind his painting 'Alrnolfini's Portrait' is still debated to this day, 600 years after it was created.

This is because Jan van Eyck hid clues within the painting to give deeper meaning to it - the more you look at the painting, the more clues you'll find.



Activity 1



Follow along with Tate to create your own pop art in the style of Andy Warhol. 

You can make a selfie artwork, similar to 'Marilyn Diptych', for which you will need a smartphone or a digital camera, a printer, six coloured pens or pencils and paper. Alternately, you can open any basic photographic/picture manipulation  software you maight have and apply various filters. You can then make a collage of your face using all the different filters you can.

You can also design your own soup can in the style of 'Campbell's Soup Cans', for which you will just need a pencil and paper.

Other instructions here for this task from the Tate website.

Activity 2



In the style of Wassilly Kandinsky, draw a range of emotions and feelings:

  • Happy
  • Sad
  • Excited
  • Scared
  • Tired

With each one, think about which shapes and colours would work best for each one and how you relate to that emotion or feeling.

Activity 3



Have a think about how you could work in the same way as Jan van Eyck - what objects have a meaning to you or to those around you?

Make a list of at least five objects you could include in a painting, making note of their implied meaning.



Learn - How Plants Reproduce

Bees and flowers

Lots of plants rely on insects like bees to reproduce.

To make a seed, a flower needs to be pollinated.

Pollen from one flower needs to travel to another. Bees are very important for carrying the pollen between flowers.

To encourage bees to visit them, flowers have colourful petals and an attractive scent.

Some flowers give the bees a sugary reward called nectar too.

It’s not just plants that need bees; we need them too.

Without them we’d have very little food.

Lots of our fruit and vegetables come from plants that are pollinated by bees.

In this short film learn how the process of pollination works.

Plant reproduction

The flowers attract insects, the smell from the nectaries and the prettiness of the petals draws the insects in towards them.

As they dig for the sweet nectar all the pollen rubs off on their bodies from the stamen.

The nectaries are right at the bottom to make sure this happens. Once the little bee has had her fill she'll fly off to find more nectar.

When the bee digs into the next flower the pollen on her body rubs off onto the stigma of the new flower. This is called pollination.

When the pollen lands on the stigma it travels down the style towards the ovary.

Once the pollen reaches the ovary it hopes to find an ovule to attach to. This is called fertilisation.

This is the beginning of a new seed. It is absorbed into the receptacle and fruit starts to form from the seed. It is called sexual reproduction.

When the fruit is ready, the plants release the seeds which get moved into the soil.

Seeds can be blown by the wind, or eaten by animals and then pooped out in a different place.

They can explode and scatter themselves, float on water, fall from flowers and trees and they can also stick to animals' fur and be moved.

Once they are dispersed in the soil they can create new plants.

Activity 1



Try the online quiz here on plant sexual reproduction.

Activity 2



Click the link here for your  next activity.

Scroll down the page to where it says 'Life Cycles' and click on that.

Click on 'Activity 2' and study the different parts of the plant. When you are satisfied click the 'Label Diagram' tab on the top right and do the activity.


Have a lovely weekend!