Wednesday, May 18, 2011

kings, queens and the other dude

to wrap up our middle ages unit students either turned a photo of themselves or an imaginary king, queen or jack/joker/"other dude" (that will make sense in a few photos) in a playing card.

This year I agreed to let students draw a person if they really didn't like their own photo. This lead to a mixed bag of results...from playing cards where you can easily ID the student to some cartoon like people.
(this is really cool when you can see the to enlarge)

In the future I will do this project earlier in the year when the kids have more patience. I feel a lot of the work is cute but could have been better executed. As I've mentioned I'm having a really, really, hard time motivating my current 6-8th class to do the level of work I know they are capable of.
(good example...except why is his neck yellow?)

Anyway if you would like to do this project first print a photo of each student and have them trace the contours of their face/shoulders with a markers directly onto the photo or have them draw a head and shoulders of a person. (This was a good review of contour line drawing) Then have the student add accessories that make their person (or self) more regal. Crowns, scepter, capes, fancy clothes... spears....
(the "other dude...a palace guard I believe)

then using a tracing method of your choice (we used some carbon paper I found) trace the image onto a large sheet of paper 2 times. Make sure to flip and center the image for the second tracing.

go over your lines with sharpie and then add color using the media of your choice. I asked students to stick the primary colors and black, white and brown. Some followed that direction and some didn't.
(even in cartoon her sassy personality shows through;)
Last add the Q or K or J and the suit of your card in the upper and lower corner and mount the finished work on black paper.
part of the assignment was mixing the paint or colored pencils to match each students skin color...not easy when you have over 20+ nationalities in your school
rock on! I'm the king!
shy in real life and shy in her drawing

No matter how basic the drawing these look great in the hall and are getting positive reviews form the staff around the school. Just a fun twist on a self portraiture project.


  1. Hey, I did this, too, in September with my 8th graders! It was a great project! I like outlining them with sharpies, though. I will try that next year! I'm so glad you posted this!

  2. I love doing this project! I have them carry and "identity item," like the other cards hold flowers, axes, etc., except my students would hold paintbrushes, hockey sticks, microphones, etc.