artists paint portraits

Artists Paint Portraits Kindergarten Art Docent Program - Earhart Elementary School

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Page 1: Artists Paint Portraits

Artists Paint Portraits

Kindergarten Art Docent Program - Earhart Elementary School

Page 2: Artists Paint Portraits

Leonardo da Vinci[1452 - 1519]was born in a little village called Vinci in Italy, and his name, Leonardo da Vinci, means “Leonardo from Vinci”. He painted another famous picture, a religious work, called “The Last Supper.” He was a great scientist and engineer. He invented war machines and made designs for an airplane, a helicopter, a pump, and a submarine hundreds of years before the first ones were built.

Mona Lisa

A story is told that music was played while she posed to charm the smile to her lips. Her hands are beautifully painted. Leonardo worked four years on this portrait.

Does she have something on her head?

Is she wearing jewelry? There was a necklace but later painted over it.

What do you see in the background behind Mona Lisa? [Countryside]

Notice that she has no eyebrows.

Page 3: Artists Paint Portraits

Vincent van Gogh[1853 - 1890]We learned about him last month. During his lifetime, he sold only one painting for about $80. He completed almost 900 drawings and 800 paintings.

La Mousme

Is this portrait of a young girl similar to Leonardo’s painting in any way?

What two colors has van Gogh used the most of in this portrait?

What is the girl holding in her hand?

Do you see any pattern in her bodice [top part of her dress]?

Page 4: Artists Paint Portraits

Gilbert Stuart[1755 - 1828]was an American painter born of Scottish parents in Rhode Island. He painted more than 1,000 portraits, including six presidents.

George Washington

Do you know who is this? [The father of our country]

George was 64 years old and President of the United States when this was painted.

Does his eyes seem to follow you around the room?

Does he look serious in this painting?

Page 5: Artists Paint Portraits

Paul Klee[1879 - 1940]was a Swiss-born artist who was trained as a violinist and who spent most of his life in Germany. He was always interested in children’s art and developed a style which combined his rich sense of humor with a child-like view.

Head of a Man

Do you think he was painting the portrait of a real person or a person from his imagination?

Have you ever seen a person who looked like this?

What shape is the head?

How is it different from the other shapes of heads that we have seen today? [Round like a balloon]

Do you see any more circles in the picture? Other shapes?

Do you suppose this man is angry or may be “seeing red”?

Page 6: Artists Paint Portraits

Thomas Sully[1783 - 1872]was born in England but came to America as a child. When he was 54 years old, he went once again to England and painted a portrait of Queen Victoria. He completed some 2,000 portraits and miniatures and another 500 paintings of other subjects.

The Torn Hat

How old do you think this little boy is?

What do you think he is thinking about?

Do you think he has been out in the sunshine?

Where is the hat torn?

Can you see the lighting and shadow on the boy’s face?

Page 7: Artists Paint Portraits

Hans Holbein[1497 - 1543]He received his early training from his father. He painted exactly what he saw, not trying to make a person look more attractive than the person really was.

Writer Erasmus

What is the man doing?

What is he wearing?

What do you think his coat is made of?

The man is looking down at what he is writing, and this directs our eyes to his hands and the paper.

What is he using to write with?

Page 8: Artists Paint Portraits

David Alfaro Siqueiros[1898 - 1974]was one of Mexico’s best-known and most original artists. His major works include murals at the Palace of Fine Arts and the National University in Mexico City.


Would you like to have this man for a friend or enemy?

Do you think he likes to take “no” for an answer?

He was a great leader of the Mexican Revolution of 1910.

The diagonal lines move our eyes to the space behind the man.

Page 9: Artists Paint Portraits


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