Wax resist painting: The Rainbow Fish


Hi, this is Joelle Meijer. I will show you how to use the book “The Rainbow
Fish” as a source of inspiration for a visual arts activity using wax crayons
and watercolours. This drawing and painting activity is based
on the wonderful book The Rainbow Fish, by the author and illustrator
Marcus Pfister. I started by thinly drawing the outline of
the fish with a pencil but this step is optional. You can start your
picture with crayons right away. I will draw all the important elements of
my picture with crayons. I chose to use a blue crayon to draw the outline
of the fish, its fins, its scales, the mouth and one eye. Then I coloured some details of the fish with
other colours of crayons. For example, I coloured the pupil of the fish
in black, the mouth yellow, some scales red and others white. I also drew
white lines on the fins . In addition to integrating reading with art
activities, this project can be used to talk about science topics such as the physical
appearance of the fish. Fish have fins to help them balance and swim
in the water. You can also talk about marine life, plants and other organisms in
the fish’s environment. So you can draw algae and corals of different
colours. Still in relation to the science subject, you can explain to children how fish breath
under water. With white crayon, you can represent the carbon
dioxide bubbles that fish reject while breathing. When you are satisfied with the crayon drawing,
it’s time to cover the whole design with a thin coat of blue paint applied with
a brush. What is interesting with this technique is
that the crayon does not absorb the paint. The areas of paper that are not covered with
wax absorb the paint while the crayon drawing retains its colours. In the story, the Rainbow Fish is covered
with shiny scales of many colours. To represent the shimmering, you can colour
the scales using glitter glue pencils. To cover the white scales, I used silver glitter
glue while I used various other colours on the
remaining scales. In addition to integrating the reading activity
with visual arts and a science lesson, this beautiful book also allows you to talk
about sharing. For young children, it is not always easy
to share but it is something they must learn. To print the illustrated instructions of this
project, click on the link below the video.

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