Monday, November 7, 2011

Marvelous Molas

One of my all-time favorite cultural inspirations is the mola (right up there with Australian Aboriginal dot & Xray style paintings). I was fortunate to 'inherit' an authentic mola from a retiring music teacher who had traveled to Panama many years ago.

My second graders are just about finished with their compositions - done in paper rather than fabric. I stressed organic (the main object) and geometric (background & detail) shapes in the lesson. Other vocab included background, Panama, fabric art.

A previous student teacher of mine designed this lesson for 2nd graders (I've done molas using layered papers w/an Xacto knife with 5th graders before) creating simple animal templates of more than a dozen animals/reptiles of the AZ desert areas. My kiddos traced & cut out one to start the process...

That first organic shape was glued on to & cut out of a contrasting color then repeated until we had a 3-layer organic wonder.

Black was the standard background - I love that contrast! To help distinguish the different class groups among that stack of black papers, I had each class use the same color for their base organic shape. So if classwork gets mixed up on the drying rack, it will be easy to sort.

Students added geometric shapes to background. To streamline the process, paper strips - about 1/2" wide - were provided. They used these to cut off square, rectangle and triangle shapes. It was emphasized that pieces should not touch so as to allow the black background to show for contrast.

I'm seeing some wonderful creations!

I'll post some finished artworks next week...

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