Watercolour & Ink Wash Lanterns

Teaching Art

If you are a teacher in China, in the month of January or February, you WILL make a lantern. The lantern is the Christmas tree of Chinese New Year. Ugh! Don’t get me wrong, I love a lantern but I am over the construction paper, slouchy, slotted mess with a handle that always breaks. OVER IT! So, this year I made it my mission to make a lantern with students that broke away from the mundane. But before we move on, please repeat after me… “I will not, put a real candle, with a real flame, into my lantern.” Good, moving on.

IMG_2026.JPG

Students started by painting an ink wash made from recycled and soaked marker cartridges.

IMG_2089.JPG

While the paper was still wet students either sprinkled rock salt or drops of rubbing alcohol to create a interesting background to which they would paint on top of. The following week, we used black ink and a straw to blow branch like trails of ink across the coloured backgrounds.

IMG_1959IMG_1952

Finally students folded the paper into fourths, cut six triangle notches at the top of each fold and clipped the ends of the paper so they would fit together. After folding up the flaps, students glued the seam and then glued a piece on black card stock onto the bottom and top. If you want the top or lid to open and close, only glue one flap to make that possible.

IMG_1994IMG_1952IMG_2004

To actually turn it into a lantern, put an electric candle inside. The ones that flicker are the best, however the intensity of the glow will be different depending on the thickness of the paper. A wire handle can also be added as well for display purposes. The kids loved the way the lanterns looked and I think we were all pleased to have changed the status quo of the lackluster lanterns from earlier years.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s