And here it is with the lights on. Still just as beautiful, says me! I thought I'd take you on a tour of this gallery, complete with lights we used, projects each grade level did and supplies that work the best for black light. So, let's go!
Full disclosure: This is a spare classroom. I had the luxury of having an entire room to dedicate to the gallery. I spent one entire day with the help of a parent covering the window and setting up the displays. The artwork was simply hot glued to the wall. The best way to do that without damaging the artwork or the walls is to add a flat bit of masking tape to each corner of the artwork on the back. Then add a small dot of hot glue to the tape and stick to the wall. When taking the art down, simply give the work a gentle tug and it will pop right off the wall.
My kindergarteners created three pieces of art for this gallery. The first were these clay slab fish. You can find this lesson here and in my clay book!
They also made these fun snails from cardboard pizza rounds. They started by painting a spiral with a bingo dauber. Then they added color with fluorescent oil pastels and fluorescent paint (details on supplies in a moment). From there, they were attached to a paper towel tube and antennae were added. So cute! More details on this lesson soon, I hope!
Some of my third graders made these amazing plaster and paper parrots! I think they are one of my favorite projects from the show.
Another lesson which I hope to share with you soon...the kids loved making them!
And they were so striking in the black light.
But also great with the lights on.Let's talk supplies for a minute because it's important you use the right stuff.
* Sargent Brand Fluorescent Oil Pastels
* Jack Richeson Fluorescent Tempera Cakes
* Fluorescent Liquid Watercolor (optional)
* Fluorescent Tempera Paint (optional)
The last two we didn't use...we just stuck with the oil pastels and tempera cakes. But I will be getting the other paints for next year.
In a pinch, when time was running short, we did use fluorescent poster board and bingo daubers for some of the drawings. We did this because I only had one 30 minute art class with the kids before the big day...so we worked with the time we had. I wanted to insure that every kiddo had a work of art in this special room.
On the night of the art show, we did have a couple of teachers at the door to act as Black Light Bouncers as I knew this room would be busy. I didn't want a crowded room to ruin the experience for the kids or have any artwork potentially be damaged. We did have some glow face painting happening which was also fun for the kids. More details on all of the crazy things we had happening at our art show in a future post.
Let me walk you thru who made what! By the way, each of these 2D works of art took only an hour (or two 30 minute art classes for me) to complete.
Some first graders created the octopus (by following along with here) while some of my first graders drew the crab...a guided drawing lesson of mine. I'll be sure to share that with you too. I have a lot of sharing to do!
Some second graders created the GIANT angel fish by following here while others created the octopus on the neon paper due to time limitations.
My third graders made the sea turtles and my fourth graders made the sea horses.
Now, let's talk lighting because that is the true key. It's the reason I avoided doing a gallery like this for so long because I just didn't have a clue what lighting to get. We ended up purchasing three kinds and I'll tell you, this one was easily my fave. Starting out, one is all you need IF you block out all the light in the room, making it completely black.
We left the gallery up for several days because my admin loved it so much, she called in nearly everyone in the district to drop by and see it. Even with the lights on, it was stunning.Have you done a black light gallery before? What tips do you have? This was my first so I'm sure I have A LOT to learn. I would love to hear from you!
Super excited to start our black light gallery projects next year...even if it's MAY and I'm on summer break, ha!