Rex Ray is one of my favorite contemporary artists and his work is a great springboard for projects for senior artists or anyone really! He lived and worked in the San Francisco Bay and was both a fine artist and graphic designer. (Sadly, he died in 2015.) I was first attracted to his music tour posters. He did so them for greats like David Bowie, The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, U2, Patti Smith, Radio Head and many many more. When I Googled him and saw his fine art, I was in love. The colors and clean graphic images that he created are very appealing and exciting and they were sold commercially for interiors. I encourage you to take a look at his large body of work as there are many pieces that would be great inspiration for an art project. I chose the image above because of its simplicity, organic quality…and the fact that it had circles. I knew I had a couple of circle punches which would make it easy to make a large quantity for my senior artists to choose from and work with.
YOU WILL NEED:
- BLACK SQUARE SCRAPBOOKING PAPER (12 X12)
- ADDITIONAL CARDSTOCK (various colors) AND NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC (OR OTHER) MAGAZINES FOR CIRCLES
- CIRCLE PUNCHES (TWO SIZES) I USED 1″ AND 2″ SIZES
- OIL PASTEL CRAYONS (BLUES, GREENS, AND GOLDS)
- GLUE (Elmer’s type, washable)
STEP ONE: Color Xerox original REX RAY artwork. (Click here or search Rex Ray Images)
STEP TWO: Punch out circles in various sizes. (I had two circle punches that I got at AC Moore which made this process fast and fun.
NOTE: I punched some of the circles from National Geographic Magazines to add interest and texture.
IMPORTANT: (Put a heavier piece of card stock weight paper
underneath the magazine page that you choose so that you are
punching two layers of paper. Otherwise, the circles get jammed
in the punch.)
STEP THREE: With photo image of original artwork in front of them, have artists start to draw a series of lines in blue, green, and gold. NOTE: DO NOT PUT THE CIRCLES AND GLUE OUT YET! ONE STEP AT A TIME WORKS BEST!!
STEP FOUR: Take the pastels away and then put out glue and punched circles. Instruct artists to add as many circles as they desire. I gave them glue and a paint brush to adhere the circles to the paper.
This was a simple project but kept my residents totally engaged for about 45 minutes As always, I was inspired and amazed at what they did. Several of those in the later stages of Alzheimer’s/ Dementia enjoyed moving the circles around on the black paper without using the glue or pastels.
It is pleasing just to play around with the colorful circles on a black ground. I had one resident put some circles in a cupcake tin as a sorting exercise….so this can be an activity that is geared to people of all abilities. Each added their own unique touches. Here are some of their creations! WOW!