Contour Drawing: Hands-On Learning Stations

Contour drawing was one of my favorite projects in my high school art class. I think I loved it because we would sit outside and draw the trees. It was always amazing how cool the art pieces turned out when you were just slowing yourself down to focus on the outline of shapes. A contour drawing can be quick or take longer, but they're perfect for a beginner.

I'm focusing on Art this week in my 31+ Days of Hands-On Learning Stations series, and today is all about contour drawing.


Beginner Blind Contour Projects

Contour drawing is about eliminating the details and focusing on the form. Look for something that has a simple form. Place it in front of sold backdrop (like the driveway) and give kids a pen and paper to draw. No pencil.


The goal is to make your pen move at the same time as your eyes. Students need to slowly trace the object with their eyes, and transfer that concept to their paper without lifting their pen or looking at their paper. This will not be beautiful, but it will be fascinating!


Still Life Contours

Another great project for learning contour drawing is to stage a still life arrangement. This could be anything from your fall decorations on the table, to a bowl of fruit from the kitchen. When the weather isn't conducive for being outside, sit in front of the window and draw the outlines of what you see. All of this practice will continue to cultivate observation and patience in art.

If you don't have time to set something up, try drawing practice cactusIt is a great way to transition from 2D to 3D contour lines.

The human body is also a great source of inspiration for contour drawings. Get one of these simple wooden body forms to reposition and have endless fun drawing.

Have you ever tried a contour drawing?


Check out more hands-on learning stations inspiration in my 31+ Days of Hands-On Learning series! Looking for more art ideas? Try some of these:


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