Art and Science meet, shake hands, and view the night sky comfortably from places like constellations. When these two great things get together we get some pretty fantastic things. Constellations are one of them.
To get your very own constellation, follow the instructions below:
1.) Choose an animal, or anything in fact. It could be a car if you like, a motorcycle even. We have the "Big Dipper" don't we? Why couldn't we have a motorcycle? We can.
2.) On a black piece of paper, with a white charcoal colored pencil draw your subject. I used a fish in this case. If you want to get the look like the Icelandic sheep at the top of this page, draw using continuous contour lines. Continuous contour lines lend themselves very well to these constellation works. Draw over areas without lifting your pencil to create highlights. Elementary kids, you don't need to create highlights if you're not ready for them.
3.) Use a brush apply gesso to the highlighted regions, or just trace out textures and outlines you want to emphasize.
4.) This part if really fun! Since your constellation is not the only one in the sky, and there are a thousand others stars that make up constellations too you'll need to add them to your painting. This well help us know your constellation is part of the night sky. Begin by applying a little water to the brush you have been applying gesso to. Next, use your finger to pull back the bristles (make sure to keep it on the tablecloth folks) and splatter paint all around the black piece of paper. It's okay if it gets on top of your constellation, we can go back with marker in the next step if you overdo it. Keep it light, you want your constellation to standout, you don't want to detract from your subject!
5.) Next, let's let the painting dry. You can do this by working on something else in the meantime, or you can bust out the hairdryer. It's up to you. I really don't mind using the hairdryer, and it does not alter the appearance of your gesso or charcoal. Once your painting is dry, go back in with a black marker to capture the fine details you might have lost when you applied the starry field in and around your constellation. Bring out individual shadows, patterns and texture. If you've got fur, get some lines in there. If you've got clouds, let's see some billows. If you've got sparkles, draw the shadows beneath them to make the points of light stand out. My fish needed some webbing in his fins, and shadows behind his scales, so I went in with the black marker to emphasize those details.
6.) Ah, and we come to it finally. I'm sure you've all been waiting for this part. Now, we have the stars, our little diamonds in the night sky. You do not need many, in fact the more you add the more it will detract from your design. You only need enough to trace out the basic shape. Choose small crystals to do this, and save the larger for things like eyes, and big highlights. The smaller crystals are closer to the pin-prick points we actually see in the sky. Choose ten to start with, and work your way up from there. Do not apply more than twenty. To adhere the crystals pipe on a small dab of glue to where you would like your star and attach your crystal. Choose places where lines curve, and highlights occur. Reference your model, highlights, and photograph so you choose the most accurate places to fasten your crystals in the night sky.
Oh, look how he sparkles!