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Lesson 1: Cubist Self Portraits

(Designing a self-portrait in a Cubist style)


Lesson Procedure with Time Line:

Day 1: I will present a film introducing Cubism and the artists associated with this movement. Following the film, I will explain how Cubism was a radical departure from how previous artists have presented the world in a visually realistic way. I will show examples of Cubist art and discuss its stylistic significance.

Day 2: I will introduce the lesson. Students will use oil pastels to draw various parts of their face from different angles and distances. They will then cut out these facial parts and arrange them on a piece of construction paper to form a Cubist style self-portrait. Students are encouraged to express their own personality through the drawings. Example: If a student feels that they are a very visual person it would make sense to draw several views of their own eyes to express this personal quality.

Day 3: Work Day- Draw various facial parts.

Day 4: Work Day

Day 5: Work Day- Arrange self-portrait on construction paper and glue on final product.

Day 6: Critique: Each student will present their finished work to the class and they will explain why and how it reflects their own personal characteristics.



Students will see how other artists have expressed the realistic world in an abstract manner.

Students will have an opportunity to express what they feel is important about themselves in an abstract way.


Goals and Objectives:

Students will learn how other artists have expressed their ideas in a visual way.

Students will learn how to use oil pastels.

Students will consider what ideas about them are important and what ideas they want to visually communicate about themselves to others.


Materials List:

9" x 12" white paper, scissors, glue, oil pastels, pencils, construction paper, hair spray



Reserve a movie about the Cubists.

Check out books, which show examples of Cubist art.

Demonstrate techniques of working with oil pastels.


Adaptations for Disabled:

Make written directions to help remind students of the steps of the lesson.

Associates and myself will assist lower ability kids with problems as they encounter them.



Students will be evaluated based on the following criteria: attitude and effort, use of the elements of art, personal experience context (project relates to personal qualities that the student is trying to communicate), creativity and originality, technical skills, clean-up, and their explanations of their ideas.