Matt creates abstractions big and small that make great use of color and shape to create an interesting play between flat, decorative space and implied 3d space. Many of his pieces have gem or crystal like feel to them. While looking at work from his website, we talked about how parts of his images pop out at us, or go back in space. We identified his use of diagonals and tints and shades to create this sense of space.
I compared this effect to how the cuts on a diamond create the create different values and bright spots due to how light hits it.
I used Matt's work to introduce the students to analogous color schemes and how these colors can create a strong sense of unity in art. They chose one of these analogous scheme to complete their project.
The art activity was pretty straightforward, but in these few steps were many possibilities for visual variety.
1. Draw main shape
2. add diagonals, starting in center rotating to each corner, and repeating main shape outward
3. add analogous color pattern. Using tints and shades to create different values.
One thing I found surprising was how many students, when asked to draw a line through the corner of a shape, drew through the shape's side instead. Even after having the class identify corners and non-corners on my large version on the projector screen.