April 11, 2013

Gyotaku Like You Mean It

I have to say I am in love with this version of Gyotaku. Gyotaku is the Japanese art of fish printing. Originally done to record the size of the fish caught, now it has become an art form.

So how in the world do you say Gyotaku? First you say it like you mean it. . . but make sure you pronounce it right. GEEEE OOOOOO Taaaaa KEWWWW

Last year we created a watercolor seascape then printed the fish right on the wet painting. This meant if the print was less then perfect you were stuck with it.

This year we printed the fish separately and painted the background. The next class we collaged the fish on the background. Notice we didn't paint to the edge of the paper. Phyl from There's a Dragon in My Art Room mentioned this technique helps the paper dry without curling and it worked.

I teach printmaking to my Kindergarten and first graders through monoprints and collagraphs so this is the perfect extension of printmaking in second grade. I just love when the curriculum flows seamlessly.

Here are our results.

This top fish looks like so many of my pet fish have.
Swimming upside down, it usually doesn't end well.


Mrs. C said...

These look great! I love the one floating upside down! :)

Unknown said...

haha me too! A few years back I brought a Goldfish into my classroom and we named him (appropriately) Matisse. The poor thing ended up getting an erasure in his bowl *somehow* which lead to an eye infection and a few days of him swimming upside down. I tried fish anitbiotics, but nothing worked. The whole thing was a mess and he is missed very much! I often think about him when I want to teach Matisse and his goldfish painting. Haven't been able to do the lesson since his demise. Though I think this last one could be a tribute to him.

Heather said...

I'm always disappointed with my classes gyotaku prints, this is a nice lesson plan. I''m going to do it your way next time. p.s.I love the title of the post!