Canyonlands Field Institute Educational Team

This week, let’s take some time to have some fun and hone our observational abilities while doing some collaborative art. By taking a closer look at everyday natural objects, our minds can get sharper and notice more details all around us.

Mysterious Objects of Wonder

Materials needed: basic art supplies, paper, a natural object

Gather your family or friends outside in a garden or park. Put away all your cellphones and laptops!

Divide into pairs and have one person be the describer and one person be the artist.

The describer should secretly choose a Mysterious Object of Wonder: it can be anything natural like a stick or a flower or a stone.

Sit back to back. The artist should have some paper and art supplies.

The describer will have two minutes to describe their object while the drawer draws. The goal is for the drawing to represent the object as accurately as possible without the artist seeing the object. Think about how to describe it to your friend: how big is the object? What does the object feel like? What color is it? What does it remind you of? How heavy is the object?

After two minutes, stop and switch roles as the artist and describer. Have the new describer pick a new object of wonder.

After the second round, see how close the drawing is to the mysterious object that inspired it. Were your drawings accurate? Why or why not? Which descriptions helped make your drawings more accurate?