Jago is a respected artist and illustrator of children's books. Our family has particularly enjoyed his work in The Jesus Storybook Bible, and it inspired my latest art project below for Ascension. This whimsical aerial view painting depicts the 11 disciples staring up into the clouds after Jesus has returned to the Father and the two angels who respond their bewilderment.
Step 1: Using watercolors or thinned tempera paint, make a grassy background. Ascension actually took place on the Mount of Olives, so the kids can use their imaginations and paint flowers or whatever they think should be on a mountain. I painted the background here green with yellow streaks.
Step 2: Paint eleven dots in different colors to represent the disciples' heads. This is a great counting exercise for younger children as well.
Step 3: While the dots are drying, paint white clouds using a thicker acrylic or tempera paint. I used what Germans call "Deckfarbe", which is a type of tempera paint. The clouds do not have to be opaque. Leaving them a bit transparent gives an airy feel to the painting.
Step 4: Next add the angels. Paint a dot for the faces and just a hint of wings.
Step 5: Once the paint is dry, use a black felt tipped pen or a gel pen to draw faces on the the disciples and the angels. This is also a way for the children to explore and process what the disciples might have been thinking as Jesus was taken up into the clouds. Were they surprised, sad, angry, happy, shocked, etc.? Older children can draw the bodies as well, but younger children are fine just to draw the faces.
If anyone tries this project with their children, please send me pictures. I'd love to see your results!
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