What is pop art?

The name was derived from artists taking their inspiration from popular culture and mass media, incorporating elements such as comic books, advertisements and science fiction into their work.

The works were abstract and had very strong graphic elements, in stark contrast to the prevailing art forms of the day.

The pioneer of the pop-art movement was Andy Warhol, who made art history with his boldly coloured prints of icons from popular culture, including Elvis Presley and Marilyn Monroe. He even created works consisting entirely of the humble Campbell’s Soup cans.

You will need:

•    digital portrait
•    Dala Picture Perfect
•    medium-sized paintbrush
•    flat paintbrush
•    4 same-sized stretched canvasses
•    cloth
•    artist’s paintbrush
•    brightly coloured craft paint

To make:

1 Use a digital camera to take a few portrait photos of the person whose image you are using for this project. Ask them to look straight at the camera and try to visualise the image as it will appear on the canvas.

2 Download the images onto your computer. Choose a photo that is in focus so that the outlines are crisp.

3 Use the software that came with your digital camera or use a program such as Adobe Photoshop to digitally manipulate the image. The basic software that comes with digital cameras will have different kinds of functionality, including story-book effects, or colouring-in applications for you to play around with.

Experiment with different effects until some areas of the picture are darker and some lighter, so that the appearance is similar to that of a comic book. Finally, change the picture to black and white.

4 Make a black-and-white print of the picture to fit the canvasses you will be using. If your canvasses require large prints, have the images enlarged at a copy or print shop. Make four photocopies, and a few extra to allow for mistakes.

5 Work with a single photocopy at a time. Paint a generous layer of Dala Picture Perfect onto the front of the print. Wait a few minutes, then carefully place the print face down onto a stretched canvas. Ensure that the print is positioned correctly and smooth out any bubbles or folds, if necessary.

Leave to dry overnight. Repeat to transfer the remaining three prints onto the stretched canvasses. Ensure that all four canvases look exactly the same.

6 As soon as the paper has dried completely, use a wet cloth to dab water on to one of the canvasses until the surface is damp. Allow the paper to soften, adding more water if necessary.

7 Now carefully rub off the paper with your fingertips. Keep dabbing water on to the paper to ensure that it stays soft, and keep going until all the paper has been removed.

If any paper remains behind, it will form white spots on the canvas once it has dried completely, so ensure that all of it has been removed. Repeat to remove the paper from the remaining three canvasses, then set aside to dry completely.

8 Paint the background and other sections of the prints with brightly coloured craft paint. Use an artist’s paintbrush to paint the finer detail on the prints.

Text and image: Ideas

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