Nature Book Club: Painting Monet’s Garden

Do you love it when nature and art come together? I sure do and that’s why I’m excited to share this painting Monet’s garden project with you today!

Nature Book Club: Painting Monet's Garden

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You know those books you seem to borrow from the library over and over again? The Magical Garden of Claude Monet is one of those books for us.

My youngest kiddo and I love turning the pages and being reminded of a little girl named Julie who really did get to stroll Monet’s Giverny gardens and see for herself the inspiration for some of Monet’s most beloved work.

And like so many other times, these readings of The Magical Garden of Claude Monet often lead us to borrowing other books we’ve read and loved, like Linnea in Monet’s Garden and Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists: Claude Monet.

Then, in true If You Give a Mouse a Cookie style, we find ourselves once again grabbing our paints and drawing inspiration from what we’ve seen in these beautiful books about the gardens that Monet captured on canvas and shared so beautifully.

Can you relate? If so, come along and paint Monet’s garden with us!

Painting Monet’s Garden

Here are the supplies you’ll need to gather to paint Monet’s garden with us:

Worth noting, Monet is known for his impressionist style and it admittedly seems a little off to do a Monet-inspired watercolor resist project.

Please know that I get downright starry-eyed when standing in front of an impressionist painting, but I also acknowledge it’s not necessarily a style most younger kids will have the patience to explore.

That said, the goal here isn’t to master impressionism, but instead to encourage your kids to see the natural world as Monet saw it. That’s why we’re keeping it simple with watercolor resist. ;)

Step 1. Setting the Scene

The first step to painting Monet’s Garden is to set the scene. You do this by choosing one of Monet’s paintings for inspiration and deciding what you’ll paint. We’ve talked about The Japanese Footbridge series a good bit recently and chose to highlight the water lilies from those paintings.

To set the scene, sketch a water lily onto watercolor paper using pencil. (Watercolor paper is best, but we actually used mixed media paper for this… no worries if you don’t have watercolor paper on hand.)

Nature Book Club: Painting Monet's Garden

Need a little help sketching? We like this step-by-step tutorial to help with water lilies. Keep in mind that you don’t have to use a tutorial; the important thing here is to sketch your scene with Monet’s garden in mind.

Step 2. Outlining the Water Lily

The next step is an easy one. Using oil pastels, carefully cover all pencil marks on your paper.

Nature Book Club: Painting Monet's Garden - Step 2. outline the sketch

If you don’t have oil pastels on hand, crayons can also work. The main difference is the oils provide a richer coverage and will do a better job preventing the watercolors from running together in the spots that need color distinction.

Step 3. Painting Monet’s Garden

Finally, grab those watercolors and carefully paint Monet’s garden using your favorite painting for inspiration. :)

Nature Book Club: Painting Monet's Garden - Step 3. Paint the scene.

That’s all there is to it: pencil it out, cover your pencil marks with oil pastels, and finish it out with watercolors. I hope you enjoy painting Monet’s garden with your kiddos!

Nature Book Club: Painting Monet's Garden

Need more Monet? Check out our Monet Unit Study and our Monet booklist.

Nature Book Club: Painting Monet's Garden

I also invite you to check out these fantastic art helps from Masterpiece Society. Both of these are ideal if you’d like to study Monet with older kids and teens, but can be adapted as needed for younger kids.

The first is Mixing with the Masters workshop. One of our go-tos for artist study, it combines video art lessons inspired by some of the world’s greatest artists, Claude Monet included. (If you don’t need the entire workshop, you can select the Monet lessons alone!)

Lastly, if you’d rather focus on in-depth artist study, I encourage you to consider Masterpiece Society Art Appreciation. Just like the mixed media workshop mentioned above, you can select the entire course or just focus on Monet himself.

Nature Book Club Monthly Linkup

June Theme: Gardens

We loved our time painting Monet’s garden, but we’re also excited to take a look at the other book-inspired ideas happening through The Nature Book Club. This month is all about gardens and we’ve got some awesome nature learning activities for you here! Let’s take a look:

Nature Book Club – June 2019 – Gardens (Painting Monet's Garden)

It was a monthly book club devoted to connecting children to nature. There was a theme for each month, and we invited other content creators to share their nature books and activity-related links!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter