Norman Rockwell was an American painter. He was born in New York City in 1894. Even as a child, he was a talented artist. He went to art school and began making illustrations and paintings right away. Rockwell worked for The Boy Scouts of America organization as well as several magazines. He worked as an illustrator and made many, many magazine covers throughout his life.
Perhaps he is most famous for his many paintings in The Saturday Evening Post. In fact, he created 321 covers for The Saturday Evening Post, which launched his popularity throughout America. His paintings were charming pictures of everyday life in America. They captured small moments of life and the unique culture and patriotism of America in the 1900s.
Your Own Saturday Evening Post Cover
You can create your own cover using this printable The Saturday Evening Post Cover.
This beginning cover sketch was made based on his very famous Triple Self Portrait idea. You can see Norman Rockwell’s famous version of his Triple Self Portrait right here. Start with making a simple outline of yourself from the back as shown. Add a square canvas and an oval mirror.
Now begin to fill in more details. Add your face, both in the mirror and as you are drawing it on your canvas.
Add as many details as you would like, then color your cover.
Norman Rockwell’s style of painting is called photorealism because his paintings look almost like a photograph. In fact, he often used photographs that he took himself to make the paintings. Rockwell began painting from life, but he evolved into painting from photographs. Watch this video about his process.
- Go visit the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. If you can’t go in person, you can visit the website and take a peek at the museum.
- Learn more about photorealism and look at the work of some other photorealistic painters.
- Take your own picture, project it up on a screen, then trace it and color or paint it.
- Some modern art is very abstract, quite the opposite of photorealism. Which style do you prefer – abstract or realistic? Write about your opinion and why you prefer it.
- Use a camera to capture scenes from unique angles – up above, from down below looking up, or really close to the action.
More From Layers of Learning
The arts portion of Layers of Learning Year 4 Unit 12 is all about modern art and artists and includes the art and photorealism of Norman Rockwell and other modern artists. You can get the unit here.
Here are a few more things you might enjoy from Layers of Learning, beginning with our Arts page where you’ll find lots more fun art lessons.