Lesson Objectives: Students will learn how the use of color in different values creates depth and light while creating their own painting in the style of Seurat.

Time Required:      1 hour 

Artist: Georges Seurat: Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grand Jatte


8”x10” canvas board, or poster board

Removable tape

Acrylic paints

Paper plate for palette

Cotton swabs 


Discuss artist and artwork.  Define and explain value and Pointillism. 


  1. Before class, apply tape around border of canvas board.
  2. Demonstrate techniques:  Show how two different colors of dots placed close together create the illusion of the color they would create when mixed; how to change the value of a color by adding darker or lighter colors to create shadows and light; and how the space between the dots affects the value of a single color. 
  3. Students will use cotton swabs dipped lightly in paint to build up a picture using all dots.  Students are encouraged to fill the entire page with color – leaving no white spaces, up to and onto the taped edge.  White paint is where white is represented in the picture. 
  4. Carefully remove tape only after painting is complete. 


Paper without removable tape can be used and then trimmed to get a “clean” edge.

This project could be done with oil pastels.