Laurel Burch Mythical Horses Inspired Art Lesson

Laurel burch horses



Lines, Shapes & Abstraction Laurel Burch Mythical Horses Watercolor Resist Painting

Laurel Burch is truly an inspiration of perseverance and determination. She had a zest for life and unquenchable courage to pursue her passion of creating art despite debilitating circumstances that would eventually bring an end to her life. WOW!


  • Review types of lines, geometric and free-form shapes.
  • Recognize that artists use repeated lines and shapes to create pattern in their artwork.
  • Learn simple abstraction techniques. Identify the differences between realistic and abstract works of art.
  • Learn about the artist Laurel Burch and her art career in the fashion world.

Supplies: 12×18″ white 90lb paper, crayons, watercolors, Laurel Burch Horse Paintings reference pictures


  1. Ask: Do you think you could have a career doing art? What types of careers can you think of that are art related? Brainstorm as a class what types of careers use art. (Artists, graphic designers, digital artists, cartoonists, animators, architects, fashion designers, etc.)
  2. Review types of lines: horizontal, vertical, diagonal, curved, zig-zag
  3. Review types of shapes: geometric, free-form (organic)
  4. How can we use these lines and shapes to create pattern? Optional Pattern WorksheetPattern Worksheets
  5. Learn about Laurel Burch Laurel Burch Biography
  6. Watch Video: Laurel Burch Art Appreciation (starts at 38 seconds)
    • What challenges has she had to overcome?
    • How did her challenges impact her life and determination to create art?
  7. Look at artwork by Laurel Burch (Cats & **Mythical Horses Gallery). She often used cats and horses as her main subject matter.
  8. Ask: Is her artwork realistic or abstract? Abstracted because of non-realistic color and added patterns. *Show example of realism versus abstract.
  9. Simple Abstraction Techniques: Color distortion (change from realistic colors), simplified line and details, image distortion (stretch, shrink, twist, chop up & re-assemble), add patterns

Activity: Laurel Burch Mythical Horses Watercolor Resist Painting


  1. Draw a border around the paper that is about the width of 2 fingers together (don’t use a ruler-keep it free-hand).
  2. In the center draw an abstracted horse or 2 horses together (provide examples of Burch’s Horse paintings).                                               Laurel Burch Horses
  3. Outline with Crayons (encourage LIGHT colors).Laurel Burch Horses
  4. Use Crayons to draw patterns in the borders, on the horses and in the background (encourage LIGHT colors).Laurel Burch Horses
  5. Paint with watercolors & watch the resist happen! (My FAVORITE part!!)Laurel Burch Horses

Laurel burch Mythical horsesIf you choose to use the information in this post (written or photo), please link back to my blog Create Art with ME.

One Response
  1. Juanita

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