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Springfield, IL 62703
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How To Draw A Balloon Kid - For All Grades

March 31, 2020

There are many ways to draw people; this is just one way. After you have learned how to draw stick people with moving stick arms (at wrist, elbow, shoulder) plus moving legs (at ankles, knee, and hip joints above legs), then you are ready to learn how to draw a balloon kid. The great thing about balloon kids is that it will look more real than the double wide stick kid, or the regular stick kid.  You will need paper today of any kind and may use your choice of medium such as a pencil (with eraser easist), crayon, or markers. I recommend drawing light so you may erase more easily. If you draw light you can more easily put clothes over body later and erase body lines under clothes that won't show since clothing now covering parts of body. By drawing the body first, clothes will lay against the figure (the body) more naturally. Today we will draw the easiest balloon kid that is looking straight at you. It will be full faced. You need to make the body large enough that later you may add facial feathers to it more easily. So near the top of the page, you may draw a vertical oval (not the horizontal football head oval) the size of a quarter or a little larger (leave enought space on top of oval to add hair or  anything else you may later need atop head). Then draw two lines down for neck (one line down and your kid in the drawing won't be able to keep their head up; ouch).  Then draw horizonal (line goes across) shoulder line making sure line is a little longer than length of neck or head (feel your shoulders on each side; shoulders are longer than where your head ends on both sides). Next you will draw chest area by drawing a line connecting ends of shoulder is what looks more like a soft  "u " shape or a smile. So to do this, at the end of one shoulder, swing the line down softly (not a " v " line as then the person will not be able to put food in their tummy) and then swing back up to connect with the opposite shoulder. The shoulder connected with the soft " Uwil look more like an umpire's protective pad that the umpire holds to protect theirselves when they are behind the batter at a ballgame. If this chest area is small than you will be drawing a baby (as their heads are larger), however as a person grows up the chest area gets to become bigger than the head. Next are hips! The hips are important for lower body movement! The hip bone is shaped more like a horizontal  " 8 "  -  so it is an " 8 " that is laying down). You may draw on your paper then an oval that is more horizontal / sideways. Make your hips big enough that you can move easily and have given enough space to hold lots of yummy food in your tummy!  Before you go further, think about what activity or sport you want your balloon kid to be doing. Do you want the kid running in a soccer game, dancing, playing a musical instrument, or whatever else you can imagine ( hmmmm, let me think ). Once you have decided what activity you will draw, that brings us to the fun balloon part! Lets think about how balloons look first. Pretend you are blowing out a balloon that is bigger at one end and a little smaller at the other end. Picture it in your mind. Then raise up your hands and hold out space in hands as big, slowly move ams in a down motion, while hands space is getting smaller. So you are articising (art exercise) big to small. Rule in drawing balloon kids arm and legs is: Big to Small. Now back to you; put your hand at top of arm by your shoulder and feel the straight bone that goes down to your elbow (notice that it it like a balloon, and that it goes from big to small (bigger at top of arm then smaller to your elbow.) You may even say it aloud as you touch top of your shoulder ( "big" ), then say, ( " to small " ) as you slide down top of arm to elbow. The lower part of your arm from elbow to wrist ( a straight bone, unless you broke it) are smaller than the top part of your arm. The balloon is still big to small though. Put your hand on your flesh just under your elbow and again say, ( " big " as you then slide your hand down to your small wrist as you say, ( " to small " ). Now go back to your drawing as it is time to add your arms next to end of should line (do not put half way down side of chest (you are not an alien). Now remember the activity to are going to be making your balloon kid do (you may even hold out your own arms as if you were doing that activity and imagine / picture it in your mind.) So now ready to draw the top of arm  (bigger ) to elbow (to small). Remember balloon is straight! You may angle balloon to go up in air, diagonal line, or straigh out, or go down. Then next arm balloon is the elbow to wrist, which is smaller than the upper balloon. This balloon also straight. Does it go up , out, swings down, goes across hips or chest? All up to you and what activity balloon kid is doing. Remember their are two balloons on each arm (we will come back to hands later.) Draw both arms, but save hands for later.  Next is legs. Question for you: "Are your arms or your legs longer and bigger?" Answer: "Your legs are longer and bigger than your arms."  Rule of "Big to Small" still applies to legs in drawing balloon kids. Picture in your mind what the legs are doing in the activity of your balloon kid, then your body in one place, how would your legs make that motion? Put your hands on top your legs (thigh) and say, " Big  "  as you move hand down to your knees as you say, " too small " .  Next put your hands on your calf (fleshy part of your leg just under your knee) and say ( " Big " ) as you slide it down your leg to your ankle as you say, " to small " .  Go back to your drawing now. Draw your legs under the shape you made for your hips and lower body. Think big to small balloons, and that your legs are bigger and longer than your arm balloons. Ask yourself, in the activity do legs go out, up, or down? Draw two straight balloon for each leg moving as they would need to for the activity they are doing.  Next is hands, you may draw them more like a mitten with wide fingers, unless more circular if hand in fist. Then you are ready for feet. But first as you are sitting down, Put your hand on your foot. Which is bigger, you hand or your foot? The answer, "Your foot!"  So when you draw your foot in your art make it bigger than your hand! Now if the activity you are drawing is a ballerina in pointe shoes than your will need the oval feet to be up and down / vertical. Otherwise, draw the ovals for feet more sideways (if you draw the foot sideways / horizontal then your knees must be bent out, and "ouch" that is too painful )!   Now the balloon kid body is ready for your activity!   You may draw rest of details activity on your paper now. Ask yourself, "What is my balloon kid holding in hand, by their feet, are they indoors or outdoor, what is around them...?  Or you may see notes below and wait for next part. If your are going to draw facial features now, I suggest you start eyes half way down on oval before you draw rest of face features. Then ears if seen, then hair. Clothing goes next to body parts (remember where waist is located.)     Note: There will be another article above this lesson plan your may find on my website on my teacher home page that will explain clothing and shoes. Then an article on facial features proportions, hair, and ears above that one on my teacher homepage website.    Additional Note: When drawing the balloon kid, if you run out of room on the paper for the full body, that's ok! You can always use your imagination as to where the rest of the body is located.