FREE LESSON: The Last Post
Commemorate ANZAC Day with this special artwork.
Easy Peasy Level:
- Events – ANZAC Day
- Drawing – perspective
- Painting – spraying and mixing coloured dye
ANZAC Day is a special day where we remember those who fought and died in war for their country. In ceremonies across Australia and New Zealand you will hear a lone bugler playing the Last Post, a tune that signals the end of the day or that a soldier has been laid to rest.
In this artwork, we create scene of a WW1 soldier playing his bugle in remembrance of his fellow soldiers who have lost their lives.
Lest We Forget.
You will need:
- White paper
- Black oil pastels or black permanent markers
- Vegetable / food dye. Yellow, red and purple (or blue.)
- 3 spray bottles
- Paper kitchen towel
- Newspaper or table covers
- Paint shirts or table covers
Easy Peasy Tips:
- This artwork could be completed with either black oil pastel or black permanent marker. If you choose the markers, consider using a smaller piece of paper so that you don’t use too much of your markers when colouring.
- Black markers will allow more detail but they can also be expensive.
- You will need to use ‘permanent’ markers or they will ‘bleed’ when sprayed with dye.
- If you use oil pastel, use a large sheet of paper so that adding detail is easier.
- A silhouette is created when there is a bright light behind an object. We often see silhouettes at sunrise or sunset. They’re great to draw because you don’t need to worry about too much detail.
For The Teacher:
- Play the Last Post for the students so that they have an understanding of what the bugler is playing.
- Show the students suitable online images of the WW1 battlefields. Discuss what they can see and what it would have been like for the soldiers.
- For a more creative and student driven activity, show the students the completed artwork and ask them to create their own version of it. They can choose what to include in the silhouetted landscape.
Creating Your Artwork:
Place your paper portrait style.
- Drawing: In the bottom 1/4 of the page draw and colour the ground as shown. Imagine a big bomb crater in the battlefield.
- On the left side of the page, draw the legs as shown. The top of the legs should finish in about the middle of the page.
- In the next 1/4 of the page, draw a large arch shape. This arch should be a little wider than the legs, have straight sides and be on a little bit of an angle so it looks like the bugler is leaning backwards as he plays.
- Now begin drawing the head. We don’t draw a circle! first draw a vertical line at the front and a line on an angle at the back. Join the two with a frown shaped line as shown. Be careful not to make the head too big or small.
- To draw the hat, 1/2 way down the head, draw a wide line on an angle across the head. Then draw a wide frown shaped line on top, just lower than the top of the head. Now colour the whole head and hat in black.
- On the vertical line carefully add the shape of the nose and chin as shown to complete the face.
- Now add an arm and hand to your soldier as shown. A good point to start is at the top of the shoulder with a horizontal line for the top of his arm. The hand should be just higher than the mouth.
- Colour the hand and arm in black.
- Now carefully add the bugle. A bugle is like a trumpet but without keys to change the notes.
- Barbed Wire Fence: We will try and make the fence look like it is disappearing off into the distance. To do this draw three different sized vertical posts. The one nearest should be largest. The one furtherest away should be much smaller.
- Now add the wire. Draw lines that start together on the small post but get wider apart as they get closer to the left of the page. This is called perspective. It is a trick artists use to create depth in their artworks. Then add x’s to your lines to make it look like barbed wire. Just remember that the x’s get smaller and closer together as they go off into the distance.
- Now add some crosses. An odd number always looks best. Draw them different sizes or heights to create interest.
- Now prepare your vegetable or food dye in water and place in your spray bottles. You will need yellow, red and purple.
- Begin spraying the dye over the artwork. Use yellow first, then red and complete the spraying by using purple or blue on the top.
- Soak off any excess dye with paper kitchen towel.
- Your artwork is now complete.
What do you like about your artwork? What would you do differently next time?
- The spray bottles make this lesson quick and easy but if you don’t have them another idea would be to paint the background first using poster paint and then draw the silhouette once it is dry.
- Why not try some of our other silhouette lessons?