Dinosaurs in Detail: Inspired by Dürer (November 2011)










The children draw a lot in kindergarten, so when I do a drawing project I try and get them to look very closely at an object and draw what they can see, rather than what they think it looks like. All kids love dinosaurs, and I reckon the German Renaissance painter and printmaker, Albrecht Dürer would have been fascinated by them too, had dinosaurs been discovered back in the early 16th century! To show the children how to observe an animal in detail, I showed them Dürer’s intricate engraving of a Rhinocerous, which he drew nearly 500 years ago.

We talked about how, when Dürer drew this book illustration in 1515, there was no colour printing, so instead he had to use lines and marks to describe the different textures of the rhinocerous – the scaly legs, bumpy skin and hairy chin.

Then the children chose a dinosaur model from the toy box, and observed it carefully so they could draw the dinosaur in detail, including teeth, horns, scales, plates, spines and claws. As you can see, they really concentrated hard and produced some fantastic pencil drawings that prove how well they studied the individual features of the different types of dinosaurs!


Click on one of the pictures below to view a gallery of some of their wonderfully detailed drawings…


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