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Faith Ringgold Art Project: Easy How to Draw Cassie from “Tar Beach” Tutorial and Cassie from “Tar Beach” Coloring Page

Here’s a fun and easy Faith Ringgold art project that was inspired by the wonderful illustrations she made for her first children’s book “Tar Beach”.

Faith Ringgold Art Project
Tar Beach Drawing

  • “Tar Beach” book by Faith Ringgold*
  • Faith Ringgold is an American artist best known for her colorful quilt paintings about American history and politics. Tar Beach, her first book that was written for children, has collected awards ever since it was published in 1991.

    Tar Beach is the roof of Cassie’s Harlem apartment building, and her dearest wish is to be free to go wherever she wants to go. The book tells the story how she dreams of flying, and all the things she might see if she could.

    This tutorial will help students draw a child in a flying position, surrounded by stars and a bridge. surrounded by a colorful border. They can choose to draw a child that looks like Cassie … or a someone that looks more like themselves. A few tweaks to the clothes and hair will do the trick.

    As a message of hope and imagination, Tar Beach is a wonderful book to share to any time of the year, but especially so during the month of Black History celebrations.

    Use the Button below to Download a PDF Tutorial

    Faith Ringgold Art Project

    Tar Beach Coloring Page

    Materials for How to Draw Cassie from “Tar Beach”

    • Pencil. The Ticonderoga brand are the most reliable, make nice dark lines when you need them, and are the easiest to erase. Buying the pre-sharpened ones will save busy teachers a lot of time.
    • Eraser. Large ones you can hold in your hand do a much better job than just the pencil tip erasers, especially when erasing leftover pencil lines after tracing.
    • Black Sharpie Marker. These fine point permanent marker pens make nice black outlines, have a good tip for coloring, and never bleed when they get wet. Use them with good ventilation and add extra paper underneath to protect your tables.
    • Prang Crayons. These are a bit softer than other crayons so they sometimes look like oil pastels. They also have a some nice brown shades that Crayola does not have unless you buy their larger boxes.
    • Crayola Crayons. The reliable brand that always works well. The 24 pack has some of my favorite golden orange and yellow colors that seem a bit richer and warmer than the ones Prang has.

    Step by step Directions for How to Draw Cassie from “Tar Beach”

    Time needed: 45 minutes.

    How to Draw Cassie from Tar Beach

    1. Draw a thin border, or print pg. 3 and trace.

    2. Start the simple bridge lines near the bottom.

    3. Add vertical lines to finish to finish the bridge.

    4. Draw a simple head shape and neck.

    5. Add a nose and very simple features.

    6. Draw the dress and add arms and legs.

    7. Finish with braids and a bow.

    8. Want draw yourself instead?
      Here is what shirt and shorts might look like.

    9. Trace with a marker and color.
      Leave spots for stars in the sky.

    Follow Up Project: “Tar Beach” Collaborative Poster

    Tar Beach Mural, made with PDF template in my PDF Shop

    More Black History Projects

    black history month projects
    How to Draw a Dancing Lady
    How to Draw Like Lois Mailou Jones
    quilt art lesson
    Gee’s Bend Quilt Collage
    How to Draw Like Romare Bearden

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