I found this painting idea over at Artsonia.com, and like how it asks students to think about how close shapes look large, and faraway look small. And what better place to do that than in outer space?
1. Students start by drawing part of a very large planet in one corner of their watercolor paper. Next a rocket, several medium and few small circle planets are added until the paper is full. Details like bumps and rings around the planets could be added to make their picture more interesting.
2. When the drawing is complete, all the lines are traced with a black Sharpie marker. Make sure you use a permanent marker, and not a water-based one or the lines will bleed later on.
3. To add lots of stars, the students will need to use a white crayon and draw lots of little X’s all over the paper. They need to press hard and draw many to make an impact after painting.
4. Lastly, the planets and rocket are painted in with watercolor paints, and after they have dried a bit (no big wet spots that will want to bleed) the background is painted with lots of black watercolor paint.