I LOVE the children's illustrations of Eric Carle. When it came time to teach the design element of "Texture" to my students, I thought his books would be a great example.
Since we have been obsessed with seeds, plants and gardens lately, I chose that as the theme for our pictures. We spoke at length about including what our plants would need to grow (soil, water, sunshine) and how we would represent that in our picture. Then we set to work creating the painted, textured papers that we (inspired by Carle) would use to create our collages.
We painted cool colours on a separate day from warm colours so we wouldn't end up with a uniform brown muddy pallet of papers.
Look at all of the beautiful options!
The students made a background paper with fingerpaint, and when it was dry the set to work tearing and gluing our textured papers to make their garden pictures.
I put a picture of a garden from one of Carle's books up on the data projector to inspire us while we worked on collage day.
I bought little packets of flower seeds to attach to these. That and a kindergartener-written poem... BANG! Mother's Day present.