Recreating the Masterpieces


Like most certified art teachers, I was required to student teach for half of the year at an elementary school and half at a high school. Both experiences were wonderful and challenging in their own ways.

This project was by far the coolest lesson I have dreamed up! I would love to do this again at some point with my art club kids. One of the classes I taught at the high school level was Art History. In an attempt to make art more relatable to a group of high schoolers, I came up with this idea of using photography to recreate the most famous works of art.


What you need:


  • Props
  • A digital camera
  • Enthusiasm


Let’s get started!

Step One:

We begin by searching for artwork. We use lap tops to search for that special work of art that each student would like to become a part of. 


Step Two:

Once chosen we printed the pictures and made lists of exactly what props we would need to remake the painting. Some were very simple, needing just the right shirt or easily made cardboard crown. Others were a group effort of bringing in grandma’s chair or baby bassinet. This lesson was unique in that it truly brought myself and all of my students closer as a group which are my favorite kinds of projects! 

At the high school level it is fairly easy to find things like special lighting stands and certain medieval costumes. Which is why I have not attempted this project since doing it 5 years ago. Now, as an elementary school teacher I question if my students have the maturity and drive to commit to such a feat! 


Step Three:

Using a digital camera I photographed each student. Seeing this was for an art history class and not photography I took on the task of photographing and used very minimal editing. The real goal is for students to immerse themselves into the life of their painting’s subject!

Looking back at these breathtaking images… I think I may have to try this one again. 

Have Fun!


Student Examples:











11Image result for mona lisa