Skip to main content

Imaginary Landscapes

Shara Hughes often begins a composition with a mark or a color, then improvises around it. She said: “I dye the canvas a certain color and then it sparks something inside of me to then make another move.” This painting is part of a series of imaginary landscapes. In each of these scenes, Hughes includes a painted frame around the edge of the canvas, offering a window into another world.

Find a partner and make one drawing each, from your imagination. Use colored pencils or markers. Start by making a quick abstract mark on separate pieces of paper. It could be a wavy line, a rectangle, or a blob. Trade drawings and transform the mark your partner made into a fantasy landscape. Share your drawings with your family. Can you find the first mark you made?

See all Whitney Kids Art Challenges.

Shara Hughes, In The Clear, 2016. Oil, acrylic, and dye on canvas, 68 1/16 × 59 7/8 in. (172.9 × 152.1 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Purchase, with funds from Joel and Anne Ehrenkranz 2017.169. © Shara Hughes



A 30-second online art project:
Amelia Winger-Bearskin, Sky/World Death/World

Learn more

Learn more at