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The Art of Face Painting



The Art of Face Painting
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   6.13

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    freehand, stencil, status, entertainment, versatile, tribal, various, sacred, wounds, cases, social, literally, painters, meaning, professional, artists
     content words:    Native Americans, Native American


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The Art of Face Painting
By Colleen Messina
  

1     Some artists "put on a happy face" literally...with paint! A painted red nose, chalky white skin, and a broad silly smile can transform an ordinary person into a cheerful clown. Face painting is a versatile art. Many cultures through the centuries have used face painting for different reasons.
 
2     Native Americans have considered face painting an art form since ancient times. It was used to show social status and tribal markings. They also decorated their faces for hunting. They painted their faces for battles. They used face painting for sacred tribal ceremonies. Each tribe had its own patterns and designs for face painting.
 
3     Native Americans created their paints from roots, berries, and tree barks. These materials were ground up to make a paste. They also used clay. Native American artists used colors carefully. Each color had a special meaning. However, these meanings could vary from tribe to tribe. For example, yellow often symbolized death. Some other popular colors for Native American face painting were red, black, white, and green.

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