Wednesday, December 5, 2012

After a crazy day in the art room....

Sometimes you just gotta laugh!

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

It's time for 'The Art of Ed Blog of the Year' Nominations!

Hey everyone! Follow this link to go and nominate your favorite blog(s) at The Art of Ed! I follow a lot of amazing art teacher blogs (many of which inspired me to start this one!) so I hope they all get the recognition they deserve. Even just the nominations page provides a welath of resources for great blogs to check out!

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Friday, November 9, 2012

What to do with all that leftover candy?

Paint it, of course! I had my more advanced Drawing and Painting students do photrealistic still life paintings of candy and while it proved to be pretty challenging, the kids rose to the occassion. I stressed the importance of keeping things simple in terms of the background because the intricate details of the candy and packaging posed enough of a challenge. They took a few photos of their setups and we worked together to choose the best composition. Here are some of the results...

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Friday, November 2, 2012

Once Upon A Time...

Recently, I asked my middle school classes to choose a scene from a classic fairy tale or book that they wanted to illustrate in a torn paper collage. I first showed them a little slideshow on the history of collage, touching on its roots with Picasso and Braque. Then, I provided them with a long list of stories that I thought might have great scenes to illustrate. The funny thing though with kids in middle school right now is that many of them consider Sponge Bob a classic childrens book... sooo I had to do a little bit of steering in the right direction, but most of them picked up on what I was trying to get them to do. They researched their chosen story and chose a few pictures to work from, selecting certain elements from each to create the perfect scene. Once their pictures were sketched out, they then began the INCREDIBLY long and tedious task of ripping and cutting small pieces from magazines that they collaged in a mosaic fashion to fill in the colors of their images. Did i mention that this took an incredibly long time??!! I would recommend having them use much smaller paper than I did (most of my kids did theirs at around 16"x20"), and perhaps allowing them to work on this project alongside another one so that they can have a break from time to time. The fact that I only see my middle school classes a few days a week was also a hinderance to their progress, so if you meet with yours everyday, you might have better luck with the production time. As always though, the middle school kids continue to surprise me with their work ethic, skill, and creativity!

The Tin Man's heart

Cinderella's Castle (6th Grade!)

Detail of 'Cinderella's Castle'

Alice in Wonderland

The Lion King

Willy Wonka (Johnny Depp version of course...ugh)

Detail of 'Willy Wonka'
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Monday, October 29, 2012

Pencil Transformation

I originally came accross this project in a book that I have called From Ordianry to Extraordinary by Ken Veith.

This book has a bunch of good projects that you dont see all the time, but this project is definitely one of my favorites. I've since seen a few versions of it floating around online. I was actually a little afraid to assign this for awhile thinking that it would be too hard for some of my beginning students, but boy was I wrong! The students moaned and groaned when I introduced the assignment, but they took off running and the end results were spectacular! Students had to choose an object, animal, or person to draw and construct the form completely out of drawn pencils. They could manipulate and distort the pencils as much as they needed to to create the desired shape and they were able to use specific parts of the pencils for different areas. I asked them to color them realistically with colored pencils, but i did allow a few to keep them black and white because they did such an amazing job with the shading. Here are are the finished products....

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Positive Negative Torn Paper Plants

For this project, I asked the students to go out and photograph trees and plants. I stressed the importance of framing the leaves against a blank background (like the sky or a blank wall) so that they could really tell the difference between the positive and negative space. We then tweaked them in Picasa and printed them out as high contrast black and white photos.

Working from the photo of their choice, the students drew the outline of their plants/leaves. They then had to tear black paper into tiny pieces and glue it down to fill in the positive space that makes up their plant. Next, they printed out a few pieces of patterned paper that they then tore to fill in the negative space/background.

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Fun and Games Drawings

I asked my students to bring in small game pieces and toys from home. They arranged a selected few items into a still life. The goal of the project was to do a colored pencil drawing that was photorealistic, paying close attention to lighting, color, and the size of the objects in relation to each other. I think they did a great job!

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