Here are some images from the week of students working on their art:
Students are working on their Environment, Space, and Place projects this week. This theme is always an interesting one to see unfold because some students stick to more standard definitions of the theme, where as others go way out there in exploring ideas around how we interact in environments and how places impact our lives.
Here are some images from the week of students working on their art:
This past week, we finished up our latest theme in class: Environment, Space, and Place. Students really pushed themselves with a variety of media and outcomes. It was fun to see the evolving pieces over time and how students adapted their pieces based on feedback and learning new skills in class. I am excited to move onto our next theme which will deal with objects, but before we do, here are some highlights from the completed works (all of which can be seen on our Artsonia gallery):
Nate: For this project, I made a model of the silver lake sand dunes. I made this because I spend a lot of time up there in the summer and it is a really cool place to be. I made It with out any houses or building to show how it might look like without any people. To make this, first I made the shape of the sand dunes with foam. After this, I covered the whole thing in plaster. I then painted it with acrylic paint. To make the water sparkle, I mixed blue paint with sparkly silver paint. After that, I painted white in the lake to make it look like waves.
Gracie: For this piece, I chose to use pencils and experiment with different values. I think the dark values I used in the piece really made it different from other pencil drawing I’ve done before. I also used texture in my artwork. For example the bacon trees added a lot of texture to the piece and make it look different than what you would typically see. Lastly, I incorporated contrast between the elements to show my Ideas. There is definitely contrast between the smooth bone and the rough and ridged bacon trees.
Corrina: I decided to use pencil dark and light colors. These shades had started out with a simply regular pencil shade and darken the sky as the drawing continued. I also used graphite sticks to shade in the drawing. This skiing wonderland has trees, snowblowers, ski lift, and yes skiers. The darker sky and clouds made the affect that it was snowing and the snow blowers added to the snowing effect. The girl on the ski lift is stopped and looking at the beautiful snowing ski with the absence of light.
Colton: For this projects I decided to use Google Sketchup to make an architectural piece. I used the computer again because I feel a lot more confident using it instead of a pencil and paper. Using the computer helped a lot because I can create 3D pictures and sculptures and use my imagination with the tools provided on the computer. I didn't use any tutorials or help to create this. I simply played around with the different tools until I got the hang of it. I decided to make a giant tree house with a main cabin,(Middle) and two guest cabins for visitors. On the far left deck there is also a hot tub. To get in/out of the tree house you can use the stairs, elevator, slide, or zip-line. The zip-line leads to the Olympic-sized swimming pool. The stairs lead you to a large putting green.
Josh: I used pencils because I felt they were an easy material to use for an early project. They helped me show many details and shading with ease which is what I was aiming for. Elements and principles I used mainly were value and texture. The value helps communicate by adding depth and shadowing to have a good point of view. Texture like the leaves and the grass helps the viewer by showing more detail of the environment and what it is like.
Jewel: I created this artwork to signify environment, space or place. I was trying to communicate that you can only run away from things and feel safe in your home, which is your environment of where ever you feel safe, you can call home. I choose these materials because I realized I couldn't get my point across with a simple drawing. I wanted to go beyond. The contrast and the colors help make the piece stand out and show the important parts of my piece. Like how the heart is pink and one of the only colors in the piece. I used the leaves on the roof to represent that your home doesn't have to be perfect to be you're home. Its just a place where your heart may find peace.
Damien: In my piece of art, used various materials to achieve the texture and balance I did. The materials I used were construction paper, clay, temper paint, hot glue, cardboard, and markers. I tried to achieve the concept of balance with putting the pots on corners and in multiples of three. I also tried to achieve the concept of texture with the bricks I drew on the walls and the vines sort of growing out of the ground and the waterfall even having bubbles. I wanted to make my mini replica of the hanging gardens of Babylon look almost alive even though it isn’t even made of living plants.
Play is hard work.
Sometimes I worry that I give my students too much time when they are working on a project. There will be some straying from the assignment to chat with table-mates, go on random searches on the internet, or the occasional wandering around the classroom. However, this is a part of the process of work. When I work, I do not sit in silence from beginning to end. I take brain breaks and stretch my legs as I glean inspiration from random sources. I talk with others throughout to try and find other ideas. Sometimes I completely break from a project and work on something silly, just for fun.
Play is a part of the process.
Students are finishing up their projects this week and preparing for their unit quiz that will cover color theory, perspective drawing, and artists we used as inspiration (among other things). In addition, some students are taking the time left over before we begin something new to play, experiment and try out new ideas using a variety of media.
Here are some images of us at work:
This week we transitioned from thinking about what makes us who we are to exploring the places we inhabit. With the theme Environment, Space, or Place in mind, students examined various works by artists throughout history before coming up with their own ideas on how they wanted to tackle the topic.
One resource we used to help us along the way was this video from The Art Assignment.
In addition to this video, which explored the importance of the figure/ground relationship, we also did some demonstrations on one and two-point perspective, color mixing, as well as a few Photoshop Challenges that explored how you can create the illusion of space. It was fun to see students
Here are some of those works:
I can never thank Ian Sands enough for sharing this tutorial online. It has helped me in so many sick-day situations and I have continued to use it as a quick and easy tutorial to get kids to understand that Photoshop can be used for more than Google grabbing and pasting.
This is a very easy lesson on how to make your name on Graffiti Creator, screen shot it, and place it on something else in Photoshop.
This exercise helps students understand how they can use the pen tool in Photoshop and also demonstrates the use of perspective in a digital way.
It has been really rewarding to see students go through processes and select the materials and ideas that they want to explore with this theme in mind. I have had to do a little more conferencing with this theme, though, to get kids to dig a little deeper and go beyond the basic landscape.
Here are some images of our process so far:
To coordinate with our theme (and celebrate Halloween), I dressed up as Bob Ross today. It was fun to see the reaction of students and teachers alike!
In the spirit of Earth Day, both 7th and 8th grade students worked on finishing environmental pieces this week, some of which will make it to the Sooper Art Competition. The timing for this project and competition are perfect to get students thinking about their environment and how they can positively impact the future through their present actions.
Thursday and Friday and Monday was spent away from my students. When this happens, I feel bad, but I was hard at work each day working on educational issues important to my field.
Thursday and Friday was spent in Lansing. For the past two years, I have been working with a team of Visual Arts Educators in the State of Michigan on the Michigan Arts Education Instruction and Assessment Project. This project is offered to Arts teachers as a solution for implementing and developing high quality programs and assessing those programs and students within. I am very proud of the work I have been able to do, although it does require some time away from my students to work in Lansing with the other teachers and project management involved.
On Monday, I had the honor to present to Student Teachers at the Fire Up! conference at Aquinas College. It was really fun to share the amazing things my students do with the power of technology and how we integrate our learning in many ways and break down classroom walls to engage globally. Here is a picture of one of the groups I had the pleasure to present to on Monday (and as you can see, they were a fun bunch):
Even though I was away, students have been hard at work making loads of art. My 7th graders have finished two major projects in the past few days and my 8th graders are starting to wrap up their Environment/Space/Place projects. Here are some pictures of what has been accomplished since last time:
7th grade Space Projects
Ian Sands (a High School teacher in NC) posted this tutorial a while back and it has been an amazing resource for my students and I in learning new ways to use basic Photoshop tools. Thanks again, Ian - I owe you another scone at NAEA in March. You can see a full gallery of results on Artsonia, but here are few:
7th grade Knots
Students have been working on these colorful knots for the past week or so. they have learned about line, symmetry, color, and various application techniques of colored pencil, watercolor, and Sharpie. It was fun to see the results as students made choices about how to construct their design, color it, and add finishing details.
8th grade process pictures
Each of the following students is working with similar subject matter (home, interior/exterior space), but attacking the visual representation in very diverse ways. It has been fun to see how students interpret this assignment and the plans they have made in their sketchbooks be realized in their work.
I am getting really excited and a little nervous as we finish up this theme; nervous because I am worried about time and some students waiting until the last minute to get their work in and excited to see if this all turns out as amazing as I know it can be! I will post some finished examples tomorrow and as they start to roll in from students.
8th grade students took up the challenge earlier in the week to work with environments, spaces, and places for this next project. We finished up planning mid-week and it has been fun to see the diverse choice of materials (yet again) that students selected for enact their vision when exploring the topic. From paint, to paper, to clay, and cardboard, these students are utilizing many mediums to engage with the concept and share their ideas.
When you look at a work of art, can you see the amount of thinking or prep work that goes into it? This is something we are working through as students move from the planning stages of their assignments and into applying their ideas to their projects.
This week has been a whirlwind! Students have been drawing, painting, sculpting, entering competitions, and working out their Photoshop skills! It has been amazing to see and be a part of and here a a few highlights from the week:
1. ArtPrize Entries
Students worked on their ArtPrize ArtStart online Youth competition entries this week. It was really fun to see them come up with so many different ideas inspired by what they saw art ArtPrize this year. You can view more on our online gallery at www.artsonia.com/schools/byron1. We will find out the winners of this first ever youth competition this weekend - good luck to all who took the plunge and entered!
1. Photoshop Phriday
Photoshop is an amazing tool. I am very fortunate that my students all get the opportunity to use this tool on their computers whenever they want. As a 1:1 school, students have access to their MacBooks daily and students in Art have Photoshop installed on their machines. I decided to try something new this year to replace the common sketchbook assignment and that was Photoshop Phriday. The goal was that we would start a Photoshop work on the first Friday of the month and throughout the month use various tools and acquired skills to add elements of what we were making in class to it until we turned it in by the end of the last Friday of the month. You can see the full array of examples on our gallery.
3. Rocking Artsonia!
Our classroom has been an active member of Artsonia since 2007. It has been through various updates and changes over the years, but the new use of Art Classroom mode has been revolutionary for both me and my students in our classroom! Instead of taking individual pictures myself and uploading their work to the site, students take the pictures and use a class code to upload their projects to the proper page. They edit their images and write corresponding learning statements to help the viewer understand what we were learning in class and how that shows through in their work. The response has been amazing - we are currently ranked #1 in Michigan and have close to 500 works posted in just the first 24 days of school! That is amazing! Please consider leaving a comment for one of our artists and checking out their learning journey as you read their statements that go along with their art.
4. Other amazing work that happened this week:
Teaching Visual Arts since 2004 and making images since picking up a crayon.