In the middle of the week, I demonstrated felting and used the wonderful resources of Cassie Stephens to my students. Many decided to try their hand at it (as you can see in the images below).
Students worked on a new challenge this week that asked them to consider the items we value and those we do not. In doing so, they also were tasked with using media or materials that they have yet to use in their work. In addition to viewing artists' works that focus on objects and items as their subject, students were introduced to the idea of repurposing materials that are not usually thought of when making art or using materials they have yet to try this semester.
In the middle of the week, I demonstrated felting and used the wonderful resources of Cassie Stephens to my students. Many decided to try their hand at it (as you can see in the images below).
This project has been one of my favorites for years. It has also been pretty successful in yielding unique pieces that have done well in competition. I am excited to see where students end up with these works and which we might be able to save for next year's competition cycle.
After School Art students have been hard at work making the banner to represent their class that will hang with the others in the cafetorium. After months of sifting through ideas, plans, and lots of cutting and arranging, students started to finalize their work by actually putting the pieces together. The hope and goal is to have this complete and ready for display by our May 23rd event, Arts a la Mode!
Last week, students spent their time working with objects. They used the theme "Objects, Artifacts, and Things You Leave Behind" to explore media and ways to use symbols to represent a whole host of ideas. It was fun to see students go outside of their comfort zone and try new ways of working (one of the criteria was that they were not allowed to use a material previously used).
The results were both exciting and insightful. You can view some of the highlights below.
My T.: For my art work I used water color with salt, regular paint, and made origami swans/birds. Some techniques i used was when I painted water color on my paper was that I put salt on it to add more detail to make it look more in the daylight time. Art can show the concept of the theme because the artist Mitchell Feinberg uses objects and and things you leave behind in the theme. This artist uses this because in one of their artwork they had cigarettes in it and that is an object you leave behind because once you are done with it you throw it away and don't use it again. In another artwork of theirs they had pills in it and that is an object you use that is also part of the theme.
Samantha K.: For this art piece I used the option of creating your own scratch paper. I drew the actual picture on the original paper with oil pastels and once I was done with that I added paint to the surface of my oil pastel picture. Then I used different designs like circles, crosshatching, and just different lines to make patterns as I scratched of the paint. This picture follows the theme because the two clocks are the times of birth that my brother and I were born at, the water running down off the clocks resemble the tears that were shed during that moment of birth for me and my brother. I was inspired by Mitchell Feinberg because my brothers name is mitchell and I was also inspired by the clocks that he used in two of his pictures. That is my artwork and how I made it.
Matt M.: For this project I chose to use paper golden venture origami to create this American flag. I chose to use this material because I thought it was a really cool thing to make stuff with and we also were not able to use materials that we used in prior projects which left me with little options. I chose to make an American flag out of this because our baseball chose to honor fallen soldiers\police officers so our country has a totally new meaning to me and means a lot. This artwork can show the artists that we studied as well because all the artists used simple objects to make their art and made things with meaning to them or to other people as well. This can show the artist Jim Dine because Jim also chose to use very simple objects to make his unique pieces of artwork like I did in my project.
Sydney C.: The Bubble Gum Movement piece that I have made really fits the project theme, Objects, Artifacts, and Things You Leave Behind because of the materials I have used. Using gum wrappers symbolizes how many just throw away gum wrappers and leave them behind when I decided to change that and make it into a really awesome piece. Then I realized that I had to use a different material and decided that print making was the way to go. Print making is a still life that I can create into my own using a block print. First I took a side shot of my face and then I put into photoshop and traced it on a piece of paper. Then, I rubbed the trace onto the block and then carved it out using the carving tools. I then got inspiration from Andy Warhol to use pop art colors and add the word pop onto the block print. I wanted this piece to be still life and not 3 dimensional. This piece was inspired by Andy Warhol and the idea of leaving bubble gum wrappers behind.
Ella P.: My donut hat that I made for this project show how you can take anting you want and make it into something extraordinary. What I did was take socks and turned them into a donut. I used felt and beads to create frosting and springs to decorate the donuts. Hopefully my artwork and inspire other people to make ordinary object into something cool.
One of the best things to have happened as a result of opening up my classroom through the pursuit of exploring themes, is how many times I say, "Why not."
Want to try printmaking with a tire? Why not.
Want to make a plaster hand pedestal? Why not.
Want to make a hat of cloth donuts? Why not.
Want to have an impromptu photoshoot with a tiny turtle? Why not.
My hope is that in embracing the "why not" aspect of my classroom, students will start to break down the barriers that prevent them from creating innovative pieces and just making "good" art. I want my classroom to act as a space to try new things, explore ideas, and learn from both success and failure.
I also want it to be a place that allows work to be shared with a wider audience. Thanks again to all who voted for Jewel as artist of the week on Artsonia! We are excited to celebrate the recognition and also use the Blick gift cards for new art supplies!
Students are well on their way to finished works as they select materials and enact plans charted at the end of last week. Because we are focusing on objects, artifacts, and things left behind, solutions for this challenge are more divergent than in past projects. It could also be due to the fact that one of the constraints of the assignment is using a material that they had not yet used.
It has been a lot of fun seeing the progress being made and I am excited to see what becomes of these works as they finish up next week.
Students are almost complete with uploading their work to Artsonia from the last project. Here are some more pieces from students from this week.
Ella: My piece is made from pen, and wire. It came as a difficult art work to make, it was a struggle at first with many hard collaborations we went threw. But in the end I would take the head or cap of the pen and the bottom, and would take one of them and wrap in with wire, and wrap one piece at a time. But after lots of try I finally got good at it, and it started clicking. I used pens for this piece for my lost idem, because if you are me, you use a lot of pens and pencils. But my art is not only that, it is a necklace. I had gotten a idea, or something of the sorts from the artist Mr. Wayne Thiebaud he has uses very feminine, so he persuaded me to make jewelry, so i made a necklace that may be different from others. But its my own master piece.
Ethan: This is a picture of a house on a scenic plot of land, this is inspired from multiple techniques of graphite drawing. This piece puts great emphasis on the horizon, and orthogonal lines. The theme of this piece is Objects Artifacts, and Things left behind, this theme is represented mainly by the fact that the house is all alone, with multiple largely grown trees, and mountains.
Lily: In my photoshop piece, I decided to make a collage of different potato chips that I have designed myself. To keep a hint of texture, I used the quick selection tool to select the area with only the logo so I could keep the logo identical for every bag I created. Plus, I attempted to keep the idea of unity in mind and make sure their was a lot of variety in the space. The artist, Jim Dine does a great job at keeping the theme of objects and things left behind included in his piece. For example, he has a couple pieces where he uses different hammers in different colors and sizes.
In addition to finishing up this project, students got started on their next theme: We've Got Issues. Students brainstormed ideas around issues they would like to create work about before using PBS LearningMedia to inform their work. Student choices ranged in a variety of avenues from civil rights to animal cruelty to sports injuries to the recent attacks in Paris.
After settling on ideas and doing some research, students sketched out ideas and worked in table groups to pitch ideas and get feedback. It was fun to see conversations that resulted as students asked clarifying questions about the work and gave suggestions to make it stronger. Most students finished up their preliminary sketches today and will complete their work next week.
To finish out this week, the BCPS Visual Arts department worked together to create our Winter Show exhibit at the Van Singel Fine Arts Center. We will have our Artist Reception on Monday and I am very proud of the selection of work and am excited for many of those works who will proceed to compete at the Scholastic Art Awards later this month.
Today was the last official work day for the current theme of Objects, Artifacts, and Things You Leave Behind. It has been a delight to see the array of works that have been passing through our online gallery as students complete, photograph, and upload their work to Artsonia.
Students really pushed themselves this time because they were asked to use a material they had yet to create with. This limitation opened up a slew of new opportunities for students and here are some of the highlights:
Alexis: In my artwork, I drew with a picture of a girl looking into a mirror and seeing a monster. I drew this to represent depression. I drew this to show that some people look in the mirror and see something that is a monster and they think they aren't good enough. But that’s not true because everybody is beautiful the way they are. Also, in my art, I drew the monster surrounding the girl as if the monster was a cage. In the background of my art, I drew hands pointing at the girl and I drew lips that are calling the girl names. If you look closely at the girl, you can see that she has no torso but instead it’s just a skeleton of a back. I drew this to show body image issues with some girls and I wanted to draw the girl this way to show how girls think they need to be as skinny as a skeleton to be pretty. In my drawing, I drew with drawing pencils, and graphite. I then erased parts of the pencil to give my artwork some highlights. My art relates to the theme because I feel like this is something left behind. I feel like this because this is a huge issue for many girls and I feel that people don't know how big of a problem it is. Also, the mean things that get said to you always stay with you, but these things are the underestimated problems that are left behind in your life, and you just have to let go and don't let the monster in the mirror get into your life.
Ana: In my comic story, I mostly used color pencils, ink pens to bold out the details, color sticks, also some yellow marker to make the necklace more bolded and noticeable. My work does show the art concept of Objects, Artifacts, and Things you leave behind, because my story focuses on this necklace that is lost and left in an unknown place for a decade before being found and returned. It is also a object and artifact because it is a necklace that is forgotten, and this boys find it and gives it to his girlfriend as a gift, but it had treasured by her when she was a young girl, what makes it so valuable and even more dear to her now is that her love was the one who found it and given it back to her. This story also seems to deal with fate like the necklace was meant to be brought back, but only to be brought back by the right person. My story kinda goes along with Mitchell Feinberg's art of the chocolate treat and it projects and deals with time, as my comic in the part where the necklace is lost in the trees to watch as things around it, leave and come only it's missing its owner or someone who has not come to bring it back. In the beginning it project a little girl with her missing teeth, so that indicates she about 8yrs old, when she playing in an open field, then it shows her with another woman going out of the park leaving the necklace behind that had seemed to be dropped. This is where the bird flies into the scene, picks the little necklace up and drops it in a tree where it show of the little blue bird's nest, as the weeks pass for the hatchlings have hatched, too coming of fall and winter, then months then years it has been hung up in the nest. On a faithful the lightning hitting that particular branch that held the necklace for those long years, which soon a boy finally found the necklace after the lightning strike then only to give it back to his girlfriend as a gift. Where this girl was the prior owner, the little girl in the beginning of the story.
Denver: For this particular project I decided to take a picture using my experience as a guide. I used the rule of thirds to make the photo more interesting. I also took the picture in a area were their was two lights one that made a reflection off of the plates and one that lit up the photo. This piece goes with the project because I took just an everyday item and created a piece of art by taking a picture of a broken plate against whole plates. I made a normal household object into something with meaning. This fallows Mitchell Feinberg the most because like me we both use photos to show the story.
Nick: To make this piece, I used a ton of gummy bears. The 3 triangles are covered in gummy bears, and there's a flashlight shining up them to light them up. The cylinder-like things are also made of gummy bears. I hot glued gummy bears on top of gummy bears to create them. Then I placed a candle in the middle to light them up. I then photographed it in my dark garage. On iPhoto, I edited the picture a little to make the candle lights seem brighter and to take a little of the glare off of the bottom gummy bears on the triangles. My work is similar to that of Janet Fish because of the reflective qualities it has. The gummy bears on the triangles are reflecting the light, which is why you can see them. If they weren't reflecting the light, they'd just be dark and they wouldn't show up. However, my work is also like that of Wayne Thiebaud. That is because both my piece and his have things that are repeated throughout the piece. The gummy bears in my piece are the repeated objects just like how the pieces of cake are repeated in one of his pieces. Finally, my piece is like some of Jim Dine's work because some of his pieces and my piece are both sculptures. Mine is sculpture made out of gummy bears, like his are sculptures made out of tools.
Corrinne: The reason I chose to do this for this project is because I really like photography. I thought that since a camera is an object, and could be an artifact in the future, it would fit in this project great. The camera was an observational drawing from a picture on my computer that I traced over in pen. Then, I decided to add texture and crosshatch the middle with a fine tip Sharpee, a regular pen, and gel pens. Finally, the background is a watercolor of only primary colors, because the colors of gel pens I used on the inside were just those colors too. An artist that inspired me originally was Audrey Flack because her paintings looked like real photos. So, I thought I was going to do a photography project. But, then I realized I could spin it around and draw a camera.
Sarah: My piece shows the theme of how objects are left behind because in the story, the character named Piccolo has a hat that goes on an adventure to find another hat. This hat ends up finding a girl hat and they fall in love, but their human owners are lonely without their hats so they try to find their hats. In the end, they all find each other and live happily ever after. This is, in a way, like the artist Wayne Thiebaud, who illustrations mostly clothing, such as a hat or shoes.
Lilly: For my project I decided to make a necklace, because I thought that it was something that not a lot of people do, and I thought that it would be fun. To make the fringe on the necklace, I cut small pieces of brown wire do to size. Then I twisted the pieces of wire and left a loop on the top, so that I could slip it easily on to the black leather. To twist the wire, I just gripped the top with my fingers to create the loop, and then just twisted the wire. After I was done twisting the wire, I just cut of the excess and looped it on to the black leather. To make the necklace be able to be different lengths based on your preference, I made two slip knots so that you could change how far down the necklace goes. Some elements of the art are shape, because the fringe are a different shape than necklaces usually have. Another element is texture, because when you feel the fringe it kind of feels rough but smooth at the same time. Some examples of principles of design are unity, because of how the pieces of fringe look together. One more example of principles of design contrast, because of how the brown and black contrast each other. This piece of art kind of reminds me of Mitchell Feinberg, because in his artwork he uses the same objects, such as shoes, apples, and bullets. In my piece, I used a lot of the twisted wire to represent fringe. Kind of like how Mitchell Feinberg uses many of the same objects in his art.
Brody: For my art I think I used good texture with the things I took pictures of because you can see what I took pictures of and how the would feel. Also, I think I used a good variety of things I took pictures of because not one of them are really close to one another. One thing that I used for every picture was the camera because it took good pictures of things. Another tool I used was the brightness tool in Artsonia to make my art have more texture. I would compare my art to Jim Dines art because I took pictures of things and put them together to make my name.
Paige: In this piece of art, I used many different materials, including newspaper and oil pastel. I used the newspaper as the floor of the room, along with a white oil pastel to lightly color over the newspaper. I also used metallic pencils to shade in and color the different objects in the room. In my art, I can show the concept of this theme because it is showing food, drinks, and some other objects that a person left behind at a diner. When looking at the artist Wayne Thiebaud, I can compare my art to his because he had food in one of his art pieces, and he had some drinks in another one of his pieces that must have been left behind from somebody.
Kasey: Objects can represent many different things that we encounter in life or today's society. In Mitchell Feinberg's art piece that was made with shoe in the shape of a heart. Represents the Boston Marathon Bombing that happened a couple of years ago. Also in Jim Dine's art pieces he has tools that are outlined in black then has shadowing. This represents his life as a kid because his dad was an owner of a workshop.
Clay: In my artwork, Force Field I have a metal ball made out of wire. That could represent the force field. Then I have a have a person in their that has the colors blue, green, and red. He is hovering inside the force field. How I made him hover was that I poked a hole in both his hands and slit a smaller more bendable wire that I wrapped around one of the sides of the big wire. I did that on each hand. I had a lot of fun making this and I am pretty proud of it.
As we finish up the Thanksgiving break, I have a lot to be thankful for this season. I have an awesome group of students this year, with amazing ideas and the guts to give new things a try. I have been given some fantastic opportunities to share ideas with other teachers (with even more on the horizon). And I have a great family who supports me along the way.
This week, before we departed for our long weekend of family and food, students finally glazed their bowls for our 2016 Empty Bowls event. This year we are changing up the event by pushing it later into the Spring and swapping out soup for ice cream. I am excited to get moving on firing these bowls, as students did a nice job of applying glazes and finishing them for the community fundraiser.
Students also worked on their projects before we headed off to enjoy break. This theme, which is "Objects, Artifacts, and Things You Leave Behind." has asked students to consider how we interact with items around us and what we deem as important. Here are some images of the BCWMS artists at work:
Once students finish a theme, they are introduced to the next one through Schoology. I give them a series of questions to answer and artists to view. Once they generate ideas by taking notes, they work on sketches of what it is they would like to create. During this time, they also workshop the ideas with others in class to get feedback and adjust ideas as needed. When an idea is settled on, students work on creating a production schedule and I give them feedback on their ideas before starting. We make sure to do a lot of font-loading of information before students start getting into the actual making.
Here are some images of students working so far, manipulating materials to explore the latest theme: Objects, Artifacts, and Things you leave behind:
Students used objects as their point of inspiration for the project we just finished up in class. Whether it was the absence of the object, the transformation of an object, or the assemblage of many objects, students looked at a variety of solutions when tackling the topic of "Objects, Artifacts, and Things Left Behind."
We wrapped up the last project theme yesterday before breaking for Thanksgiving this week. It is always fun for me to view the work students have spent time imagining, planning, and bringing to life as I read their statements on Artsonia. There were a lot of ways the theme of Objects, Artifacts, and Things you can leave behind and I when viewing the results of the work students made, I feel like they exhausted them all. Here are some of the diverse results:
Kollan D.: I used a watercolor around the fire extinguisher to give it a fiery look. I thought after I made it from collage that it would be ironic if the fire extinguisher was on fire. I think this explores the theme of "objects" because fire extinguishers are something you see every day in most buildings. Art can make normal object seem interesting by using bright colors, like Jim Dine and Wayne Thiebaud.
Kenzie G.: I really liked the idea of painting on objects so create the look of a painting. By doing so, I am creating the idea that everything is not as it seems. I personally play volleyball, so I knew how to make the volleyball seem more realistic. Also, volleyball takes up a huge portion of my time, and this is just another way of expressing my log for the sport. Alexa Mead was my inspiration for this piece as she paints on objects to make them look like a painting. I liked the theme that there is more beneath the surface of something, and she conveys it well.
Kelsey C.: I used broken crayons and my arm brace for this 3D art piece. I used the broken crayons to portray all of the broken things that the brace holds and keeps in place. I chose to do this concept because I tore my ligament off my bone and this brace is a huge part of my life right now and I thought it would be a cool way to portray something that is going on with my life right now. As I said before, this brace is a huge object in my life at this moment. It was important for me to show that this brace has made an impact on me.
Austin W.: In this project, I used printmaking. I used light, bright colors for the background and then used string to block the dark colors and show the bright colors! I used several other techniques and tools to make this art look so interesting and colorful such as bubble wrap, string, and other tools used particularly for this project. The artist that inspired me to do this art was probably Jim Dine because he uses lots of color and cool and different designs for his masterpieces. I also liked how in my project I used every color to drag out the amount of color in the project. Printmaking allows everybody to make cool artwork even using useless materials that will make the artwork look even more interesting and have such cool designs. Finding any item with bizarre designs and awesome imprints through out the house or room will even make this project look cool!
Heather B.: The materials I used are pastels and sharpie, I used pastels so that I could blend the colors and make the lava lamp effect. With the bright colors standing out from the dark. I used sharpie to make circles for the background in all three lava lamps. One technique I used is blending colors together to make a new shade. This helped get the effect of the “lava” part standing out and looking more like the real thing and like its glowing. I used my lava lamp at home for a referance and this is an object that has meaning to me. That is then how is fits the theme objects, artifacts, and things you leave behind. This also shows the theme like Mitchell Feinberg’s work that has many of the same thing that makes up in piece of art work. As mine is three lava lamps (objects) that make up one piece of art work.
Lauren D.: I used photography to make this piece. I took a photo of my shoes on the bus and turned the background black and white. This shows still life because it is focusing on an inanimate object. The bus is a place where I can focus and create new ideas. I’m trying to say this with my picture by making the shoes pop and background fade, as if you are staring straight at the shoes. This shows still life because you have a meaning in an inanimate object. My piece can be compared to Mitchell Fienberg’s art. He uses photograph to show his concept, and I did too. He also uses clothing in his art like shirts or watches, and I used shoes.
Tryston V.: I choose to use felt because felt is fun and it is easy to do but it looks really cool. Also i can bring this home and give it to my sister as a Christmas Gift. I did not really know about felt but i will definitely use it more. This can relate to me because it is a sports shoe and i play lots of sports like basketball and i run sometimes. I love playing sports but i also love seeing shoes and looking at them so this fits my personality perfectly.
Maddie D.: The reason why I chose to do an old fashioned camera is because I thought of things that have changed a lot in the past few decades. One of those things is technology. I thought that by doing an old camera can show how much better things have become. I used plexi glass to make this. I did an etching technique and I used printing. I thought that this would be very cool and different if I did it this way and I added the designs just to spice it up a little bit. My personal connection to this piece is that when I go to my grandpa's house he has this old camera on a shelf on display and I always thought that it looked really cool and I liked how it was an antique. For this theme I was inspired by Mitchell Feinberg. I saw the printing that he made in those clay pieces and I thought that those were really cool. So I did a print myself and just used a different kind of printing.
Anna P.: This piece is very similar in it's theme and concept to my other piece, which is a necklace made out of calligraphy nibs. This is a glove that has calligraphy nibs sewed onto it. This shows the theme of things you leave behind and the concept that anything can be transformed into art. I took an ordinary object and made it extraordinary in a way that others may not think to do. By doing this, I believe more people can find a connection with my work because of the fashion element. This piece is similar to the piece by Jim Dine, in which he created a separation wall using tools. Both of us created a new object out of other more common objects.
Olivia L.: This triangular box has three sides because it represents the three possible out comes of a soccer game. One you can win, two you could lose, and three you could tie a game. This is similar we every competition or problem in life. This can be related to every community of people. This concept of three outcomes is also personal to me because soccer is my favorite sport. I used similar concepts as the artist Audrey Flack. They are similar because we both use very bright colors. This was a very fun piece to make.
Teaching Visual Arts since 2004 and making images since picking up a crayon.