Monday, September 26, 2016

The potential of shapes

So Art 1 has been looking at shapes and artists that use shapes to create their artwork.  We looked at Frank Stella, Gustav Klimt and Malika Favre.  And while they had to do small studies of all of these artists artwork, I think most of my students were inspired by Malika Favre.  If you haven't heard of her I highly recommend looking up her work.  She is a contemporary graphic design artist that is currently working out of London, but some of her work has been for American companies.  She has a style that is some where between pop art and op art, but with lots of basic shapes and designs.

My students were asked to create a work of art out of construction paper that used shapes.  They could use all or some of their influence from the above artists.

Carter W.

Cassie H.

Damaris W.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Tangled in Zentangles

To continue Art 1 on their journey through the elements and principles of art we looked at a variety of lines and now added shapes through the form of zentangles.  I personally love zentangels.  They are fun, relaxing projects where you can focus but at the same time don't have to stress out types of projects.  I mean who doesn't love to doodle?  You should really see all of my workshop notes.

This lesson all emphasizes negative space which can be a really interesting feature in a project if done well like these examples below.

Damaris W.

Abby K.

Cassie H.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Fire and paint, oh my!!

Who wouldn't want to start out the school year with a little smoke, fire and paint?  What a perfect way to get the advanced classes back into the swing of things then learning new techniques.

A few days before school started I happen to catch a video on the Art of Education website about how to use smoke to shade a work of art.  So of course we had to try it.  And just so you know, once you get the hang of it, it actually works really well.  You just light a candle and run the very top of the flame over where you want to shade the artwork.  The paper has to be above the flame so you feel like you are working upside down, also be careful of candle wax drips.   If you want it darker you have to run it over that spot a few more times and if you want it lighter you run it over that area less.  Also when you are done you can easily erase any areas that you want white.  Just be careful to keep the flaming moving over the paper, if you pause too long in a spot you will set the paper on fire.

Of course this is where a few of my students started having some fun.  They would smoke the paper for awhile and then create small holes (or at least try to keep them small) to make spots you can see through.

Well were does the paint come in on this project?  Did you know that acrylic house paint can float?  Really!!  IF you take a small spoonful and just very carefully drag it over the top of the water, the paint will just float there.  If you get too big of globs or are too high above the water it will sink, but if you are just in the right spot you can created marbled paper with half the prep work.  Once you have the paint on top the way you like it, just carefully lay a piece of paper on top and gently press it down,  then lift it up.  And WOW,  amazing works of colored paper.

I then had them combine these into a quote that they found.  Here are a few results:




Friday, September 16, 2016

Light up the back room?

Okay it would be so much more fun if we could do some light painting photos that could light up the night, but since school is offered during the day and most of my advanced students will take their photos with the camera on their phone, we have to settle for the back room of the library to try out this technique.

This technique is so much fun to do.  I always have kids that drag their feet because they think it is going to be so dumb, and then for some reason it  takes them days to get just the right shot because they are having so much fun.

Emily A.

Emily H.

Micah A.

Madison S. 
Will S.
Again, these are really simple examples, but I would love to see what the kids could do if they had some real space, time and maybe sparklers.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Playing with our lines

Okay, so I have learned their names and now it is time to get started with the really nitty gritty dirty work of learning about art.  So where better to start then at the beginning with the humble line.

We learned all about lines and what they can be and where they can go.  It is truly as fascinating as it sounds, but after all of these years I try to juice it up a little bit.

This year I also introduced them to a few line artists that I really like.  We looked at Bridget Riley and Piet Mondrian for our famous artists, but I also threw in Julianna Kuntsler, Jonathon Franzen, and Marcos Bernardes.  If you haven't checked out the works from these other three artists, I highly recommend them.  My favorite is Jonathon Franzen and his simple, yet beautiful style where he makes a line with every breathe.  It is a free form line that tries to get as close as he can to the line he made before without touching them, but in the end they form gorgeous wave patterns that are mesmerizing.

We took inspiration from all of those artists and tried to create works of our own.  Here are some of our more successful works.

Damaris W. - Diamond in lines

Autumn J. - Heart

Jaizen H.

Mykell T.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

What's in a name?

What better way to get to know your students that to have them do a name project for the start of the school year.  This way as they create their first work of art I can also cheat and learn the names of the students that I don't know.  It is a true win win for a teacher.

I didn't give a lot of criteria for this project because I wanted them to have a chance to show me their creativity or lack there of.  This is also a great way to see who is going to give you their best and who will need help, sometimes not only in talent but in effort.

Here are a few of my favorites, I think you will see great things from some of my students this year.  I am excited.