Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Butterflies and Snow!

What a short week this was! Sadly, there's not much to report, though I do have some beautiful butterfly images to share! Kids in Explorations in Art (1st -  3rd) created butterflies to donate to The Butterfly Project, an exhibit that will take place in the Spring of 2012 at Houston's Holocaust Museum.

We'll continue to work on butterflies throughout the entire school year, in both locations, so rest assured that you'll see many more of these beautiful creations in the future!

Well, it finally happened: The Big Snow! Jeffco announced early this morning that all schools would be closed. Hopefully, you're finding some time to go out and frolic, and perhaps build a snowman, snow woman, or an entire snow family! There's certainly enough of that fluffy white stuff out there to accommodate quite a crowd of snow creatures!

I found the image below, online, and it really inspired me! Maybe it will inspire you, too!

In lieu of this very short week, and the absence of opportunity for students to complete the web challenge, we'll repeat the challenge from the previous week's entry. Be sure to scroll down and read about La Gioconda. Also, please note that you have an opportunity to receive TWO ATCs for completing this assignment!

Enjoy your long weekend, Everyone! Remember to bring in your web challenge assignments next week. I'll be busy making ATCs for all you hard working artists! :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

O'Keeffe, Value, ATCs, Self-Portraits, and Masks!

We packed a lot of art into the past week's classes! So much so that I've had to create "mosaics" from the photos I took. Before we get to those, though, let's look at the beautiful, Southwest inspired watercolor by Celeste, done in Explorations in Art (4th-6th). Celeste has been studying the work of Georgia O'Keeffe, and we can definitely see the O'Keeffe influence here!

Watercolor No. 1, by Celeste
Other 4th - 6th Explorations students finished work on their Book of Kells drawings, and some began work on a new piece, The Logo Project, where they'll discover and hone their graphic design skills. Photos later!

The younger, 1st - 3rd Explorations in Art students completed work on their value drawings. First,the young artists learned what one of the elements of art -- value --means, then they created a drawing with pencil and colored it in using various values of a color. Following is a beautiful VALUE QUILT of their work:

Art from Paper students continued work on their Self-Portraits, which are really taking shape! Hopefully, next week, I'll have photos to share. Be sure to check back, because these portraits are AMAZING! 
Students who are enrolled in Mixed Media learned all about ATCs (Artist Trading Cards), and then created their own, using a variety of media. At the end of the class, students completed the lesson by having a trading session with their miniature works of art. It was a lot of fun! In fact, we've decided that this should be an ongoing project. Whenever time allows, each week (after finishing up the planned project) we'll take what we learned from that week's lesson to create ATCs. 

Above are some of the ATCs we created in class.

Ceramics I students continued work on a project they started the week before (details later!), and Ceramics II students began work on Haniwa figures. As the class period progressed, each figure's personality began to come through. Students decided to name their little Haniwas, based on the personality of the figure, and we'll  have photos (with names) when they're complete. These are so cute, they are not to be missed! Be sure to check back!

Drawing and Painting students spent some time looking into mirrors and creating Self-Portraits (featured below). When they were done, we held each portrait up to the artist who created it, and the results were uncanny! It was like looking at twins! Do you recognize the following artists?

Or perhaps you can figure out who some of these artists are! After finishing value drawings, students began work on MASKS:

They certainly look mysterious! We talked about how masks can be made to wear, or made to decorate a wall. Above are examples of both kinds.

I'm often surprised and delighted when I learn that a student has been working hard at home to finish or create a project, and I like to give special attention to these hard working artists! In fact, there should be some kind of award for this dedication to the craft. One of the most prolific artists in history was Vincent van Gogh. He worked tirelessly, often while experiencing serious illness, to create his art. So, in honor of Vincent, and in recognition of the hard work of these dedicated students, this week's 

goes to . . . (drum roll, please!)

Ike finished his color wheel mosaic, and Acacia created a very unique artwork with glue and Fruit Loops! Now, that's creative! If Jackson Pollock could see this, I'm sure he'd be impressed, and perhaps a bit hungry, too!

Last week I challenged students to learn what diptych and triptych mean. Tavia and Keith both came through. Better yet, Tavia created her own diptych! 
Fantastic work, Tavia! 
(Scroll down to see Tavia's diptych!) 
Tavia and Keith both earned ATCs for their efforts, and are in the running for the REALLY COOL PRIZES at the end of the semester!
If you want to win an ATC immediately, and a chance to win a much better art prize at the end of the semester, here's what you need to do . . .
For the week of 
October 27th through 29th:
Search for a particular painting.* It's quite well known, and was painted by a very famous Italian artist during the Renaissance period. This painting is housed at the Louvre Museum in Paris, and goes by the name La Gioconda (or La Joconde, in French). Most people know this painting by its "nickname." If you can, print out a copy of this painting, and write down the more familiar name (nickname) that it goes by. This will earn you one ATC. If you want to earn a SECOND ATC, then draw your own version of this painting (do your best work, and don't leave out any details!) and bring it to class along with a copy of the painting. That's right: You can win TWO ATCs this week! 
Whoever has the most assignment-related ATCs by the end of the semester will win a REALLY COOL PRIZE. A 2nd place prize will also be awarded. There will be a first and second prize for each school day, so get busy! Go find that painting! 
*Remember: Anytime you're doing an online search, your parent or other responsible adult must be present. No exceptions!
Have a good weekend! See you in class . . . and don't forget to bring in your "web challenge" assignments! :)

Diptych, 2009, Marker on Paper, by Tavia

Saturday, October 17, 2009

The Evergreen Three

In Art History we often read about groups of artists who, through their collective work or ideals, gained great recognition. There were the Impressionists who first exhibited in the Salon de Refuses; The Fauves; the artists and photographers of 291 Gallery; the Hudson River School; the list goes on and on. Perhaps one day the work of "The Evergreen Three" will be added to this list. 

For the past several weeks, three students in Evergreen (Mason, River, and Morgan) have been working tirelessly on The Book of Kells Project. The assignment was to use the ancient illuminated manuscript as inspiration for a work of art, and to place their first, last, or first and last initials into the work. Because they took so much time, and put so much effort into this FIRST assignment (they've certainly raised the bar for themselves!), I'm giving them their own exhibit space this week. 
Drum roll, please! 

Ladies and Gentlemen, in no particular order, 
The Evergreen Three . . .   

First, we have Fancy Waves by Morgan F.

Morgan F. Fancy Waves, 2009, Pencil, Colored Pencil, and Sharpie Marker on Paper

Artist's Statement

My painting is more modern that my usual work, and I have a very big knot that stands out for me. I also put all these little circles around to fill in the space and make it more  fancy. I like the colors blue and black together, so that’s the main colors in my painting. You can figure out the rest, because I don’t want to give all my secrets away!

Morgan F. Fancy Waves, detail (Above and below)

Next is River G.'s The Arrow and the R

River G., The Arrow and the R, 2009, Pencil, Colored Pencil, and Sharpie Marker on Paper

Artist's Statement

There’s nothing hidden in the picture, though there is a feather hanging from the spear. The knot at the bottom is supposed to be holding it all together. On the right side there’s orange and blue detail that’s supposed to stand out. When you look at it, your eyes kind of focus on the middle, and then wander around on that detail. The one Celtic knot is supposed to stand out, because it’s in the middle of nowhere. There’s a circle in the middle of the detail, and when you look at the picture you notice all the color!

River G.The Arrow and the R, detail (Above and below)

And, finally, rest your eyes upon Mason F.'s The Detail Maze

Mason F., The Detail Maze, 2009, Pencil on Paper

Artist's Statement

The Detail Maze was inspired by the Book of Kells. I  hardly used any straight lines, because I kind of wanted it to have a wiggly sort of style. I hid lots of little pictures in it, including a bird, a fish, and a hidden word. I personally like the design between the M and the F (in the middle), because it stands out and it looks cool. I liked the entire project, in general, because when you look at it, your eyes move around trying to take in all the detail. Like a maze!

Mason F., The Detail Maze, detail (Above and below)

Well done, guys! We're all looking forward to seeing more of your work!

Before we move on to the coming week's web challenge, I'd like to acknowledge Tavia and Keith, who both identified The Spiral Jetty, and amazing piece of Earth Art by Robert Smithson. They also brought examples of work by Andy Goldsworthy, another talented Earth artist! Good work! Tavia and Keith each received an ATC to add to their growing collection. 

If you'd like to win an ATC in the week of October 20th through 22nd, here's what you need to do: Do a web search* to find out what the art terms "diptych" and "triptych" mean, and print out an example of each. If you'd like to win an ADDITIONAL ATC (a total of two in one week!), create your own diptych or triptych! Be sure to do your best work! 
Remember: Who ever has the MOST assignment-related ATCs by the end of the semester will win a prize. A 2nd place prize will also be awarded! So far, the Tuesday and Wednesday students have been collecting quite a few ATCs (that means two 1st place prizes, and two 2nd place prizes!). Thursday students, are you going to have a 1st and 2nd place winner, too? :)
*Remember: Anytime you're doing an online search, your parent or other responsible adult must be present. No exceptions!
Have a good weekend! See you in class . . . and don't forget to bring in your "web challenge" assignments! :)

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Rock (Clay!), Paper, Scissors . . . And the VALUE of WEDGING

This week's images come from the Art from Paper and Mixed Media classes . . .

Students in Art from Paper (Tuesday) created the wonderful cutout works you see here. First they drew images on a piece of paper, making sure that each element of the work was somehow connected to the outer "frame" of paper. Then they cut out the negative space to reveal the image. Once this was done, the image was attached to another piece of paper to help reveal the image!

The Wednesday class began work on Self-Portraits, created entirely from paper. As soon as they're finished, they'll be revealed here, so be sure to check back!

Explorations in Art (1st -3rd) students learned about the term, Value (one of the Elements of Art), and began work on Value drawings! More on this VALUABLE 
lesson later, when the works are finished, and photos are ready for posting!

The 4th through 6th grade Explorations in Art students continue their work on the Book of Kells. I've been promising photos for a while, but they're not ready just yet. When the works are done, they'll be titled, and each artist will create an 
to accompany the piece. A great deal of thought has already gone into this assignment, so be sure to check back next week!

Mixed Media students finished their previous work on woven paintings, featured here. This was no easy task! First the paintings had to be created (two for each student), then the warp and weft lines were drawn on the back of each, and numbered to keep them in proper order for weaving. 

It was well worth the time and effort, though, because each student had a beautiful abstract (or optical illusion!) piece to take home.

Ceramics I students learned the crucial lesson of 
Each young ceramic artist began with a block of clay that was too hard to work. By the end of class, each one had a "ball of buttah" (not butter, because buttah is better than butter!), which they'll use next week!

A variety of projects are under way in Ceramics II, where the current project is "Student Choice." 

Drawing and Painting students continued their work with watercolors, and a couple of students brought back some color wheel mosaics worksheets that I gave them to do for fun. Good work, Ella and Chloe!

Thank you to KeithDiego and Roman, who both brought in examples of Horror Vacui! Each received an ATC to add to their growing collection. Good work, Guys! Now, are you all ready for this week's web challenge? Yes? Well, then,for the week of October 13 through 15th, bring in the following . . .

. . . find out* what the 
Spiral Jetty 
is and who created it. Then, find some information on 
Andy Goldsworthy
and figure out how his art works relate to the Spiral Jetty. This is a two-part question, but both parts are closely related. You should be able to sum it up in one sentence. Print out a picture of the Spiral Jetty, and one work of Goldsworthy's. 
You'll enjoy this one!
Bring in the above, and you'll receive your own ATC (Artist Trading Card). Who ever has the most assignment-related ATCs at the end of the semester will receive a 1st prize gift (art!). A 2nd prize will also be awarded, so get busy! And have fun!

*Remember: Anytime you're doing an online search, your parent or other responsible adult must be present. No exceptions!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Farewell Good Friends, We'll Miss You!

This past week we said goodbye to Bodee, Bryce, and Brock, who will soon start a new life in Florida. While I never had the opportunity to work with Brock, I'm certain that he shares the talent of his two older brothers, Bryce and Bodee. We'll miss you guys! Bodee and  Bryce, keep up with your artwork. You're both very talented artists!

In Mixed Media class this past week, we worked on woven paintings. Below is a fine example, created by Nathan. Good work, Nathan! Your grids within the grids are particularly impressive!

In Art From Paper class we created, well, art from paper! Cynthia made this very whimsical Lady Bug artwork from two different colored papers. She pointed out that, from this view (below) it looks like a bug soaking up the Sunshine. Turn it completely around, though, and it's doing a nose dive into grass! Now THAT'S thinking outside the box!

Students who take Explorations in Art (1st through 3rd) returned to the color wheel this past week and explored the use of color through mosaics

As you can see, this project was interpreted in a number of different ways. Kaylyn, above, used large blocks of color to fill in the pieces of the pie, while another classmate pulled colors from a bigger mix and added them to the page . . .

And at least one young artist, Ike, took such great care to completely fill the field, that he wasn't able to complete it during class. That's okay, though! Great art often takes time! It'll be fun to see this when it's finished! Great work, Ike!

In Drawing and Painting class, we had fun with some free-form work: paint what you like! Below is an "action" shot of painters at work . . .

And such beautiful work, too!

Sisters, Ella and Chloe, created the works you see here. Ella used a mostly "cool" palette to create the work above. Can you find the tree in the painting? Chloe's painting is filled with lots of little details. How many different things do you see? Clearly, both girls are dedicated to their art! 
Great work!

Last week I promised you a sneak peek at the whistles being made in Ceramics II. Well, here they are! This was one tricky project. Don't believe me? Well, then, ask someone who takes the class! This two week project began with making the sphere, then adding the mouthpiece. Once that was attached, the necessary whistle hole needed to be cut and then "tweaked" numerous times until the whistle would actually whistle. But it worked! Each whistle has it's own distinctive sound, and is decorated with it's own unique surface design. We can't wait until these get fired!

We had a lot of fun in Ceramics I this past week, too! Ceramic artists carefully built "paper ball shooters." Starting with the "head" and then working on the "body," ceramic artists wrapped felt-tipped markers with clay, and then added features like legs, tails, etc. Once we were finished, the markers were carefully removed to reveal the inner chamber. Below are just a few of the many creative designs from class. 

Have you ever seen ceramic art that looked happier?  : )

Work continues with the Book of Kells project in Explorations in Art (4th - 6th). At least one of the classes is near completion of this project, so I expect to have photos soon! Maybe even next week, so stay tuned! These amazing works are not to be missed! 

Le Guitariste, 1910, by Pablo Picasso (above), an example of Analytical Cubism
Still Life with Fruit Dish and Mandolin, 1919, oil on canvas, by Juan Gris (below), an example of Synthetic Cubism

Last week I challenged you to find the two types of Cubism, and several students came through! Congratulations to Rebecca, Zoe, Roman, Keith, and Diego! You all correctly identified Analytical Cubism and Synthetic Cubism as the two distinct types! AND you all earned an ATC! 
Are you ready to win another ATC? If so, then here's the challenge for the week of October 6th through 8th:

Do a search* to find out what the art term 
horror vacui 
means, and bring in at least two very different examples (different artists or cultures) that demonstrate horror vacui. Hint: if you're in Explorations (4th-6th) you already know what this is, without having put a name on it yet! 
Have Fun!
Bring your examples to class to receive your winning ATC! Remember: The student with the MOST web challenge ATCs at the end of the semester wins a
*Remember: Anytime you're doing an online search, your parent or other responsible adult must be present. 

No exceptions!