Friday, December 30, 2011

Reductive printmaking: self-portraits

Fifth graders worked on proportion when drawing their self-portraits - we spent some time figuring out sizes and placements of the parts of the face and printed a simple contour drawing from a styrofoam sheet.  Next, we removed part of the printing plate by cutting and added textures and patterns in the remaining areas and printed with a second color of ink.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Trouble with comments

Lately, several people have mentioned that they cannot leave a comment because "they are not authorized" or some message along those lines.  I remember reading a couple of other posts from art teachers regarding this same issue, and Internet Explorer was supposedly not jiving with Blogger, creating this lack of commentary.  I do not have a problem when I use Safari from my home computer, so I suggest trying another internet browser if possible.  If anyone else has good suggestions, tips, or other ways to make commenting easier, please comment - of course, if you can, that is!!! 
Just for fun, here's a pic of my desk which is currently collecting some holiday loot - Happy Holidays, all!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

mapping our ATC's

As we are receiving packets of ATC's from around the world, we are mapping them as we go.  This is getting exciting!  Here is a sneak peek, and I will post in detail once we have received from everyone. 

Mapping our trades

A few exciting examples from our ATC collection bucket

Monday, December 19, 2011

Sunflower pinch pots

First graders have begun a unit on painter Vincent Van Gogh and his masterpieces.  Our first project is a sunflower formed from a pinch pot.  Van Gogh loved sunflowers and painted them again and again - sometimes out in the fields and sometimes at home in a vase.  Our little bowls capture the colors and textures of the sunflowers.
ready for first firing

stages of drying
opening the kiln

Friday, December 16, 2011

2nd grade Japanese Tea Bowls

This is a tea bowl made from clay.  It is used in Japan for the daily tea ceremony. 

We made the bowl from two slabs (body and base) and a coil (for the foot).

Sealing the seam

Cutting away the extra clay from the base

These pots are almost ready for their first firing.

These pots have been fired once, glazed, and are waiting for their second firing in the kiln.

We decorated the surface with Japanese symbols and characters.

Elders are always served their tea first as a sign of respect.

We prepared them to go home with a little information sheet.

Tea ceremonies are enjoyed in a clean, quiet, peaceful setting.

Many countries and cultures drink tea and make ceramic art. 
It's fun to see the differences and similarities!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Imaginary Creatures Collage

The kindergarteners enjoyed using all the scraps leftover from the 3rd grade collagraphs to create their own imaginary creature collages.  It's funny how the scraps left from cutting out evergreen trees made great monster teeth! We read the book Jeepers Creepers: A Monstrous ABC and talked about using our imagination in our artwork.  We started with a symmetrical shape cut from some striped cardstock, which was a nice donation from a parent.  Then we had a ball adding parts to our creatures with scrap paper, cloth, foam, feathers, stickers, and pom-poms.  This is always a great lesson, year after year.