Friday, September 12, 2014

Can you join us?

Planning Field Trips now!  
Are there any parents interested in coming along to help out?  I need 2 chaperones on November 20th for a trip to the Nelson, from 8-3:30!  They have an amazing show for us to see and we'll also do a ceramic workshop while we are there.

Contour Drawing with 2-D Art

Students in 2-D Art learned about the life and work of Grandma Layton as an introduction to our blind contour drawings this week.  I am lucky to know a wonderful man and art collector in Topeka that was willing to loan out two lithographs by Layton.

Blind contour drawings end up looking interesting and always have students giggling at one point or another.  As the students draw their hands, themselves, and eventually all of their classmates they are learning to really look at their subject matter.  They are only allowed to glance at their paper and can't lift their pen or erase!

Next week students will combine this skill with a more involved work of art.  Want to watch a demo of this technique?  Visit this youtube link:

Monday, November 14, 2011

Field Trip!

Every few years Ms. Temple and I team up to do a Dia Day Los Muertos field trip. We go to
They take such good care of us-- with cool art projects

They always have lots of interesting and personal alters for the holiday....
These are created to honor ancestors and to celebrate their lives. Favorite items, foods, and photos are often a part of the alters.
This alter was for three still born babies... a hard one for me, a mother of young kids, to see.

This was the alter that really grabbed our students attention. It was for a 15 year old that passed away in a car accident. She was an excellent boxer and was loved by her community.

Maddie Rhodes also has lots of cool art and sculptures around for us to enjoy.

We also had some great Mexican food and enjoyed some time at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Tiny Art

Well, each Friday students come in to the Art Lab and they have no idea what to expect from the class period. Some students come to the "Hour of Innovation" with fear- others with excitement. Either way, it is a special class period-- every 5th day in art! This is the hour we set aside regular- well planned- art projects. Instead we do quick, creative studies with no planning at all. Students have to think quick and "outside of the box." Well usually they think outside of the box. This weeks Hour of Innovation was TINY ART-- it literally had to fit inside a tiny box. Look at what these guys came up with-- on the fly-- in an hour!

how did she slip in this slid show?? :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Want to go to St. Louis?

Monday we came to school--- but students stayed home. It was a great day of learning from peers. One trick I'm glad to have up my sleeve is Animoto.... Check out my: Art Club Trip Promo

I'm excited to take students to one of my favorite cities this Feb! I'm also glad to work at a place filled with teachers that are smart, excited about what they do, and are willing to share! Here's to Art Club! Here's to Animoto! Here's to fellow RV Staff!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Art Exploration Students started out with a pretty great project...

OK, to start with this project is completely stolen. But then, aren’t most art projects? This one is stolen from:

a. My friend Jessica McLaughlin. She has GREAT ideas, used to be the art teacher here, and doesn’t mind sharing.

b. A guy named Giuseppe Arcimboldo that lived in the 1500’s. He did lots of traditional-conservative paintings, but no one remembers those. What people remember now are his crazy-surreal paintings where he uses fruits and veggies to create portraits.

c. An illustrator from Israel named Hanoch Piven. He does portraits using random objects which he then photographs and uses for all kinds of things. He has some great kids books, my favorite is The Scary Show of Mo and Jo. I may have read this book, aloud, to your kids!

Students created self portraits using really random supplies.....

Here are just a few examples!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Back on Track

Well... I've been back as long as I was gone... it is about time to update this blog!

I was a little distracted with my family for a bit....

Olive Ann Marable was born a few weeks after her due date, on Dec 22, 2010. She was 9 lbs 9 oz and has been wonderful just about every minute. Between holiday breaks and snow days, I think I only missed about 5 weeks of class time with students. In that time kids learned 2-point perspective, made coil pots, and did pen and ink drawings with a guy named Mr. Balda. He also brought in some advanced metalsmithing materials from home and taught a handful of students how to caste metal. That was a very cool opportunity for our art students!

I returned in early February to a very clean classroom! Since then we've been very busy making collages, popcorn drawings, relief prints, layered metal projects, contour drawings, watercolors, and so much more I can't even list it (oh, and a mess!). Here are a handful of examples:

We've also started back with the Hour of Innovation... it's a little different these days- the students are given specific supplies to use instead of the entire room of supplies. For the first few Fridays students had access to x-acto knifes, paper, and glue sticks (one set of classes also had images of Topeka they could use). I was really impressed with the results:

Last year several students made bird houses to be a part of a show in Topeka. The book involves a process of project based healing. Students processed different major life issues while creating a very personal birdhouse. Images of these houses are found on packaging for the newest Birdhouse Project book! Pretty exciting stuff!

Over spring break we also had a little Art Club trip to Minneapolis. Three students came along and we went to:

the Minneapolis Institute of the Arts- a huge museum with floors and floors of amazing art from all time.
We spent an afternoon at the Walker Art Center - a really interesting building filled with contemporary art (some really odd stuff!). There is also a large sculpture garden at the Walker. The girls had a great time there.... as did my little Willow!

When we weren't going to museums we were checking out the Mall of America, eating really good food, and watching be filmed at the amazing Orpheum Theater!

Watching a talent show like that be filmed was quite an experience. We saw an opera singer (good), man that hung by his hair (bad), a horse open a cooler and bring a guy a soda (weird), and all kinds of other "talents." Giant X's and silver scaffolding adorned the amazing stage that is pictured above. The judges had make-up, snacks, and drinks between each act... while the audience was entertained by a guy making fun of various people in the crowd. It was LONG and as some of the crowd bailed we moved down to the front. That was a nice change a few hours into a 4 hour show!

On our way home, we stopped at the Des Moines Art Center-
for a bit more art and to stretch our legs. I think the girls liked the gift shop best at this one!

So... I guess that sums up what's been going on with Art lately!