CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio

CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio
CBMS Choice-Based Art Studio

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Guerrilla Art

Guerrilla Art: Unauthorized art in public places

If you want to tickle my artistic funny bone – start making and installing guerrilla art around the art room or the school – it kills me!

Here is a recent piece left by an 8th grader  who is becoming very impatient having to wait until the LAST quarter of the school year to FINALLY get to have art. Life is so unfair sometimes!

(The rule we have for guerrilla art is that it must not deface or destroy any property - it must be removable, must not offend or get the art teacher fired)

Stencil Drawing

When the “drawing Center” first opens students are introduced to the many tools, materials, references and resources that are available to them. Students can choose from pencils, colored pencils, charcoal, pastels, oil pastels, chalk, thick and thin markers, crayons and chalk. White glue is sometimes employed as a drawing tool, and scratchboard is available by request.

There are drawers holding rulers and compasses, a large selection of toy models which includes everything from an old hound dog to a stegosaurus. There is an ever-growing collection of books, many images and references posted on the wall, three computers fro digital drawing and a collection of templates.

I say all this in order to highlight this one particular drawing made recently by a 5th grader,  isn’t this a great use of a template? (Computer geeks will recognize this relic from the days of hand-drawn flowcharts.)

Amazing Clay Dragon

By "D" Grade 6

"He's from a video game. I tried my best to make him look like a dragon."
This imposing clay figure is handbuilt  by combining the slab with the coil method.  It is about 10" tall and can stand alone. Instead of glaze, "D" decided to paint the figure with acrylic paint and added some fabric, as a finishing touch, to complete the costume.

Develop Skills - Envision

"N," a 7th grade artist very much wanted to use the sewing machine – but what would she make?
She decided to make a stuffed animal, and went online to search for inspiration. She quickly determined that she would make a penguin, and gathered an assortment of pictures for reference.

Working primarily from a cartoon-style drawing, “N,” began assembling her materials – she needed black and white fabric. Finding plenty of white, but no black, she determined that she could create her own black fabric. Proceeding to the “Painting Center,” “N” painted a large enough piece of cloth for her project, and set it aside to dry. Meanwhile, she worked on other parts of her soft-sculpture.

“N” worked with purpose and conviction – meeting and solving various design issues and creative decisions. I watched from across the room – marveling at the independence shown by this student who just a year before needed so much reassurance and guidance to navigate the studio.

When “N” presented her finished sculpture, it was with pride and delight – she seemed surprised that she was able to bring her idea to such a gratifying conclusion all by herself. I was delighted too, but not surprised to see the growth this student has made, from an uncertain new-comer last year to a confident, capable artist this year.

We often filter our work in the art studio through the lens of the eight “Studio Thinking Habits” (Hetland et all, 2007) –“N’s” creative  process began with a desire to learn to use the sewing machine – so she was employing the habit “Develop Craft” – practicing new skills and techniques. She very quickly employed the studio habit “Envision” - seeing very clearly in her minds-eye what she would make and how she would make it.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Traditional Self-Portraits in Pencil

‘I usually do a self-Portrait every year” remarked “B,” grade 8

"G" (grade 8), often chooses to  working on  cartooning, both in and out of the art studio, but today he went for realism, with a mirror as an aid, to create a close likeness in his self-portrait.

Digital Art and Design – Self-Portraits

Students are discovering various new approaches to self-portraiture. Starting with a digital photo, the image is altered and embellished – focus is on line, color and texture. Students develop personal approaches to this timeless subject.

 Self-Portrait with amped-up personality by "S" grade 6

This artist ("A," Grade 6), worked pixel-by-pixel to fine-tune his portrait

Students often want to take group portraits using PhotoBooth - but where is the artistry? These students (all grade 6) worked collaboratively to create a hand-colored image, like in the "old days" before color photography. They used crayons and colored pencils to add color to a black and white image.