Monday, May 20, 2019

A Change Is Gonna Come...

Hi all, thank you for clicking over to read this.
I know I said the "A Story Of..." project would be due at the beginning of class tomorrow, 5/21, but I need to amend that.
I will give you until the end of class however you will not have the entire class period.
At the very beginning of class I want you to gather around my desk with your ipad and a pencil so that I can go over some administrative things I need to do. I think I can get through all of this in about 15-20 min assuming you are cooperating.
I'll explain more in class, I just need you to bear with me, please.

Monday, April 22, 2019

Opening Some Options and Wrapping Up

I know we just started our final grading period, but there are a couple of things I feel it is important to bring to your attention.
First, as it says in Canvas, nothing that has a due date in May will be accepted past the class period it is due. It simply takes too long for me to address those loose ends and wrap up the semester in a substantial way for that to work.

Second, if you have any Sketchbook work from Ch. 4 or 5 (for Art 1), or any Independent Practices (for Art 2) that were due earlier this semester, regardless of how long ago they were due, I will accept them between May 1st and May 13th. This gives you more than three weeks to work on the work. But, make sure you are following the following directions:

Art 1:
Send me an email that says "Ch. 4 redo" or "Ch. 5 redo" in the subject line.
In the body of the email tell me if you are doing work that was never turned in, or is a do-over of something you turned in earlier ( you must be making significant and noticeable changes if it is a do-over).
If the work is a do-over, include a before and after photo so that I have comparisons I can make, and then physically see me when you are ready to turn it is so I can give additional directions then.
Please send a separate email for Ch. 4 and Ch. 5 if that applies to you.

Art 2:
Send me an email that includes the title/topic of the piece you are turning in, and what number it was, in the subject line.
In the body of the email please tell me if you are doing work that was never turned in, or is a do-over of something you turned in earlier (you must be making significant and noticeable changes if it is a do-over).
If the work is a do-over, include a before and after photo so that I have comparisons I can make, and then make sure to include the topic on the back of the piece (with your name) when you turn it in.
Please send a separate email for each I.P.

For both Art levels: there will be no feedback and "redo" opportunities for work that falls into this category. Also, do not spend class time "catching up" and working on this. You may absolutely use tutorial, lunch, before/after school to do this work, but not class time.

If you have questions about the above, please send me an email. Unfortunately I know not everyone reads these messages, and since I want to focus on current work while in class I will not be discussing this content with the classes as a whole.
I will say, though, that I have been really impressed with some of the work as of late, and I want to allow the ability that I see in you to be shown. I know for some of you this isn't applicable, but for others of you it is. If this helps you, great. If it isn't applicable, thank you for making my life easier on me. I truly, truly, appreciate it.

One other thing I do want to address is the overall use of time. Several of you spend more time on extraneous "things" than are necessary in class. So my request, please be very mindful of how you use class time for the next four to five weeks. This is often with the ipads, so think about things like:
How long is it taking you to log in and select your playlist?
How long are you taking to clean up at the end of class?
But it can also be:
How long are you giving yourself to clean up at the end of class (you probably need less time than you think)?
How many times are you turning to your friends in class instead of having your focus be on your work (Yes, I still want you to feel free to converse with those in your table group, but you still need to get the work done)?

It is easy for any/all of the above to eat up 5-10 minutes of class time, and that is valuable time lost, so be very mindful of your expenditures especially as we work our way into May and June.

Friday, February 1, 2019

Ending and Beginning

Welcome to February, all!
I don't know about you, but after coming down with strep throat, I'm happy to put the last week of January to rest and start a fresh month anew.

As really difficult as this past week has been for me personally, there are some upsides I'm going to try to quickly address some of them here:

  • First, the empathy of the vast majority of my students has been on explicit display. They know I've been massively under the weather, and they have been not just respectful and productive, but kind and full of statements such as, "I hope you feel better soon" (always followed with a smile). To the students, thank you; to the parents, you have some good eggs on your hands. They are reminding me how much I really enjoy being around them and teaching them.
  • Second, since I have been out, it has forced me to remain on the perimeter more than I normally would be and just kind of watch what is happening. In Art 1 we are working on a series of small watercolor landscapes. This is one of the most challenging things we will do this year. As I watch the students work, I am impressed. There are some lovely decisions being made, and from across the room I can see them thinking and processing and putting together a lot of pieces that we have been working on all year. This is so exciting! As a parent and a teacher it is hard to let go at times because you know what "could be" done (or just how we as experienced adults would do it), but we all have to remember that all these adolescents are still just kids, and they need the time and space to figure out their own decisions. I'm seeing some smart decisions, and I can't wait to see the end results!
  • Don't forget that Thursday, 2/7, is the opening reception for the oil painting exhibition in the Town Council Chambers from 6-7:30.
  • Registration: I know the window officially closes on 2/5, but students can always change directly with their counselor later as needed. Honestly, almost every one of the students I am working with this year should be signing up for Art 2 and Art 3 respectively. If you have any questions please let me know.
    A few things to remember based off some questions I've fielded this week: Art 3 gets students the Applied Art credit they need for graduation - always a bonus; there are massive benefits not just for h.s., but also for college admissions, for students to take multiple years of Art (yes, I can give more specifics if you want, but I don't just say this as an Art teacher, but because this is backed up by experts in several different fields); there is no need to take more than one science class per year to be highly qualified for college - this goes counter to what many people want to think (especially if you want your student to pursue something science related), but the truth is, no colleges expect more than four sciences, but all colleges want students that are creative thinkers, and these Art classes are some of the most challenging in terms of "figuring stuff out" and forcing complex thinking processes out of the students; it is amazing how much you have to figure out in order to create a drawing and painting from scratch.
  • Then, tutorial, as we near the end of a grading period, I know there are some - especially in Art 1 - that would benefit from "extra time". While there are many many students who positively use this time, it shouldn't come as a surprise that many student who could most benefit from this time aren't using it. Please encourage accordingly.
  • Last, feedback. Everyone knows I give a lot of this, and I document as much as possible in Canvas. Students are expected to use the feedback given to make changes and adjustments when necessary. With nearly every assignment there is a window for students to make changes to what they've done. Again, please encourage accordingly.
Well, that wasn't quite as short as it could have been, but I tried. I wish you all a restful weekend. That is my one big goal, personally!


Monday, January 28, 2019

Daily Agenda for Art 2 on 1/28/19

I'm sorry to miss the day, everyone :(
I've been sick since Thursday night and I just don't have enough voice to make it through the day.
I will be back tomorrow, and while you know where you left off, I want to get it here in writing for you and the sub.

You may have the first 15min to work on your I.P. that is due next week.
While you already brainstormed some ideas, what I want you to think about is something that is not straightforward. If you draw a cup, and that's it, it's probably going to be really boring.
What else can you add to it? Is there a more interesting object you can draw? How can you play with scale? Can the image be about something else (more interesting), and the item with a handle be just a small part of it?
There are a lot of options, it's up to you to discover them and have fun with it.

Next, finish your color chart.
Remember that the values should be noticeably different in each circle/oval in each column.
Each color mixture should be noticeably different from left to right.
Pay particular attention to your neutrals (for ex, blue and org or purple and yellow) as they need to be mixed properly.
Mix the colors completely on your palette.
Application on color chart is expected to be smooth, homogeneous, opaque, and neat.

When you are finished, make sure your name is on it, you have labeled all of you colors in their respective places, and you put it on my desk in a neat pile once it is dry (use the hair dryer if needed).

If there is time remaining, please begin drawing your image on your canvas.

I will get everything caught up throughout the rest of the week as I can. Wish me luck in healing. Have a great day!

As you see the CT kids coming through/around campus today (beginning around 9:30) please encourage them to sign up for Art 1 :)

Daily Agenda for Art 1 on 1/28/19

I am so sorry to miss class today, folks, but I've been sick since Thursday night.

Your main goal for the day is to, essentially, finish your watercolor that you drew out last week.
However, I want to remind you of some tips and best practices and frequent pitfalls. Please look at the bullet points below for all of those.
When you are finished for the day please do an extra strong cleanup job so I am not looking at a mess tomorrow when I know I will still be under the weather but on campus, and gingerly place your watercolor in your plastic tub.
Also, even though I am having you read this on the ipads, I don't want you listening to music today. The sub can put something on through the computer behind my desk, but I don't want you to have headphones in. I want you to converse and strategize with the peers that are doing the same landscape as you so that you can all have the best product possible.

  • the biggest and lightest areas need to be done first
  • this happens, usually, with a large brush and the wet-on-wet technique
  • think in terms of layers
  • this means that even though you may have grass covering some dirt, you prob need to paint the dirt first, let that dry, then come back over and paint the grass (this is how the lighthouse example by the board was done)
  • never use black by itself, and use it sparingly 
  • even that lighthouse with the stripes on it isn't black; yes, it has black in it, but you need something else in there; black by itself is way too stark (this is a lesson for pretty much every painting medium)
  • color mixing is important
  • think about the color chart we did, how can you use that? brown is rarely the brown from the paint palette; you may need three or four colors together
  • test everything out on scrap paper ahead of time; colors, values, etc.
  • have plenty of paper towels on hand
  • use the hair dryers
  • watercolor is a lot of hurry up and wait; if you try to paint a building right after you do the sky it will probably bleed together; you can't fix this
  • I will often do sky, first ground layer, and then make sure everything is dry before I start to do the rest of my objects and details
  • did I mention that the idea of layers is important? it adds depth, character, and dimension; you need to try to think several steps ahead in order to have the strongest painting possible

If you are finished "early", work on your sketchbook. I am getting better, but I'm not well. Have a great day and I will see you soon!