Friday, June 8, 2018

Welcome to the Summer.

Summer 2018...
First, a quick note to the seniors who will be graduating tonight:

Congratulations. This evening you will acquire a piece of paper after years of work which will tell you of your accomplishment. Yes! I am thankful to know each and every one of you, and hope you keep in touch as your journey continues.
Be safe and strive for joy. You are capable and kind, so please share your best self with the world.

Next, to everyone else:

I have thoroughly enjoyed my year(s) with you. While every year has its ups and downs I can say that there are more positives I am leaving with than negatives. I have wonderful memories from each class period, and have learned a lot myself along the way. As usual, I am thankful not just for this, but for your efforts.
It is true that what we do in the studio more closely mirrors real life than most of your other classes (in terms of workflow, longevity, depth over time, etc.), and it is always a process.
I have enjoyed looking through your finals as well. There are some really good examples of complex thought that you were able to get down on paper, and for some of you this final effort of product made a positive difference.
Some of you didn't take it as seriously as you could, and you certainly missed an opportunity - especially when I compare different results side by side.

As a global statement, I truly wish for us all to have a restful and refreshing summer. I believe it to be well earned.
You are fabulous. You are cared for. You are admired. Go, and enjoy.
I'll see you soon.


Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Concentration PIns

I forgot I forgot.

You all received your emoji pin from me and you are totally allowed to wear that on your gown at graduation! If you want to wear your silver cord under your gown, I won't tell you not to (wink wink).
Additionally, you will be receiving an "official" pin for completing your concentration at the senior awards ceremony on Thursday - along with the other recipients that are not my students.

Wear both pins proudly and rock your graduation like no other!

I'm very proud of you all.


Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Regarding Europe

To everyone who has taken the time to respond to the inquiries about the potential of a field trip to Europe over spring break of 2019, I am sorry to say that because of the low number of student families able to verbally commit at this time, I have had to make the difficult decision to not move forward with any further planning or approval stages (through the district or with EF).

I am bummed for those of you that have been “all in” from the beginning, and I know how fun the trip would be, but it isn’t something to be undertaken with only the few students who have been able to commit as of this time.

It’s too bad, but let’s see if we can plan something that is more local for next year.


Final, Spring 2018

What you need on your desk is a pencil.
I will provide you with a sheet of printer paper - which you may or may not need, a piece of drawing paper, and a pen - which you may or may not need.
If you need color, colored pencils are stored where they have been all year.

Please plug in your headphones after you finish reading this, and listen to the following before beginning to make your drawing.

On Monday we worked at teams. We worked as teams that often don't work together. There is a lot that can come from activities such as the marshmallow challenge, and while it may not seem related to what we have done in the past (or will do today), it certainly is.
The part that I am interested in is how do we communicate, work with limited means, work with a time constraint, and give visual form to a challenge. I wouldn't forget how there were different ideas communicated by each team, or the process of trying different things out though.

As we are at the end of the semester I find it interesting to go back as a lot of what we have done outside of learning and refining some techniques is how to communicate.
Sometimes the ideas just come to us, and sometimes we have to search for them - or steal ideas for a starting point from others.

If we think about this idea of illustration I think of many successive questions.
  • what is the topic (which may not be straightforward or obvious...though it might be)
  • how do I create a focal point
  • given the time and materials, what is the best method to move forward (what I am best at might not be available or doable in the given time period)
  • how can I create depth through overlapping and use of space
  • can I use abstracted elements to create unity and cohesion 
  • does something have to be photographic in representation to make sense

Having said that, I want you to listen to the FOLLOWING PODCAST.
That is step one.
You may end up taking "notes" or jotting down ideas of what you hear or think of. I can see how that might be useful.
Next, you'll make a piece of art that speaks to the content of the podcast. Anyone seeing what you have created and listening to the same podcast should "get it."

That said, anyone seeing what you have created but not listening to the podcast should be able to appreciate the creation as a stand alone piece of visual art.

Do you start with architecture?
Do you begin with a portrait?
Where is the focal point going to go?
What is the context around the focal point?
Do you draw what you know is there only?
Or do you also add elements from your imagination which also makes sense?
Is it all about nature?
Could you get more than one "main thing" in the image?
What works within the given time?
Do you have enough time to focus only on stipple, or is that a fool's game?
What is the best media to use?
What media is the best idea for creating balance?
How long should you spend sketching out in pencil before adding other media and/or shading begins?
Should you begin sketching out in pencil first?
How critical is technique versus concept?

I would say:
  • don't spend much time surfing around the web
  • just get started
  • think about composition
  • think about balance and unity
  • think about visual space
  • don't rush
  • show how the processes you have learned about and the feedback you've been given can manifest themselves here
Lastly, know that this is an important process to engage fully in.
Have fun!

Oh, one more thing. Once you are finished listening to the above segment, please take your headphones out. No personal music today.