Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Pixel Self Portraits







 

Minecraft is all the rage right now among students. It is a computer game where the characters look like they are created through pixels- meaning they are square shape with very generic details.
4th and 5th graders discussed pixel art at the beginning of the project. When I asked them what they thought pixel art was I got a lot of blank stares UNTIL I brought up Minecraft- then the room exploded with discussion!
We first practiced making pixel art on the mini laptops at a pixel art creator website (http://piq.codeus.net/draw ) where they got practice creating a self -portrait using pixels digitally. Once they had some practice they were given graph paper and used color pencils to create a pixel self- portrait drawing. After their drawing was complete they then created an enlarged self-portrait using paper squares. They were really working on their gluing skills for this portion of the project. Their learning targets for this project were:

 

·        I can create pixel art on the computer, with colored pencil, and with construction paper.

·        I can make sure all the pieces of paper stay glued down.

·        I can use glue neatly so that it doesn’t leak out around the edges.

Clay Snails







Grant Wood Chicken Scupltures







The 3rd grade students learned about the artist Grant Wood.  He was born in a small town in Iowa and was born and raised on a farm.  Grant Wood loved living on the farm and had many pets such as chickens, goats, ducks and turkeys.  Grant was an excellent artist from an early age on and he did many things revolving around art.  He taught art, made jewelry, learned carpentry, and also decorated people’s houses.  When he joined the army during WWI his job was to paint camouflage on the tanks and canons.  Most of Grant Wood’s paintings were of farmlands because that was a huge part of his childhood.  People loved his work because they could relate to his paintings, and they were very peaceful and calming.  The 3rd grade students learned the difference between a 2-D and 3-D piece of art.  We discussed the various materials a sculpture could be made out of and each student was able to create their very own chicken sculpture. 
 
Thank you to my friend Leah from Green Bay Art Room for this great lesson!

Relief Sculptures







 

5th GRADERS LEARNED THAT RELIEF SCULPTURE IS A FORM THAT EXTENDS FROM A BACK GROUND OR FLAT SURFACE. IT CAN ONLY BE VIEWED FROM ONE DIRECTION. THEY ALSO LEARNED THAT NON-OBJECTIVE ART IS A FORM THAT ISN’T REPRESENTATIONAL OF ANYTHING AND PRIMARILY USES GEOMETRIC OR FREE FORM SHAPES.

 5TH GRADERS CREATED A RELIEF SCULPTURE BY GLUING DIFFERENT OBJECTS TO CARDBOARD. THEY THEN COVERED IT IN CRINKLED TINFOIL AND ADDED A BLACK INK WASH TO HELP SHOW THE RELIEF. 

 

Amate Bark Paintings






Amate is a type of paper made by hand. It is brown in hue and usually has more than one value of brown which shows an interesting textured look.  It is made from native trees of Mexico called Jonote or Amate.  Amate usually has two main themes. The first is nature. The State of Guerrero is surrounded by beautiful natural lands and much of what these artists see in their environment is painted onto the paper. The second theme is the villages that the artisans live in. Pictures of everyday life in the village are very plentiful in these paintings. Either theme is always painted in very bright colors. The contrast between the brown paper and the bright colors is incredibly beautiful.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Art Careers! Taxidermy











One of the standards from the 5th grade art curriculum is learning about art careers. I had an artist in resident earlier this year, but never in my career did I think that I would have a taxidermist in my classroom, let alone have a mounted deer temporarily housed in my art room.

At my school we have been lucky enough to have a wonderful long term sub custodian, Jesse Lewis, while our regular custodian has been out most of the year for a shoulder surgery/recovery. Jesse is a custodian by day, and artist/taxidermist by night (and weekends, seriously I don't when he sleeps).
He owns his taxidermy shop called High, Wet and Wild LLC in downtown Green Bay, WI.

After getting to know Jesse and talking about his business I learned a whole lot about taxidermy that I didn't know before. I had no idea all the sculpting and painting that goes into it. After Jesse saw that I had an artist come in for my classes in February, he expressed interest about some day being able to teach what he knows in a classroom. So I thought, hey, why not give it a try now! 5th graders need to learn about different art careers. That's how this all began!

So last Wednesday I get to school and walk into my classroom and find it transformed. There were mounted animals, fish forms, bear skulls, teeth, and hides all over my room. Jesse outdid himself in presentation alone! When he was teaching the 5th grade classes he did a great job on talking about the ethics of hunting, because not everyone is into hunting. He also talked about his struggle with academics when he was in school. He was in special education up until high school- and art class was what got him through school. He loved art- painting, drawing, it's what made him want to go to school.

He talked to the students about all the different parts of his business- the art side and the business side. He did an airbrush painting demonstration of a fish and even let the kids do some of the detail work. What I really loved about his talk was how he covered the business end of being an artist. He incorporated math into his talk, telling the students how he uses math to calculate his costs of running his shop and negotiating his prices. And also how you need to have communication/ people skills when dealing with customers.

It was a great experience, and am so thankful that Jesse took time out of his busy day to talk with my 5th graders.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Artist In Resident Kirsten Christianson







My school was lucky enough to have paper making artist Kirsten Christianson working with all the art classes for one week in February.
Kirsten is based out of Sturgeon Bay, WI and creates artwork using handmade paper. The theme for our art project was "snow falling on branches". The kids loved it and was amazing to hear the discussions with Kirsten about her career as an artist!

Robert Indiana

 



2nd graders learned about the artist Robert Indiana through a Power Point Presentation.
Robert Indiana’s artwork is inspired by poetry, road signs, letters, and numbers.
Students learned how to draw block letters. Students reviewed how to make a pattern. Students also learned how to create contrast in their black and white patterns. Students used only black marker to make patterns inside the block letters, and colored markers to decorate with colors and patterns around the letters.

Keith Haring Foil Figures



Students learned about Pop/ Graffiti artist Keith Haring. Here is a great video to show your students all of his different art work.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rw_WTFyag4I

Learning targets for this project were: I can create a 3d figure from foil. I can create a neat pattern (on scratch paper).

Hundertwasser




Hundertwasser (1928 – 2000) is considered to be one of the most important artists to have emerged from Europe since the end of World War II. As a painter and an architect, Hundertwasser rejected the “straight line” in any of his projects.  The “spiral” dominates the flow of his paintings. 
Students created a brightly colored patterned background using oil pastel. Next they created Hundertwasser’s beloved SPIRAL using glue and yarn. They did a great job. The learning targets for this project were:
I can create/color a pattern neatly.
I can glue with control.
They turned out great!