Sunday, August 24, 2014

We Celebrate Color in a New School Year

Kindergarteners painted these Fauve-inspired faces and line/color balloons last spring (posted here), but I saved a HUGE batch to assemble in our auditorium to help usher in our new school year with a bang!

The celebration of color continues on the opposite wall with collages modeled after Picasso's Rooster and a collage mural further down patterned after Eric Carle and made with painted papers. I have posted both of these lessons previously under "Collage."

I don't actually start with students for another couple of weeks, so I've been busy getting my Art Cart ready and auditioning some new potential lessons -- more on that later, of course. So, a little hemming . . .
 and a little Velcro . . . and my little space is ready to wheel the corridors:-) I made the fabric panels to cover the contents that I am leaving on the shelves and to distinguish this cart from the others around the school, in the hope that it remains where I left it when I am off campus:))

 For all of you who have already started teaching, I hope you had a wonderful beginning!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Looks Like Weaving, But . . .

You know how you sometimes just collect a bunch of something that you KNOW can be recycled into art?? Well, here are a few of MANY boxes that I have accrued:
At first I was going to use them to create weavings, so I cut them into skinny strips:
That reminded me how hard it was to cut cardboard when I was a little kid. My hand would hurt and I would always run to my mother to help out (fortunately she did!). So, if I do this with kids I think I'll pre-cut the strips on the paper cutter.

Then, instead of weaving, I decided to glue horizontal strips onto a 6" X 6" piece of illustration board . . .

. . . and then glue vertical strips on top of them.

This would be MUCH easier than weaving for younger kids, but the effect is quite similar. I went a step further and cut the ends varying lengths -- I think it looks better.

Of course, I never really got to weave, which was my original objective, so I decided to add on to these using weaving. But I am not quite finished, so I'll save that story for another day. Have a good week.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Dot Day is Getting Near

September 15, International Dot Day, is fast approaching. This project is inspired by Peter H. Reynolds book, The Dot and you can check Google for the website and more information.  This year I think it would be fun to have the kids make dots with a collage of painted paper.

Of course, to start you need some painted paper. I like to have classes make a batch of this using tempera at the beginning of the year and then I always have some on hand.

Students start by painting the paper a solid color and then print designs on top using a collection of objects I have around (paper towel tubes, forks, spoons, old kitchen utensils, plastic lids, paint brushes) and contrasting colors.

To make the circles for this project we start by cutting a dot for the center. Then students cut curved line segments to glue around the dot, creating a circle. They can keep gluing segments until the circle reaches the size they would like. A cool math connection might be to have kids find the diameter of their circle when they are finished:))


My finished sample above was done on a 6" X 6" square of illustration board, but it could easily be done on black cardstock or construction paper. If the circles were done on these lighter papers, it would be fun to cut them all out and mount them floating around on a bulletin board for a great Dot Day display!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Last Craft of Summer

With the beginning of school fast approaching I figured there was just enough time left to fit in one more little summer project. Motivated by a Pinterest post on crochet trimmed pillowcases, I decided to buy a kitchen tea towel and add a crochet border.

 Well, as you might imagine, one thing led to another and the one towel became 20 and instead of just crocheting the borders, I got into appliqueing some fun designs onto the towels. What a great way to start to whittle down my stash of quilting fabrics (drawers and shelved full of it!!).

A couple of years ago I saw a great 3-D applique and embroidered lobster tea towel at Anthropologie. It cost more than I wanted to spend so by the time I got back to try to buy it on sale, they were all gone. Well, I have been thinking about that towel for 2 years, so maybe appliqueing one of my own will satisfy the craving!! ( Although, I still like their's better!)

Ooops, I just noticed I missed a leg on the left side!!

After making 3 of these little guys I moved on to easier designs that were less labor intensive. I'm sort of on a roll, because I know that soon enough I will tire of having the stacks of fabrics cluttering up my living space. But for now, I am loving just stitching away as I listen to music or catch up on some "On Demand" TV shows I haven't seen. I find it's a good time for me to start mulling over school art stuff in my head, because I know that first day is "just around the corner!!"