do it. create. walk and see. cut and paste. scratch and sniff.
do whatever you have to do to feed your soul.
this is my commitment.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

presidential portraits

We worked in two different groups this past Monday during our Presidents' Day Weekday Workshop.  Both groups were given scrambled grids with at least sixteen compartments.  

One group practiced grid method drawing using graphite pencils.  The grid method is an approach artists use when referencing another image (usually a photograph) while having a desire to maintain exact proportions.  This approach trains the brain to draw what is actually seen as opposed to what one thinks they see.  Blind contour drawing is another approach used in developing this skill.

More importantly, I believe, this practice teaches the process of breaking a large task into small, manageable steps.  It allows the student to experience success as each compartment is drawn rather than continuously becoming overwhelmed by the entire picture.  Having the initial image scrambled allows for this to be even more of a possibility.

The second group worked on cutting out their 16 - 25 square compartments, arranging each piece at the proper intersection on a grid (A4, D2, etc) and then transferring them to a plain piece of card stock.  This activity involved three thorough steps and much problem solving.

This was an amazing lesson for both groups.  It was so inspiring to witness students within the groups assisting each other.

After the snack break, we continued to stay in our two groups.  Each group was given a jar of pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters.  The children sorted the coins.  We discussed the presidents on each coin and their value.  The children worked together in each group, tallying up the number of coins in each category while calculating the value.

After these two activities, we took an early lunch break and read the book, Looking at Lincoln by Maira Kalman.

After lunch, some of the students used one of Kalman's illustrations to create a print of a Lincoln silhouette.  Other students used a roller, watercolor paint and stencils to create an "I Voted" sign.

One of the students has been an expert on presidential trivia for a long time.  It was so much fun to hear him "quiz" the other students with questions like "If a president is in office for two terms, how many years is that?"

I have two more seats available in this coming Sunday afternoon class.  We will be studying the artist, Corita Kent, exploring print making methods, drawing while using a view finder and creating an inspirational poster.  Sunday, February 21, 1:30-4:30, $55

For MARCH Weekday Workshops and a schedule of weekend classes, please visit this link.

For 2016 Summer Camps, please visit this link.

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