Wednesday, April 29, 2015

off and rubbing!

We're back! After 4 weeks of spring break, it feels real good to get back in the class and working with our kiddos:)

All grade levels will be focusing on texture as their next unit of study, so I was able to tie in our visit to Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin West for the project. Hello, tax write off! ;)

I've been sharing photos of my family's spring break trip with the kids and then getting into the focus of the lesson. I think it's always good to give students a peek into what we do when we don't have our teaching hats on.
The inspiration for the project is the above mosaic done by Clare Boothe Luce (who was a fascinating trailblazer on so many levels in her lifetime). It hangs in FLW's living room space. We look at the different materials that she used to create the artwork- stones, wood, saguaro and chollas cacti ribbing, deer antler and how these were materials that were native to the location of the house. I ask them to describe what this piece would feel like if they were able to touch it. Then we talk about how other things around us feel.

With this project I want students to experience texture and see how it can create patterns in art. Each class starts with 5 sheets of colored paper (I'm having classes use different sets of analogous colors to create variety in visual displays later on. Since I see half classes, each class will have 2 different color schemes to hang in their classrooms and I'll have a nice range to display elsewhere.) They use colorsticks to rub the texture patterns onto their paper- the textures loosely represent our San Diego climate/landscape- flowers, palm tree leaves, ocean waves, tree bark, and desert rocks. 

The energy is quite palpable during class, as the kids "discover" the patterns created by the texture plates. This aspect of texture rubbings never gets old for me to witness and listen too:)

Once they have colored all 5 sheets, I give them a backing paper to arrange their pieces on. At this point, they can cut and rearrange the color shapes to create a unique composition. We have been sticking mostly with geometric shapes in the designs.

I don't give the kids any glue until they have their entire composition laid out. I do this to encourage play- moving pieces around and trying out different arrangements.

This one is so elegant in terms of color shifts and line quality:)

I just love the energy of this one. How the student broke from the frame to give it 
a more sculptural feel.

 Really digging the way the triangles float over the cloud like forms below them.

Friday, April 24, 2015

spring breakin' 2- camping boogaloo

One last spring break post:)

This past week the fam and I headed on over to the Superstition Mountains outside of Phoenix, and set up camp for a few days. Our trusty can ham, Cecil, came along for the ride too.

We hiked the Siphon trail, swam in Saguaro Lake, listened to the coyotes at night, read Lemony Snicket by the fire, and walked in the footsteps of Frank Lloyd Wright. Not a bad trip;)

This is the 3rd year in a row that we have taken family camping trips over spring break- Zion and Malibu were the first two. I'm looking forward to many more.

 homebase with Cecil.

view from our fire pit.

 taking a break on the Siphon trail.

 happy missus in the lake.


the missus going in to free a bird that was tangled in fishing line.

 evening campsite visitor.

big boy lite brite!

Taliesin West.

 FLW light fixtures.

 the girl, just, you know, chillin in a FLW origami chair.

super fantastic mosaic by Clare Boothe Luce.

nite lites.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

slingin paint on spring break- part deux.

Well, after 3 days of painting with 5th graders up at Angier Elementary, their first ever legacy mural is just about done. All I have left are touch ups, rolling a 2nd coat of yellow, and adding a couple details. The kids have been great and the support from staff and parents has been very sweet as the project developed this week.

I'm already looking forward to coming back next year and doing another one:)

The final size of the mural is 9.5' by 24.5'. It's always interesting to go from a drawing that under a foot long to something that's pretty darn big. Stay in school and do your math kids. It comes in handy;)

one of many hard working groups.

the boy helped me out one day, too:)

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

slinging paint on spring break ;)

This week I am working on a mural with 5th graders over at Angier Elementary. We are creating the first ever legacy project for the school. One of Zamo's former vice principals in now the principal there and I'm grateful for the opportunity to work with his kiddos. It's been a treat so far:) I drew the design out on Monday and had the first 5th grade class work on the wall yesterday. I'll see the other 2 classes Thursday and Friday. By the end of the day Friday we should be pretty close to being done!

The school has a large population of students that have family members serving in the military, so I wanted to recognize that as well as different facets of school life.

Friday, April 3, 2015

spring break sand art:)

So, after spending a couple of hours in the middle of the night chalking, I took the boy and the girl to the beach in the afternoon and made a few more drawings:)

Each of the kids did their own and they helped me out with mine, too.

The girl dancing for scale reference;)

Thursday, April 2, 2015

spring break street art.

Spring break in San Diego... woohoo!

Teaching at a school on a modified year round schedule, the kids and I don't go back until the end of April:) Before then, I've got lots to do. Painting a mural at an elementary school next week, being interviewed about art education programs and title 1 funding, being filmed teaching, going camping with the fam, seeing a couple bands with the missus, and... I think that's it.

Before all that, though, I headed out front last night and drew in the street. Made another chalk mandala. Very light traffic, got to listen to a few birds chirping and the neighborhood bar crowds heading out.

 In progress. Shown with flash. Did it by moonlight so the colors look way more similar when I'm out there ddrawing it.

 Color testing in our driveway under our light. I just had to remember what order the colors were in when I went back out to the street.

Done. Nothing like seeing what the colors actually look like in the daylight:) I'm sure it was an interesting sight for anyone saw me on top of my 10' ladder when I was taking this pic.

 Loved being able to share it with these two monkeys when they got up this morning.

 The boy shot this while I was doing a little traffic touch up.

Morning coffee out on the street. Big and small patterns:) I made that mug in 2002!