Monthly Archives: October 2010

mixed media seminar: stencil print collages

Student work and students working on prints of their stencils created during our seminar time.

The last day we had some samples of wax-o stencil paper, the students prefer it and its easier to cut detail.  On my previous post, the detailed bee was cut with the wax-o paper.

below:  the text on the bottom—rhetoric


art working for the students: some mixed media samples

feather, collage, tape and stamps on cardboard:

stamps, watercolor, crayon, tape and found objects on watercolor paper covered in wax!!!

image transfer on tape-cool, right?

collage, crayon, oil pastel, stamps and acrylic medium on mat board:

sampler of stencil techniques

L to R:  negative space technique, stencil for negative space technique, print of stencil without spray adhesive, print of stencil with spray adhesive, template, print of wax-o cut stencil, wax-o template, inspiration image.

science & cooking

As I continue being a student and begin being a teacher I can’t help but think about the things that I’m interested in and how I can incorporate my interests in my lessons.  One of my BIG interests is food.  I love cooking:  9 times out of 10 I would rather cook a meal and stay in than go out to eat.  That’s in general because let’s be honest,  in the last week I’ve been to Del Seoul three times-it is really really awesome.  Cooking has so many benefits.  1.  I can control the quality of each ingredient and I know every ingredient that I include.  I worked in restaurants for ~10 years and that’s not always love they are putting in that steak.  2. Extension, there are no strangers to deal with- hostess, waitstaff, people I don’t know cooking my food, couple next to us sober and fighting or drunk and getting along…or it could be fun but seriously that is a rare pleasure…The thing is, so many restaurants in this city have been ruined by the former.  3. I can make what I like and I’m not limited to the menu of the restaurant .  Additionally, I’ve always loved my Alton Brown and his cross curricular approach to the kitchen so when I found out that Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences is offering Science and Cooking Lectures I freaked.  Check it out here:  Science and Cooking Public Lecture


Squirrel Eating Cake & Elephant Magazine

I uploadeded some pictures of my students taking pictures of the Mario vs. Alice set in the recital hall at Payton, but for some sick strange reason I can’t find them!!! So, sometimes when you can’t find pictures of photo II students taking pictures, you have to let it go and look through their network folders.  Check out this lovely jem below, it saved my yesterday from a sea of train tracks, flower close ups and fall leaves.  A squirrel eating 6th birthday cake on a trash can with a weathered plank fence that has been spray painted in a haphazard way,  I’m just learning how to work this thing kind of way.  I hope it makes you happy too— Our opportunistic friends with bushy tails hang out near us for a reason!!!  Cake!!!!

I got my moo cards yesterday-amazing.  I’m pumped to finally have cards with my art on them-before my cards had a pattern of lichen and slime mold on rocks.  Cool, appropriate but not my embroidery.

Between feeling like I’m passing out of exhaustion and working as a student teacher-I’ve been trying to read this magazine, Elephant from the UK.  So far it is written in an approachable yet contextually relevant and provocative style.  Everybody that picks this up wants to know where to get their own copy-its that cool and really rich with material for the art classroom and inspiration for artists.  If you subscribe you get a digital copy of one of their other artsy magazines and a discount on their books.  So far, from the article in issue #3 about miniatures in photography which will soon be a book- I’ll make the safe assumption that their books are spectacular as well.  Every art teacher and person interested in the arts should get this magazine, now!

This is the synopsis of Elephant Magazine from goodreads: Elephant—a quarterly magazine from the makers of Frame—focuses its keen eye on art and visual culture.

Lately, creative individuals have been protesting against the corporate nature of things, often taking the initiative and setting up new independent ventures. Elephant looks at how it’s done. Elephant visits art and design studios, peers over shoulders, steps on graffiti artists’ toes, disturbs rehearsals, interrupts takes, rides fixed-gear bikes, and plays the latest computer games.

Elephant’s tone of voice is direct, sincere, and multidisciplinary. Elephantbelieves it’s time for less cynicism and more encouragement for outbursts of spontaneity—think of those that gave birth to futurism, dadaism, and surrealism.

Elephant is the first and only visually oriented art magazine that features over two hundred pages of high-quality, up-to-date, original creative material from all over the world.

What readers will find in each issue of Elephant:

Meetings: This section focuses on ideas, personalities, and cultures.

Research: Shines a light on forecasts, movements, and styles.

“Studio Visits” includes chats in ateliers, garages, and back gardens.

Economies: Looks at how people started their businesses, from initial ideas to actual plans and bank loans.

Cities: Highlights creative cities around the globe, sharing images, characters, and special stories.

The Working Proof

I woke up because somebody fell off a building in my dream.  Good morning 4:30!  Student teaching has made me aware of the fact that I do my best work in the early morning hours.  I think its because I haven’t yet been influenced by the buzzing bodies that surround me.  Note to self:  bring airborne to school today.

I digress, the initial reason for this quick am post is to shine some light on  an amazing organization that I just encountered.

It’s called, The Working Proof:

Artists create an artwork for a charity of their choice and they sell it on this website.  A fraction of the sales price goes to the charity and the prices are within reach ~30 to ~60 USD.

NOTE:  This is an excellent way to focus students learning through the arts by prompting them to research a charity of their choice and design a poster for it.  An art sale could earn money for the charities and be used to cover printing supplies.  I’ll be working on this lesson plan.  Inspiration!!!


kindles can’t be used for kindling: and other reasons you should just buy a book

This man:  

Johannes Gutenberg (1398-1468) is the man responsible for modern book printing.   You probably know this already but his invention of movable type & the printing press was the big one that was responsible for spreading information to the masses-you know,  before the one I’m using right now-the internet.  It is the most influential invention of the Modern Period: ~late 15th century-~19th century.   Moveable type combined with the printing press sparked the fuse that exploded to reveal an intellectual gold mine:  scientific revolution, knowledge based economy, education as a priority.

What lit this fire under my ass???  A few days ago I walked into the Barnes and Noble on State and Division to redeem my gift cards and I was bothered by the persistence of their nook salesman at the door.  I was already walking into the store so chances are I’m a customer-it is a book store so chances are I like books-why try to sell me a nook digital reader kindle knock off like I want one!!!  I told him no, thanks.  Then, I told him NO.  He didn’t understand-I think the digital books are frying his brain.  He persisted so did I.  I like to share my books so I asked him if I can share my books with the nook????  His reply, “Yes.  But only once and only for a week.”  Then I said, “well, that doesn’t seem practical. It sounds disappointing.”

A book for a week?  How do you justify that $10??? Share it once, keep it for a couple of weeks.  No thank you!

Doesn’t selling books through this device make your book store and frankly, your job standing in that bookstore superfluous???

When people are on their kindles on the train I can’t tell what they are reading.  How do you start conversations with similar minded people when they are hiding behind their Louis Vuitton designer chip proof kindle case???  They could be reading smut for all I know!!!  When people are hiding I get suspicious and often assume the worst.  Or, maybe the suits are reading what they love to read, Harry Potter perhaps???  They can and they don’t have to save face on the train with the NYTimes.  That could be a good thing.  Ultimately people are moving further away from each other and it makes me sad.

Sometimes I want to live in another era:  Victorian or Edwardian for example.  I mean, the Victorians had a separate vessel for celery!!!  Craftsmanship so highly regarded and information is edited to what you can read that is in your hands. When people wanted directions they probably talked to other people, they didn’t reach for their compass app.   Now what you can read is all around us in the air, on the train, tv, internet, phones… A simpler life where I could focus on what really mattered to me without being distracted by Rachel Zoe and pop ups!!!  I use technology and in some instances I love it, this is only about digital book reading devices!!!  I don’t want people forgetting the past because of some marketing convenience scheme–they are taking you for your $$$ and your minds.

Environmentalists may argue that their kindle is saving the worlds oxygen supply.  So if you want to save the environment, go to a used bookstore (suck it up if they ask you to check your purse at the door, I’m making a liability contract for them to sign)  and buy a used book!!!  They are cool.  Look at them, they hold history in their pages!  They are often less expensive (exceptions:  rare and out of print) and often they have remnants from their past owners tucked between the pages (I’ve found old photos, letters, lists…)  It’s an anthropological study!

Those same environmentalists will kick themselves when they are lost on their vision quest with nothing to start their fire.  I’ve found that prologues can be excellent kindling!!!I love the environment but I also think that it’s more resourceful to reduce, reuse, and recycle.  You can’t do any of that to a digital reader.

Maybe today Gutenberg would have been this man:

Amazon CEO and inventor of the kindle.  A man who lives by the new set of rules that Johannes’s printing press published.

So, one last thing, if something falls out of your digital reader you probably won’t get excited, you’ll get your warranty.

Don’t buy a kindle!!! Buy a book!!!

Dream Scene Recipe

I’m experimenting with the Dream Scene Recipe lesson that I’m cooking up for AP Photo.

They will be creating similar but larger 2-D sets to explore aperture and shutter speed.