Tuesday, May 20, 2014

What's in a Name?

In 5th grade, we worked with line, shape, color, and repetition to create a patterned board. During a lesson on abstract art, we learned that abstract artists are not trying to represent the world in a realistic way but look at the world from a different perspective. We discussed how our name is a common object that we "draw" almost daily. We must follow the rules when we write our name. As artist, we used the  letters of our names cut from our patterned boards to turn our common 2-D, start it with a capital, left to right names into 3-D sculptures. The students were required to use all the letters of their name in either positive or negative shapes. At first, many were stumped on how to begin. I encouraged them to think about building with a shape and not a letter and they were able to work past it. 

The sculptures are still their names but with an artistic, abstract approach. I've seen this project on Pinterest but found a plan here http://artsforlifenc.org/projects/?p=1268  We used scrap mat board for greater strength and stability but cutting out all those letters with the die cut machine took a few afternoons with my student teacher's help :) Bless her!




Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Time for Cupcakes!

End of the year and time to celebrate! What better inspiration can we get but from Wayne Thiebaud, an American pop artist who depicted everyday objects in his paintings. Pastries and ice cream were common themes and definitely grabbed the attention of the 3rd graders. Pinch pots were formed as the bottom and top of the cupcake box and "toppings" were added using the score and slip technique. After the forms were fired, bright colors were used to add more details and mimic Thiebaud's use of color. A final coat of sealer was added to the top for a bit of shine to the frosting.

They look good enough to eat!

one of our inspiration paintings by Wayne Thiebaud





Gigi's hasn't got anything on us :)
Below is how I survive having 4 grades with
overlapping clay projects.
What a great space (and sanity) saver.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Clay: Face Jugs and Bird Baths

The school year is quickly coming to an end and I am reminding myself, once again, to pull out the clay before the winter break next year! The students do such a great job, are totally focused and create some wonderful artworks.

Because of my planning (or lack there of) there is never
enough time to display their works for all to admire.
Note to self . . . bring out the clay earlier :)
Fifth graders created face jugs based on the ones attributed to African slaves and later southern potters such as the Meaders family in North Georgia. Students used hand-building techniques such as pinch and coil with modeled forms as details. Scoring and slipping was used to join details to the jug shape.

For a brief overview of
hand-building techniques, click here.

Second graders created pinch pot bases, modeled bird shapes, and used the score/slip method to join the pieces. After glazing, floral marbles were placed in the pot. During the glaze firing, theses marbles melted and cracked to create the water of the bird bath.