Wednesday, December 12, 2012

I've been doing a couple of things differently this year, beginning with my Art 1 kids.  I decided to make drawing a priority.  That's not to say that this is all we do, but it is the main thing we do.  I am just finishing up with colored pencil techniques and came up with this assignment.  I had the kids take a large sheet of drawing paper, then create six squares on this one large sheet.  They then have to create six different drawings (of one object) on each square.  I had them paint in the negative space around the squares so that the squares would stand out more.  I am going to have them add shadows around the squares so they will look more 3-D.    I'll post the finished products as soon as they are done which will be in a few more days.
 Looking forward to the time off, already making a list of household chores that need to be done, including painting and rearranging my art studio.  I'm actually looking forward to that :)

Monday, December 3, 2012

I love working with stencils, so it's natural that I would want to do them with my art students.  The images that you are seeing were created with spray paint by my Art 1 kids.  This is the most lengthy project that I do with my kids, but they can do so many different projects with stencils. 
As soon as I have more pictures of some finished results I will post them. 

Moving on to another topic, did you hear about the four (or was it five?) states that have adopted the addition of 300 hours to the school year?  Oh geez, what the hell?  So many questions arose in my mind.  I'm pretty sure our state is headed that way, our EOC scores were terrible last year and if things don't change quickly we will only be headed towards longer school days and a longer school year.  Interesting how countries with high performing students actually have shorter school time. Hmmmm, are we headed towards the wrong direction?  I don't have all of the answers, mostly I have questions.  Why don't kids turn in their homework?  Why don't they study for tests?  Why, why, why?  Yes, it starts at home and God only knows what these kids are going through at home.  I just hope we find the answers soon.  Perhaps a career change is in the horizon.

Monday, November 5, 2012

That's me in the middle, along with two good friends of mine.  We had a booth at the Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) Festival in Old Mesilla, NM this past weekend.  A total of five teachers ( all UVAs. What's an UVA? in the festival where we sold our wares and took pictures with people that came to the festival. 
We each sold different things, I mostly sold my jewelry and a few prints of my work.  We spent the weekend there and shared a hotel room, where we drank some wine and did some art (beleive it or not :)  I had a great deal of fun, but was dragging this morning and wondered why I didn't think to take the day off.
Next up is the TAEA Convention in San Antonio, TX.  You going?  I will be there with two of my fellow UVAs and we will be selling our wares one evening.  Come by and say hello if you stop by.  I will not have my costume on, but will have a picture at my table. 
As for school, well the kids are working hard and are creating some great things.  I have changed many things this year concerning my program so I have been quite busy rewriting my lessons and curriculum.  I will post pictures of their work soon.
Hope to see you in San Antonio.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Contour faces

Art 1-This project was a continuation and finale of the modified contour drawing section that I do with my Art 1 kids.  I start them off with mcd of the hands and then move on to other objects.  The face is always daunting, especially to Art 1 kids, but after a few demos they dove right in.  They did a fantastic job and they were quite pleased with the results.  They are so different, it is hard to believe that they are from the same assignment. 
I'll be back soon with some photos from Adv. kids. 
See you soon.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

When I told my Art 2 students that they were going to draw shoes they all thought I had finally lost it.  Once I assured the kids that I knew what I was doing I had them take several photos of their and family member's shoes.  I then reviewed the photos with them and we selected the best compositions.  For this assignment all students had to use colored pencils as their medium.  I stressed to them the importance of shadows and lights.  NO black allowed!  All of the shoes had to have several layers of color, even the white shoes had to have other colors blended in.  For the most part the kids did a great job and I just love looking at my wall of shoes when I walk in to my classroom every morning.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Is this a Texas thing?

The school that I work at celebrated homecoming this week and with it the parade of homecoming mums and garters.  A student asked me out of the blue if this was a Texas thing or did every high school student wear mums and garters for homecoming?  My first reaction was to say "yes", but then I realized I might not really know.  So, is this a Texas thing?
We've had these traditions for as long as I can remember, but the mums and garters have gotten larger with time.  When I was in high school our mums were smaller than the boy's garters are today, and they were even smaller when my dad was in high school :)
Well, either way, it is always fun to see everyone's adornments and the jingling of the bells as the kids make their way down the hallway.

Monday, September 24, 2012

My Art 2 kids are working on colored pencil projects this week.  I like teaching them several different techniques using this medium and they end up with great looking drawings when they are done.  I usually teach them how to work with colored pencils prior to teaching them how to paint.  Showing them how to layer and mix colored pencils gives them a pre-view on how they will be working with paint.  Some of the kids struggle at first because I do not allow the colors black and white (sometimes just a bit) to be used in their projects.  They have to figure out how to make those colors using other colors. 
Can't wait to show you the finished product.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Students teaching students

I have an extremely talented student in my Adv. class.  The majority of my students are in awe of this young man's work, especially his pen and colored pencil drawings. 
I decided to let him give a demo to my Art 2 students and Adv. students one day last week.  He was extremely nervous at first, but once he got into the swing of things he did a great job.  The classes were very attentive to what he had to show and they are now applying what they learned to their own projects.
I hope to bring in former students into my classroom to give demos to my students.  I believe my former students are a great resource and my students will enjoy learning from them.
I will post the picture of the piece he was doing for the demo soon.

Friday, September 14, 2012


I started with a completely different project this year, mostly out of necessity. There are many schedule changes in the beginning of the school year and there is no point in starting drawing lessons until the classes get settled. 
I decided to give a lesson on imagination to my Art 1 students.  I spoke to them about creativity and imagination then had them create the pieces pictured on top.  The kids created these lines using ink and straws, they then had to use their imaginations and look for images within the lines they had created. 
The first one is a wolf, the second is butterflies and the third is a bear (I photographed it before it was completed).  I believe the students enjoyed this project and gave them some time to relax before the real work began.
The last two are from my Art 2 kids and are part of the project that I wrote about in my last post.
My Adv. and AP kids are also hard at work, I will post some pictures soon, along with a door project that my art club is working on.
Have a good weekend.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Musical instruments

Our fine arts dept. was giving away damaged instruments this summer and I was lucky enough to pick up a few.  I decided to use them for the first assignment of the new school year.  School started last Monday and as the kids walked in, I instructed them to pick up an instrument and start drawing.   The kids are finishing up, some just need to add some finishing details.
The top two are oil pastel completed by Art 3 and 4 students and the bottom two are watercolor completed by Art 2 students. 
As soon as more are completed I will take pictures and post. 

Thursday, August 2, 2012


Wow, I can't believe it has been two months since I last posted, my apologies.  I have been enjoying my summer vacations, but I have been hard at work.  I have work in five galleries and so I take full advantage of my summer vacations to work hard at creating some new inventory.  I have a few more weeks to enjoy my vacations.  How about you, are you enjoying your summer?
As for the pictures, these are from a project I did last spring with my Art 2 kids.  They had to pick an artist or movement and create a book based on what they chose.  This is one of my favorite assignments.
See you soon.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Summer Vacations

Summer vacations began last week, but it seems that I am busier than ever.  My second oldest graduated high school on Fri. and we threw a party to celebrate.  It took a good two days to recover from the celebration.  On Mon. I took my newly graduated son to the university to get some paper work done, we spent the whole day running around. 
Today I gave a teacher workshop and attended another.  After the workshops I had to run to our central office in order to be recognized by our Super and Board of Directors for the acheivement of my student that won the Congressional Art Award (prior post).  We will be leaving to Wash. DC next week.  I'm a little nervous because I have never been to Washington DC and I will have to drive around a bit. 
As for the pictures that you are looking at,  I do this project every year at the end of the year. They are paper puppets and are created by Art 1 kids.  Everything you see is made out of paper, there are NO pen or pencil marks on the puppets. 
This is a great end of the year project and the kids enjoy making these puppets.  They get better and better every year.  I did this project when I was a middle school teacher and I remember it being a great hit with my middle school kids.
Have a safe and relaxing summer.
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