Saturday, March 02, 2013

Studio Art 101

Many people don't know that I studied studio art in college. I tend to be a closet artist, displaying only my favorite works and humbly admitting that I created them when asked.

I love all things artistic. Getting messy with paint and glue, creating new beauty from old materials, organizing and layering totally different compounds to make a stunning or interesting piece, telling a story in an unexpected way. There are so many other parts to creating art as well that I love.

I feel like the process of creating is sometimes more enjoyable that the actual outcome. Which is probably why I choose to keep most of my projects in the garage; they weren't meant to be displayed. They were meant to be an expression of thought and feeling, kind of like a journal in some ways.

I have used art in many forms as a creative outlet where I didn't have to worry what anyone else would think. Where I could just relax, think, and process.

Since getting my teaching degree I had not really used any of the artistic components of my studies. Therefore, I was very nervous when I recently interviewed for a teaching position with the Arts Center in Corvallis. I was so pleased that the director loved my work and pretty much offered me the position right there.

It is a part time gig on days when I don't have school and possibly a few weeks this summer. I am just pumped that I get to teach art classes! Getting to teach kids about art, and teach them about other subjects using art as well as using art as a form of expression is awesome! I can't believe they are paying me to use two of my talents and passions.

My first class was a week or so ago and I just wanted to share the project we did and some of the process and finished pieces.

The theme for the day was Pre-columbian Civilizations. There were three different teaching artists throughout the day. A mask maker, a clothing designer and me. I chose to have the students make a relief sculpture with natural elements.

We looked at the work of the mound building tribes of North America and also the Nazca Lines from South America. Students then chose an animal that was meaningful to them and used line drawings and a building up technique (relief) to make their sculptures. They used some natural plant materials as decoration and embellishment on top.

It was a great day and I think the students really liked what they worked on. My next class will be at the beginning of April. The theme is Fantasy Fiction of Spain. I am not totally sure what I will be teaching but I think I may do either a fabric collage or some print making.

Hopefully there will be more stories to come and I will try to post pictures as well.

Thanks for reading!


Step 1: Line Drawing and Building up with Clay
Step 2: Cover with Glue and Paper

Step 3: Add Natural Materials
Step 4: Paint and Collage with Added Materials

This was our studio for the day!

Students building with clay
Students adding natural elements and painting

These were some of the highlights from the day. 

Bald Eagle: representing power, strength and beauty

Left: Coiled Snake: representing wisdom, balance, and healing
Right: Beaver and Snake: representing hard worker, caring and industriousness

My favorite from the day.
Wolf: representing loyalty and compassion

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