Tuesday, May 23, 2017

In the Art Room: Art Show 2017, 2-D Displays

 I recently shared with y'all the 3-Dimensional portion of our art show...today I thought I'd showcase the 2-Dimensional side. But before I have to do that, I must give a HUGE virtual high five and hug to Molly, Donna, Lori, Terri, Paula, Camilla and the rest of the crew for hanging EVERYTHING that you see in these photos. Without moms like these, there would not be an art show. For them, my young artists and I are forever thankful!

Now, let's take a tour of the show!
Almost every project you see here and in the video can be found on my blog our my YouTube channel. Feel free to use in your art teacherin' world. A shout out is always appreciated. 

In this blog post, I thought I'd also answer some frequently asked art show questions:
Kindergarten displays. I love how fun and funny their artwork is. It always makes me smile to see what they create. All these projects can be found right here on my blog. Just use the search bar. 

Do you hang everything that the kids have created all year? Yes. Everything. My room is very big (it used to be the school library) so storage is not an issue...staying organized, however, is. It's just not my nature to be a Lady of Organization. And I'm cool with that...but it is a pain when it's art show preppin' time! "Where did I put Mrs. So-in-So's classes art?!" Yeah. That may happen multiple times during art show season. 
 Kindergarten selfies and line monsters.

How is your artwork hung? We struggled for YEARS finding something that works. We use deer mesh adhered to the wall with 3M's Gaffer's Tape. About three weeks prior to the art show, the moms begin hanging the mesh which we purchase off Amazon. We try to leave it up from one year to the next but sometimes it gets damaged. The teachers use it throughout the year to display the kids' work. Here's a little more about that:
We've used this method for the last three years and there is no going back, we love it! And the artwork actually stays up...which, if you are in a building with cinder blocks, you know that is no easy feat. 
 With this much art, we have to display it "salon style" with art from floor to ceiling!

How do you get volunteers? The moms I have are AMAZING! In fact, my mom-in-charge this year doesn't even have a child at my school anymore! She's just so stinkin' incredible and good at what she does, she came back for more. Honestly, just reaching out to the room moms and requesting that they contact other parents is the best way if you've never used volunteers before. My mom helpers came in nearly every day for three weeks solid to make this magic happen. Not only did they hang artwork but they also framed, matted and did the thousand other small tasks that goes into the making of an art show this big. 
 First grade work...the Bebo birds are a fave of mine. 

Is your art show a fundraiser? I did two art shows this year. In the winter, I used Artome which is a fundraiser and I LOVED that experience as it was super simple and raised a good amount for our art program. Our spring show is not usually a fundraiser although we have taken donations for the local animal and homeless shelters before, one time raising $1200!
 The first grade had so much work! They flew through their projects this year. 
My mom helpers were ninjas at hanging artwork in hard-to-hang places, y'all. 

How do you get people to come to your art show? The art show at my school was established before I got there. It's a tradition at my school...one that I try to make bigger and better every year. Not only is it an art show, but it is also an ice cream social with free ice cream served up by our fourth graders in the school cafeteria. Often times we'll also have a book fair on the same night to bring in even more folks. We always have a huge turnout.
 Second grade created some of my favorite pieces this year. I am loving the weavings, the hearts and the rainbow books!
How do you manage your time to get everything done? I'm the worst time manager, y'all. Knowing this, I try to start early. After winter break, I try to get myself into art show mode by sticking around after school, framing pieces and gathering up my thoughts on what our theme will be. After spring break, we dive in to clay with that theme. Once clay is complete in March, April becomes the crunch month for the show.
Why do you hang up everything from everyone? We do a couple of other art shows in the community that showcases a handful of kiddos. This is a great self-esteem booster...for that small amount of kids. I always worry about the other kids who don't have artwork featured. I was never a kid who got picked for such things...and it always left me with a sour taste in my mouth. I carry that with me as an adult. I never want a child to feel like their creative work is not good enough. I want to celebrate all of the kids and all of their efforts...which is why I do my art shows like this. It's an INSANE amount of work. I'm not even gonna lie: I work on Sundays and put in many 12 hour days. But, in the end, it's so worth it. 
 I love having displays in this big bank of windows!
Do you repeat your projects or do new ones each year? Honestly, I like a challenge and I like change. I may repeat a process, like the marker prints for those floating leaves you see below, but I rarely repeat a project completely. You learn something each time you teach a lesson...what worked, what didn't, what can be improved upon, added or taken away. I also love learning new ideas and methods from other art teachers and I get excited to share them with my students. So, no. I don't usually repeat projects which means much more work for me but it does keep things interesting and the art shows every changing. 
Who takes the artwork down? So parents hang it up right outside the classroom teacher's doors. I do that so the kids can easily find their work. This also makes taken the art down a lot easier. A few days after the art show, the teachers take down the artwork during our field day and various other activity days that seem to fill the end of the school year. 
 How do you insure the artwork gets home safely? The fabulous assistants at my school create a paper portfolios for each child in our school. They start right after spring break and fold large sheets of bulletin board paper in half and staple the edge. Many teachers have the kids decorate their portfolios while they take their work down. I love how dedicated the teachers and assistants are to making sure the kids' work gets home safely. 
 I tried several new techniques with my third graders this year and they really rocked it. 
 String art was something I'd only done with my fourth graders previously. This year, I did it with third grade and they loved it. 
 Don't the kids get upset that they have to wait all year to take their artwork home? Because we've always done end of the year art shows, the kids know that they have to wait to take their work home. One thing the kids are always excited to take home are their clay projects. That's why I wait until after spring to do those projects: so the kids won't have to wait as long to take them home! It also makes storing those bigger pieces a lot easier knowing that I only have to find a place for them for about a month...not longer.
 Seeing these fourth grade works of art makes me sad...I'm miss these artists!
 At the end of the school year, even though my kids have worked all year, I only have a handful of works of art from them. Why is that?! I have found this to definitely be the case with my third and fourth grade artists. The answer is easy: they do projects that are more detailed and time consuming! You are teaching them so many techniques in one project...it can take a while. Also, my fourth graders had three 3-D pieces on display this year: sewn and stuffed monsters, plaster candy hearts and clay bobble heads. All of those took many weeks to complete leaving us with less time for 2-D works of art. It's okay! As long as your artists are creating and having fun, you are on the right track. 
I hope you enjoyed the art show! Another one in the books. Love to hear about your art shows in the comments, y'all. 

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4 comments:

  1. Awesome Art Show Cassie!! Thanks for sharing and being honest about the ups and downs of the process!! It is a challenging time of year as we are all almost out of steam. I do find having the Art Show near the very end of the year helps keep my head in the game, and the last month usually flies by. I am in NH, so this year we don't get out until 6/27! Lots of snow days, but usually after the Art Show I do the supply orders and grades and Voila! Have a wonderful summer! Wish I lived closer to enjoy your Art Teacher camps!! Cheers, Deb

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  2. It is amazing that you put up everything from every student! You are right, it is so important to have every student represented. I do this another way. We have our spring show, called "favorites 2017". I give back ALL the student work at one time, and the student chooses their ONE FAVORITE PIECE to exhibit in the show. Criteria is up to them. Could be 1)piece they love the most; 2) their most successful piece;3) the piece they had the most fun making, etc. in this way, the students truly have ownership, it is their show, not mine. And turnout for our grand opening gala is always well attended because every student is included.

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  3. Nice arts done & thanks for sharing how to attracts the people in your store. I liked these topics always searchinf for this. I have very much enthusiasim that my son should do some good thing in this art or painting. So now he joined in Euro Art Studio for devloped in his skill.

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  4. Hi Cassie, is the tape only on the edges? OR is it hidden underneath throughout the mesh areas? I'm thinking about making a small display for my rotating artwork that gets hung up :)

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Thank you so much for your comments. I appreciate each and every one :)