Showing posts with label Jim Dine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jim Dine. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Hearts with Wings Sculptures

GOING LIVE TONIGHT, JANUARY 4TH AT 8PM CST RIGHT HERE. We'll be chatting about What We Wish We Knew our first year(s) teaching. Chat soon! Until then...

How about a fun heart sculpture project where kids discover an artist and use them as their inspiration? That's exactly what I had in mind when I came up with this simple and effective project using papier mache pulp and plaster! My buddy Natalie Waggenspack over at smART Class (one of my favorite art teacherin' blogs!) inspired this lesson. Here is the process video with an introduction to the artists I found inspiring:
Originally I was calling this project the Jim Dine Hearts Sculpture...but I didn't want my artists to feel limited to one artist. Shoot, they don't even have to use an artist's style as their inspo, they can come up with their own. But if you are looking for a project where your students do a little bit of artist investigation, I think this would be super fun.
I think this project would best be suited for students from third grade on up. I'll be doing the Candy Heart Sculpture with my fourth graders so I might either reserve this lesson for next your or try it with my younger kids. Here are the supplies needed:

* Aluminum foil. I really liked using the sheets of foil as they were precut and just the right size.

* Activa Product's Celluclay or Fast Mache. Both are very similar and work great. If I were doing this with my kids, I would definitely premix the clay. 

* Activa Product's Rigid Wrap Plaster. Used for the wings.

* Tempra or acrylic paint.
 I love the work of contemporary artist Chris Uphues (I know my students will as well...check out his street art, so fun!) and he inspired this heart. 
And I had Frida in mind when I painted this heart. I really loved creating these hearts and see so much potential with this project. 
Love to hear from you if you give this project a try! Don't feel limited to the sculpture supplies I used. I really think a variety of mediums could be used to create these fun hearts.

Full disclosure: Activa Products and I are working together to create fun projects with their products. I received these sculpture supplies from them. Thank you, Activa Products! 

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Tuesday, June 9, 2015

In the Art Room: School-Wide Collaborative Series, Our School has Heart, Part II and A Giveaway!

 Hi, kidz! Welcome to the second installment of postings from my school-wide collaborative series (btw, I've decided "school-wide collaborative" is just too much work for my mouth. Hence forth, it will go by it's abbreviated and funner name: scollab. Pronounced skoal-lab, not school-lab. Cuz art class in a school lab is just bound to end in 'splosions and flames. Which actually sounds super funner-er.) In this here post, Ima share with you one of the happiest scollabs we did this year: Our School has Heart Mural!
If this looks vaguely familiar to you, that's because I blerged about the first phase of this project here. This lovely scollab masterpiece hangs happily in the front office of my school. Previously, the front office was referred to as the DMV for it's warm and welcoming wall color (what is that, Sherwin William's "Institution White"? "Padded Room Gray"? "The Last Color I See Before My Date with the Principal Blue"?). It was mentioned that some art might cheer the place up and that's all it took for my ears to prick up. ART?! Did somebody say...art?!
We started this project way back at the start of February so love was in the air. Which explains the smell. I decided that each kiddo was gonna contribute and each grade level would do a little something different. I'll give you the quickie version here but you can visit this post for the full story

The kindergarteners were given a paper heart template to trace in black oil pastel. Then they doodled in warm or cool colors and then proceeded to water color the daylights outta that thing in either warm or cool. 
The first graders were given 3" square pieces of felt in whatever color they liked. Then they traced that same hear template in chalk and painted with tempera. Painting on felt is really rad cuz it gives the piece this almost oil painted appearance. If the kids painted the hear with warm colors, they were to reverse that color scheme for the background. Puffy paint was added because why not?! Puffy paint is the jam.
Second grade town created these pipe cleaner hearts that they yarn bombed and bead attacked. I had the pleasure of hot gluing them to the felt of their choosing. 
Third grade thought that Christmas came early when I showed them how to embroider. Every last one of them enjoyed this so much and was able to complete their stitching (and button sewing!) in one hour long class. 
 Needle felting was introduced to my fourth grade students. We really enjoyed this and only had one bleeder (those needle felting tools are both sharp and serrated, y'all. They ain't for sissies). 
As the students completed their work, I started to lay them out on two pieces of foam core. I happened to have two 3' X 6' pieces of foam core to my name because, well, why not? I originally thought of doing a value gradation but rainbow order ended up looking the best. 
Hot gluing over 400 hearts wasn't exactly my idea of a good time. The upside is I no longer have finger prints and the cops will never find me! Take that, coppers! 
Once all the gluing was complete, I took the two boards to the office and my super awesome bookkeeper buddy and my radical rockstar custodian friend hung them up for all to see. 


Don't miss! I'll be presenting on school-wide collaboratives at the AOE conference this summer
And now, let's talk GIVEAWAY! Last week's winner is Lil! When asked what her fave collaborative project was, she wrote:

This year my third grader class created large, beautiful, textured and patterned frogs. Then each table created their own scene on huge mural paper. There was an outdoor birthday party, with an airplane toting a birthday wish sign. One group made a water theme park setting with a lazy river - one frog was definitely relaxin' on his tube!! Another group made a nail salon - now who doesn't like a good froggie pedi??! Oh my gosh, the kids absolutely loved working together on such a huge creation. Do you think it was because they got to spread out on the floor to paint and cut and create??!!!!


Congrats, Lil! I hope you enjoy the artsy t-shirts!

Now, I know most of y'all are enjoying your summer days. How 'bout you spend some time creating with a good book? To enter this giveaway, just do the following:

* Tell me what dream scollab you would create with your students. A permanent mural? A tile project? I'd love to hear! Maybe if we start dreaming big now, we'll have the energy to make it happen come this fall!

* Leave your email address in your comments so I can contact you.
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Friday, February 13, 2015

DIY: A Needle Felted Tribute to Jim Dine

Well, hey there, love birds. Lemme be the first to wish you Happy Valentine's Day! Or, as it should truly be known, Happy-Hallmark-Marketing-Scheme Day, amiright? I mean, if I gotta hear the chic on NPR try to sell me another 50 Shades of Gray teddy bear (seriously, NPR? You can't go from StoryCorps to PornTeddy in a matter of minutes, it ain't right.) or the radio talk show host tell me that "buying her roses will warm her heart and clear your conscious" (like, ew, jerk face) Ima gonna scream. I'm totes over the commercialism of what's otherwise a beautiful thing: love. After all, tis the inspo for this here DIY.
So last Saturday I was puttering around, stitching a couple of dresses, working on a little painting project, completely avoiding housework; you know, the ushe. It was then I suddenly realized that V-Day was rapidly approaching and I needed a new dress for the occasion. I immediately thought of the artist Jim Dine and was inspired to needle felt a dress dedicated to him! So I promptly set about googling Jim Dine's hearts and found this lovely: 
 I loved it straight away mostly cuz it looked so art teacher-y. Splatters, splats and splashes of color? Say no more, Dine. You had me at splatter (wait, that don't sound right.)
And here's my tribute. I was excited to use some new gold tinsel-y stuff I'd picked up at a fibers shop. I used it in place of the black outline seen in Dine's heart.
Now, like I said, I got this idea on a Saturday and didn't actually start until late that night. Since time was limited, I knew I couldn't spend forever on this here project. So just one heart was to go in the center of this lil thrifted number. 
Whenever I start my felted numbers, I always sketch in chalk. It's the perfect thang because you can just wipe it off with the sleeve of your sweater (ahem. You should see my yellow-y sweater sleeves). And, don't forget, you can needle felt on just about any surface. I've worked on wool, jersey knit and whatever this dress is. Sweatshirt? I dunno. It's needle felt-able. 
 I started by placing my needle felting cushion inside the dress and shaping the heart before I commenced stabbing it. If you've no clue how needle felting works, friend, don't you sweat it. I've got you covered. You can watch these super vintage vid clips where I annoyingly explain the process. My apologies in advance. 

See? Like, insanely simple. If I can do it, well, drunk monkeys dancing on rooftops can do it. So you should be safe. 
 After the white background was complete, the layers of colors were added. I stared with the biggest and lightest swathes of color first.
Then layered smaller and brighter colors on top of that. The gold tinsel was a weird thing to needle felt cuz it wasn't as cooperative as wool. 
 And that was pretty much it. Three episodes of Project Runway All-Stars and I was el finito.
And ready to introduce my students to Jim Dine and needle felting! I hinted that I introduced our new heart-themed mural with an artist and that was, of course, Mr. Dine. I created this prezi for the kids that you are welcome to borrow and change to your liking. I'm really digging Dine's drawings of tools and totally using that theme in a drawing unit. Have any of y'all done that? 
When I introduced my fourth graders to needle felting, they really loved seeing my dress and knowing that I'd used the same technique. For this fourth grade project, I had enough needle felting tools, roving and a foam cushion for each student. They really enjoyed this process and proved that they could handle using a super sharp tool with only a little blood and finger poking. 
 So sweet, right? You can read more about the "Our School has Heart" mural here
Until next time, I do hope you and your 50 Shades of Awkward Teddy Bear have a super heart-filled Valentine's Day! xox!
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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

In the Art Room: Our School has Heart! Mural Project, Part 1

Okay. So. I started ANOTHER mural project. I got the idea this weekend when I suddenly realized that Valentine's Day was this Saturday and I needed something to wear (other than last year's Catty-Valentine Dress and Poodle-Love Frock. Cuz there's more than just two days in a week, y'all). So I decided that I'd create an artist-themed Valentine's dress (with an emphasis on hearts. Can you guess who my inspo might be? Virtual high five to the winner! I'll share my dress later this week). And whilst I was working on that, I got this Big Fat Hairy Light Bulb Above My Head that everyone in our school should create a heart for what we are dubbing The Johnson Elementary School has Heart mural! Yippie!

There's only one prob. We're already in the middle of our Village of Kindness mural. 

Now, what you might not know about me is that I like to work on, like, twenty things at once. In fact, at home right now, I've got three dresses in the works, a painting and a felted number. I get an idea, I act on it right away before the excitement fades and the motivation is gone. It drives me crazy, having so many projects everywhere and, yet, it's how I live my life. It's also how I run my art room. I ain't braggin'. I'm just sayin'.

More on that in a pinch. For now, lemme show you what every grade level is up to for our mural!
Mural Measurements: 

So for our mural, I'm using these two huge sheets of foam core that were donated to me. They're about 3' X 6'. I went to the school nurse on Monday cuz I heard she was really good at the math. After a lil clicking away on her calculator, she told me that if each of our 366 students created a work of art that was 3.25" we'd have our boards covered. Great, now, what will each create?
First Grade Painted and Puffy Paint Outlined Hearts:

Now I happen to be the owner of a cache of felt. I dunno where I got it from but I have a ton. Because I want this mural to hang for a while, I didn't wanna use fade-tastic construction paper. So I thought for most of the projects, I'd use up that felt. A lovely helper mama and a sweet unsuspecting art education student were promptly put to work on cutting the squares out.

I do want some consistency with our hearts. So, for first grade, they used chalk to trace a heart template (I know you template-haters are having a heart attach. Get it, HEART attach!? Lawd, I shoulda been a comedian). After tracing, they were instructed to use the warm colors for the heart and the cool for the background. Once finished, they outlined their heart in their choice of puffy paint. This took us all of 25 minutes.
Second Grade Yarn-Bombed Hearts:

Because I didn't want this to interrupt our previously scheduled program, I wanted these to only take us 25 minutes. Most managed with a coupla minutes to spare.
After picking out their felt color and pipe cleaner, they folded their pipe cleaner in half. The heart templates were on the tables for them to lay their pipe cleaner on top of and mold around the shape. They created an X in the middle where the two wires overlapped and then twisted. The cool thing about the pipe cleaner is that the kids didn't really have to tie the string on because of the grippy-ness of the 'cleaner. A wee bit of knot-tying was needed but these kids had recently finished Ojo de Dios so knot tying is no biggie for them.  Once finished, I hot glued them to their felt fabric.
Third grade Stitched Hearts:

Now I do see my third and fourth graders for an hour. We jumped right in. These dudes have used my sewing machines before and a couple of them are in my after school sewing club but most are inexperienced. They were thrilled to learn! I started by having them trace the square in chalk and the heart in the Sharpie color they planned to stitch with. After that, they were to hoop their design before returning to the floor for instruction.
There I showed 'em how to thread their needle and start stitching. These guys totally nailed it. I think third grade must be the right age to really start in with stitchin' stuff.
Our tapestry needles were too small to sew the button so we just glued them on. Later, I'll have to trim these guys to add them to the mural. 
Fourth Grade Needle Felting:

Y'all know I loves me some needle felting. I've always been apprehensive to give it a go with the kids because of the razor sharp needles used. So I started the class by saying the following:

"Today we are going to use a dangerous tool [gasps from the girls] because we are dangerous artists [cheers from the boys]. I'm not kidding. There might be blood [pin-drop silence]."
That being said, we only had one bleeder. Which is pretty good if you ask me. I've taught adults before and there's been more casualties. 
Again, we traced. The kids were told they could either use all cold colors for their heart or all warm. And then reverse that for the outside of their hearts. 
We did bust several needles but the results were pretty spectacular.
Kindergarten Watercolor Resist Hearts:

So my kindergarten friends have been painting all year. We are, like, experts. However, this was our first time to venture into watercolor paint town. So I was a little nervous. We talked a lot about the dif between watercolor and tempera. I emphasized that watercolor is translucent, not opaque. 
After tracing their heart template in black, they added designs in oil pastel before using the warm colors to paint. They turned out lovely and the kids loved using a new medium. 

And there you have it. Yet another mural started. It's so funny cuz when my parent volunteer and student assistant came in yesterday morning and I told 'em the mural news, the convo went down like this:

Helper Mama: Wait a minute. Another mural? [eyeing the houses on the floor].

Me: Uh-huh!

Student Assistant: You mean, before the other mural is finished [exchanging a worried look with the mama]?

Me: Yup!

Crazy has no bounds, y'all. Wish me luck and lemme be the first to wish ya Happy Valentine's Day! 



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