Showing posts with label art room decor. Show all posts
Showing posts with label art room decor. Show all posts

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Art Room Rainbow Tree (and a New Mural)!

I have been chompin' at the bit to share my Rainbow Tree from Treetopia with y'all...and today is the big day and big reveal...so here she is in all of her Roy G. Biv glory! 
Y'all might recall that I received a Candy Corn tree from Treetopia last month that graced my dining room. I had an absolute blast creating dozens of ornaments to transform that tree into, what I dubbed, my Monster Mash Tree! When Treetopia reached out to me again for the holidays, I happily agreed...and eagerly requested The Rainbow Tree (cue angels singing...)
Because this tree is for the art room and will stay up all year, I am not calling it a Christmas tree. We have a rainbow (ahem) of beliefs at my school and I would never want anyone to feel excluded. Therefore, it's an all-inclusive art teacherin' tree that I've decorated with art supply ornaments!
I had the tree delivered to my school and it arrived in just under two days. The box, which was labeled RAINBOW TREE caused quite a stir in the front office. I had folks dropping by all day to see if I'd unboxed the tree yet. I waited until after school and had the help of my P.E. teacher buddy Ali to put the tree together. It went up in just under 15 minutes!
We got the tree up just under two weeks ago...looking at this photo, I can see just how much has changed in this area of my art room!
That's right, this tree pushed me over the decorating edge! It inspired me to spray paint my gong (which has now become such a wonderful color wheel teaching tool), tear down my jungle lounge paper'ed walls and paint my walls (more on that shortly) and wash off my window (with the help of some third grade kiddos). I'm so excited how this space is transforming! You can see more on what I've got in store for this space here
Basically, this tree now has me viewing my life thru rainbow colored glasses...and I'm 100% cool with that.
When I settled on the idea of decorating the tree with art supplies, I decided to do some recycling. I have had those large palette shape trays forever. I think they were originally party serving trays as I think that circle may have been for the drink? I've had them in my art room for the last 15 years and I hardly ever use them. So I took them outside, flipped them over and spray painted them silver. On the front, I simply added blobs of paint. When those dried, I added brushes and a fabric bow. The crayons were actually just removed (temporarily) from this display. The smaller palettes I picked up in a pack at the Dollar Tree. I simply added some paint and allowed it to dry overnight. And the brush ornaments were created this way:

Now. Let's address what the tree had me doing to the rest of this space, shall we?
 I couldn't very well keep the jungle theme going with this blazing bright baby of a tree, could I? So when Mitch suggested I paint the gong he gave me for our 10 year wedding anniversary, I went for it. Days of rain prevented me from getting that done in the timely manner I wanted...but it's complete and I couldn't be happier. It looks like art candy! I started by painting it completely white...with many layers of primer. Then I taped it off and went section by section with paint. It's such a happy surprise when you walk in the room. The kids are LOVING it painted!
 Back in the day, I used to paint my window and decorate my surrounding wall. Here, let's take a peak:
I had a lot of fun doing this...and it really set the tone for the units we studied. You can catch more views of my Paris themed room here
It's so interesting to see my room like this. While beautiful (according to me), I love that this area of my art room is taking on a new life...one that the kids can really utilize and explore. Also...seeing that Picasso painting STILL hanging in that very same place...I realize IT.HAS.GOT.TO.GO.
 When I cleaned my windows, I fully intended to repaint them. And I might very well still do that. It gets SUPER hot in this area of my room and nearly half the class gets blinded by the daylight savings time sunshine that blasts thru in the afternoon. However, right now, I'm enjoying the light...so we'll see.
 I'm telling you, I've been INSPIRED this year to make some big changes. I've heard feedback from folks that I need to rest, that I'm going a little overboard, that I need to chill...but I'm telling you, I'm excited! Inspired! And I don't wanna stop. I was going through a SERIOUS burnout at the start of the school year. I'm so over it. And I'm so glad. I don't mean to show out or show off...I'm just truly thrilled with this thing called art teacherin' and determined to be the best that I can be. 
 Sidenote: spray painting the daylights outta a very nice and very expensive gong WILL ruin the integrity of the sound. Le sigh. But it sure is pretty! 
 So, what's up next? A new floor, a possible window painting and more things added to this area for my early finishers. AND removing that Picasso painting. Puhlease. 
 As for the tree, it's not going anywhere...I LOVE it and it's staying up forever, according to me. I think it will be a super fun addition to the art room. We've already used it as a teaching tool...and already sweet kiddos are bringing in ornaments for it and drawing pictures of it's amazingness.
 I see this tree getting a new theme every now and then....but until then, it's going to remain the art supply tree. Thank you so much Treetopia for this spectacular addition to the Johnson Elementary Art Room!
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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

DIY: Picket Fence to Color Gradation

 Hi. My name is Cassie Stephens and I cannot stop painting all thing things. Hide your kids, hide your wife, stash your cats and dogs. Me and my paint brushes are comin' for ya.
Y'all might remember some time ago, I created this Tints and Shade sign for my art room. Despite the fact that it looks kinda small in size, this picket fence thingie is actually about 3' across. Asha wanted to interrupt this blog post to share her adorable adorableness with you and provide a bit of scale: 
 If you've been hanging around this blog for a pinch, you know that I'm currently on a paint-all-the-wooden-thingies-found-at-the-craft-store bender. Just to give you an idea, I've painted letters...
A cabinet covered in paint stir sticks painted to look like pencils
And, probably the thing that started it all, the color wheel brushes:
And that's just the wooden stuff I've painted...I've also been on a redecorating bender and I can't seem to stop! I'm currently too lazy to link all of those posts...but just a quick scroll through my blog and you'll find some stuff. Lots of stuff. 
 Last night, I wasn't ready to go to bed...I'm on a week long Thanksgiving break, after all! It's party time! And, by "party time" I mean PAINT party time. I love late nights of watching movies and painting. Last night I watched Midnight in Paris (how is it that I had not seen that?! So good!) and started working on this bad boy.
I have Roy G. Biv decor coming out the WAH-FREAKIN'-ZOO in my art room (case in point here, here and here) so, as I painted this sign, I knew I didn't want another Roy G. Biv moment. We talk a lot about analogous colors and gradation so I thought that this sign would be perfect. I did toy with the idea of making a monochromatic sign...but that's pretty much what the tints and shade sign is. 
 This photo is simply here for you to admire this face. 
 The question I get every time I share something I plan to hang in my room is this: HOW DO YOU GET IT TO STAY ON THE WALL?! Yes, the age old art teacherin' question. Here's my trick: Command Velcro Strips. Get the ones that hold up to 16 lbs. This sign is heavy...and those strips work. I've been using them on everything and I've not had anything fall yet. 
 I am so enjoying redoing my art room. Having been in the same space for so many years, I just felt like it needed a fresh look. And it's making me happy and excited to work on it. The kids have fun coming in and noticing something new and different. Stay tuned for a BIG reveal on Friday...I'm so stoked about that one!
 This will hang in my art room near my tints and shade sign. I'll have to share a photo when it's up!
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Wednesday, October 4, 2017

How to Decorate Your Art Room: Alphabet Cabinets!

I have been in my current art room for close to 15 years...which is hard to believe. I've only ever taught at two schools. I spent my first five years teaching in Nashville and the last 13 in my current school in beautiful Franklin, Tennessee. Can you guess what convinced me to change schools? If you are thinking all the storage and space, you are correct! I'm absolutely spoiled rotten, I'll be the first to admit. 
 Before I arrived at my school, this room was the school library. After a renovation, it became the most glorious art room with former bookshelves becoming wall to wall cabinets. Which I love...because, well, storage. BUT I'm not wild and crazy about wall to wall brown. For years I've tried to jazz up my cabinets: word walls cabinets; artwork displays; artist showcases; you name it, I've tried it. None of those things were something I could maintain because of my self-diagnosed ADHD and my self-diagnosed chronic laziness and, also, my self-diagnosed starter/not-finisher prognosis. I really should have been a doctor because it's obvious I'm good at diagnosing. But my handwriting was far too pretty so they kicked me out of med school. 
 Recently, on a trip to the craft store, I spotted a variety of letters and I got the idea to paint letters on my cabinets. If you've been following me since the beginning of the school year, than you know I'm on a redecorating kick with the idea to decorate to educate. 
 Evidence of my recent redecoratin'? Here you go:

* My Pencil Painted Cabinet

* My Roy G. Biv Paintbrush Wall

* My Tints and Shade Sign 

* My Color Family Crayons

* My Color Wheel Brushes
So when I settled on the idea, I searched the discount bins at the craft stores, always bought the ones on super sale and used my teacher discount...not too shabby when all was said and done. I didn't bother priming the letters because of my self-diagnosed battles with chronic laziness. I just lathered on the acrylic paint and they were fine.
I didn't want the letters to be too matchy-match but I didn't want them to look out of place either. So I decided to stick with the same color palette and just went with patterns for some and plain for the other.
I worked on these sporadically between a handful of other projects (ADHD, remember? You should see my house! It's a mess of "a handful of other projects"...starter, not a finisher, remember?!). Total, it probably took me 2 and a half weeks to get these complete. I used our school wide open house as my deadline.
These letters do make me so happy. Although now I kinda wanna take down what is above my cabinets. I have finds from other countries...but it currently looks like Cracker Barrel if Cracker Barrel was a World Market.
I really had a great time painting. I really helps me unwind to get my craft on and this was a fun outlet. 
How did I get them to stick to the cabinets, you ask? Hot glue. But that stays between us, okay? Command Strips woulda worked great...but I had hot glue on hand so...you know. I used it.
 I do need to update my wee hands as some of them are no longer accurate. Not to mention, those have bee up since I first started teaching at the school! Which means they're vintage and I could probably sell 'em on ebay.
The thing with redecorating and rearranging...once you start, you just can't quit. I have a dozen more projects I'm dreaming up. The fun never ends, does it?
 Thanks for letting me share this new project with you...they letters really make my cabinets so much happier.
 Mostly because I love all things brightly colored and patterned!

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Art Teacherin' 101: Episode 39

Haha!! I'm BAAAAACK with a lil Art Teacherin' 101 action, y'all. It's been since this summer that I recorded one of these bad boys. Between the podcast, the Wednesday night FB and IG LIVE chats, I kinda thought y'all might be a little bit tired of hearing what I have to say. Unfortunately for you, I STILL GOT LOTS TO SHARE (deal wit it). 

Since we are in the throes of Back to Schoolin', my social media outlets have been blowin' up with art rooms decorated to the nines. I have gotten SO MUCH inspiration...but I've also gotten the feeling that my art room ain't never, not EVER, gonna be at it's peak and/or prime. And that's okay. I'm taking is slow and steady (some turtle told me that how to win the race). I'm going with what works, throwing out what doesn't (read: all.that.clutter.) and enjoying the process. So that's what this Art Teacherin' 101 is all about this week. At the end of the clip, I'll take you on a wee tour of the parts of my art room that make me happy...and the parts that need some more lovin'. Here you go:
If you are interested in seeing more Art Teacherin' 101's then you can subscribe to my YouTube channel right here. If you'd like me to chat about something in particular during these AT's, you just let me know! 
(more looks inside my space...a game/tour from last year)
(and a video tour I created last year for my youngers...this will give you an idea of a "before" my redecorating spree!)...

Have a super week and remember: take it easy! Decorate to educate! You can take comfort in knowing that MY ART ROOM IS WAY MESSIER THAN YOURS! 
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