Showing posts with label artsy book club. Show all posts
Showing posts with label artsy book club. Show all posts

Sunday, January 25, 2015

What the Art Teacher Wore #131 and Happy Surprises

 Dorkin' Out Tuesday: My sweet baby bro got me that rainbow tie and suspenders for Christmas. Upon my request. He asked mom, "Does she REALLY want this stuff?" You know it! One kid said I looked like "Dr. Art". I'll take that! blouse: thrifted; rainbow tie and suspenders: Amazon; skirt and tights: Target

Hey, y'all! I hope you had a super fantastical week, are all rested up and ready to roll for that one day of the week that I swear always seems to come a day early: Monday. My week was an exciting one. I found out on Wednesday that I was crowned Teacher of the Year at my school (and by "crowned", I mean no such thing. I was, however, given a lovely amount of paperwork to complete). I was very honored as I work with the best educators in all the land. It was funny, when the announcement was made, I was in the middle of teaching third grade. When the kids heard my name, they were all, "Hey! That's YOU, Mrs. Stephens!" And I was all, "Are you sure? I thought there was another Mrs. Stephens at this school. I think she teaches Deep Sea Fishing." To which they rolled their eyes and gave me their best, "Mrs. Steeeeepheeeeeens" reprimand. 

Then, just this morning, I found out that this here blog received this: 

That's right, y'all. Ima First Place Wild Card. Can I get that printed on a t-shirt, please? Can I go around acting (even more) like a crazy person and when someone questions my behavior, can I do this...

In all seriousness, I'm excited to receive such a title! Thank you so very much for the nominations and the votes. It really means a lot. If you've not checked out the list of winners (as well as nominations!), please be sure to do so. There are so many incredible art teacherin' bloggers out there who I'd be lost without their advice, tips -n- tricks as well as friendship. Often times, teaching art can be like teaching on a deserted island without a single soul in sight who "gets" you. Thankfully, the interwebs have made it so we can all stay connected and sane. Ish. 

Oh and one last thing before I shuddup. I now have 700 lovely "followers" of this here blog! Now, normally, I don't like a follower but in this case, if you wanna follow me, well then, who am I to stop you? Welcome, all you new readers! It's super fantastical to have you here.

AND one last-last thing (I swear), since I've blabbed enough in this post, we'll resume our Artsy Book Clubbin' chat next week, ermkay? Cuz, let's be honest, you stopped reading this post like 5 minutes ago, didn't you? THAT'S what I thought. Y'all have a great week and I'll be back attcha soon.
 Prom Dress Wednesday: I love this stinkin' dress, specially with a big fat crinoline underneath cuz I feel like I'm going to some sorta artsy prom all day long. Course, the crinoline drives the kids crazy because every time I walk past their table, my big skirt knocks their painting/pencil/papers/you-name-its off their table. "Mrs. Stephens! Your swishy skirt took my paper!" Sorry, not sorry. sweater: vintage, thrifted; necklace: The Paper Source; Jackson Pollock Dress: made by me, details here; tights: Target
 Sharpen Yer Pencils Thursday: So I got this dress a while back and it's been super popular among art teachers for obvious reasons. Howevers, if you do order this dress, just be aware that the catalog which will flood your mailbox is, um, very interesting. One that you'll wanna have stashed away when company comes over. sweater: thrifted; dress: The Pyramid Collection; tights: Target
Runs with Scissors Friday: I love a skirt with a good art teacherin' motif, don't you? sweater: vintage, thrifted; top and tights: Target; bow belt: Pin Up Girl Clothing; scissor skirt: ModCloth
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Sunday, January 18, 2015

What the Art Teacher Wore #130 and Artsy Book Clubbin'

Monday, Monday: Any Mamas and Papas fans out there? I went through a seriously intense hippie phase in high school (in-between my alternative and retro phases) and they were among my fave bands. In fact, I've been called Mama Cass a good amount of times in my life (along with Casserole and Caster Oil {huh?}) which is cool because I always loved the lady. But wait, how did I get here again? Oh, yeah, Monday, Monday. Wow. scarf: Charleston; painted dress: made by me, DIY here; pink tights: Target; World's Biggest Belt: Amazon; gold leafed booties: made by me, DIY here

Hey, how are ya? Feelin' good? Reading any good books? Hopefully you are tiptoeing into The Art Spirit with the Artsy Book Club and ready to chat! I know I am...
Now, last week I suggested we read up to page 51 but I only made it to 27 for a couple of reasons. This isn't a fast read. This is a slow read: take in some paragraphs, let your brain chew on it, stew it over, see how it might apply to your life and then read some more. I was really enjoying it, underlining nearly everything, destroying the columns with my notes until I got to page 20 when he wrote at letter to a class of art students. Don't get me wrong, it was all good but just not as easy to gobble up and swallow. I found myself having to reread several passages because my mind was starting to wonder. Did you all struggle with that portion too?

Prior to that, I have some super fave quotes that I just have to share. The man was like a Super Teacher. I can't help but thinking, "why have I never read this book before?!" It has so much insight on how to teach artists. Okay, some gems:

"When the artist is alive in a person, whatever kind of work that may be, he becomes an inventive, searching, daring, self-expressing creature".

I really wish I would have heard that quote in college when I was in painting school and thought that one was only an "artist" when painting. I had a serious love for batik and textiles that I pushed aside thinking that it wasn't "true" art. 

"Where those who are not artists are trying to close the book, he opens it, shows there are still more pages possible."

"The work of an art student is no light matter. Few have the courage or stamina to see it though."

I really think that all high school art students as well as their teachers need to be reading this book. Seriously, you guys. Robert Henri is amazing!

Okay, I have to know, because I could quote all day, what's been your take-away? Are you enjoying this read? I'd love to hear from y'all in the comments! 
Feelin' Catty Tuesday: Let's be honest, I'm catty every day of the week. I ain't braggin'. I come by it naturally. By the way, don't ask me what's happening in the photo. And to think, it was the best of the batch. sweater: made by me, DIY here; boots and belt: Anthro; dress: vintage; crinoline: Amazon; tights: Target
Wuz Up Wednesday: Aside from this here ensemble, I have no recollection of Wednesday. Is that bad? I can't even tell you what I had for dinner. My guess is popcorn. sweater: Free People, found at Buffalo Exchange; shirt and skirt: JCrew; Tights: Urban Outfitters
 Recording Studio Thursday: I remember this day! We had so much fun at the recording studio with the third graders (more here, in case you missed). The guys working the place were so great. One said, "Oh a dress of onomonopias!" and later one said, "Lichtenstein!" Either way, I was impressed. By the way, I don't think I ever shared a DIY post on this jacket with you! I bleach dot-dyed the top with a q-tip and added the appliqué the same way I did for the dress. Lichtenstein dress: DIY here
Fried-Day: So I have a good friend who is an incredible teacher (hi, Bethany!) and is super duper organized. She was telling me how she has her clothes picked out for the week. I do no such thing. I don't have an organized bone in my body (what would that look like?! Would I look like a blob?!). For zample, on morning I thought A. What will I wear? and then B. What am I teaching? I had 3 kindergarten classes learning here's what I came up with. sweater: Target; skirt: Plato's Closet; necklace: Paper Source

Oh, one last thing! This goofball blog that you are currently reading is up for an award! That's right, I've been nominated for Wild Card Blog of the Year. There are some amazing art education blogs nominated so if you'd take a moment to go and cast your vote (good news: you can vote for as many as you'd like), that'd be swell. 
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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

DIY: 14 Faves of 2014

Well, Happy New Year's Eve-eve to all y'all! One of my fave things to do during this time o' year is to look back on the past and reflect on some of my happiest memories. I've been doing this the past coupla years and I really enjoy it (you can visit 2012 and 2013 here if you so desire). I hope you don't find it nearly as torturous as those Facebook "This is my life in a coupla rando posts and pics that some pimply teen working at FB picked for me. Thanks for being apart of it." thingies that keep clogging up your newsfeed. If so, my sincerest-ish apologies. 

For humoring my self-indulgent reflectin', I've got a giveaway for y'all! One of my fave things about 2014 was that I started the Artsy Book Club. We started out with a BANG! reading One Drawing a Day and really having fun with it. The prob? Drawing each and every day is taxing, y'all. However, I did love the bond we created. My next book club read was a double header (Teach Like a Pirate and Printmaking Unleashed) which I think was a big ole mistake. I was overwhelmed trying to read them both. So this time around, I'm throwing a book out there that I've been meaning to read for ages and I think we'll all benefit from and Ima gonna give one of you a copy! So, what's the book, you ask?
A true classic, amirite? AND one that I've never read. Here's how you can enter to win:

1. Leave me a message in the comments about what was your fave memory from 2014. 

2. Don't forget to include your email address! I'll let you know by Sunday, January 4th.

We'll begin officially book clubbing on Monday, January 12th. There are a million inexpensive copies of the book in the used section on Amazon (that'd be where this giveaway copy came from!). I do hope you'll join the Artsy Book Readin fun!

And now, on to 14 Faves of 2014 (in no particular order)...
1. My Artist-Inspired Dresses. The craziness continues. I started this artist/artwork-themed dress thing last year after creating The Great Wave dress. My most recent one was this Lichtenstein number (I've got a couple on my sewing room table right now just waiting to be created). 
This Starry Night Dress was actually started at this time last year over winter break. The light up part is my ab fave. 
Woof, this entirely needle felted The Scream dress had me seriously questioning my life's choices. It took me foreverness. I don't wanna even know how many hours were poured into that dress (although I do know that about 3 seasons of Project Runway were watched whilst needling away). I took a lil hiatus from needle felting after that number. 
But once I learned that there was a Kandinsky exhibit coming to The Frist Center for Visual Arts, I was back at the felting biz-natch. You can see the dress on the left and the one on the right by clickin' the linky-loo, Cindy-Lou Who

 2. Feature in Nashville Arts Magazine. From the interview to the photo session to seeing it all in print, that was easily one of the coolest things of 2014 for me. You can view the entire interview here incase your eyes cannot read flea-sized font. 
 And you can read all about that photo session and interview here
 3. The Artsy Sew Along. Originally just called the Apron Sew Along until we finished the aprons and people kept joining the fun (I love Denise's Frida/El Dia de los Muertos apron, don't you?)! I've got a new sew along project in store for us so if you join here, you'll be able to stay informed. If you are still wanting to get your apron stitching on, go here. There's all the links to the videos and tutorials you'd ever want (well, not really. But it's a start). 
 3. Going to NAEA in San Diego. Twas an absolute blast! It was basically Art Teachers Gone Wild which is always the best kind of party. I'm most def going this March (and leading two sessions, whuuuh?! Y'all best come and hold my hand, ermkay?). I loved meeting some of my fave bloggers and awesome art teachers. From left to right, that's Phyl, Patty, Rina and the lovely Donna. If you click on their names, you will be blown away by their awesomeness. 
And of course, Nic Hahn of Mini-Matisse! Like, seriously the nicest gal everrr.
4. Leading my first professional development at Cheekwood Botanical Gardens. Y'all. I was so super nervous to be leading that workshop! I mean, I'll teach kiddos all day long but other art teachers?! Who am I to tell 'em what to do? My nerves were set at ease by that awesome group of art educators and it was such a fun experience that I can't wait to do it again. 
5. Speaking at Bowling Green State University. That was another spooky/thrilling experience that I absolutely loved! Although, I gotta tell ya, my fave part was meeting Laura Dean of Painted Paper. Her blog is insanely creative and always an inspiration. 
 6. Gallery of Gratitude. As art teachers, we hang artwork in the hall all the time to boost the kid's self esteem and to show off their hard work. However, it's not often that we create art work to booster the esteem of others and congratulate them on their hard work. But that's just what our Gallery of Gratitude did. And the impact it had on my coworkers was very touching. This was easily one of my fave art projects of 2014. 
7. 4th Grade Legacy Mural. This project was one that came to me two weeks before winter break. The idea: have my 4th grade kids create a legacy for the school and present it as a Christmas gift before winter break. Getting this completed caused multiple panic attacks but with the help of my buddies the custodians, the bookkeeper, my librarian buds and all my fab fourth graders, it was finished and revealed to our principals. 
 8. String Art Project. This project was both a student and blog reader favorite. If you've not given this a go, I really recommend you do. Each and every kid loved it and was successful. And now my 3rd graders are begging to create one as well. I've got an alternative in mind for them that I can't wait to start after break. 
9. Circle Loom Weaving with 2nd Grade. This one was another blog reader/kid fave. Do y'all weave in your art rooms? It's one of my favorite things. In fact, I'm declaring January Weaving Month by hosting a weaving lesson each week on this here blog. I'm also presenting all-things-weave-y at the AOE conference at the end of January! I'm so looking forward to that. Are y'all going? 

10. 2nd Place Art Education Blog of the Year. Speaking of the Art of Education, this was a super nice surprise this year (I know it says 2013 but it actually went down in 2014)! I was thrilled just to be nominated. Shoot, I'm just glad that there's five of you out there that read my ridiculousness! 
11. Tennessee Elementary Art Educator of the Year. Well, that was a super nice surprise! Especially the part where I'm surrounded by some outstanding art educating action like these lovely ladies. Guess who didn't get the "Professional Attire Required" memo (as if I have any clothing that falls into that category!). 
12. Hiking Mount Baldy. Like, wow, y'all. That was a tough hike the hubs and I did this summer. But outta all the hiking we've done, this one was one of my faves. The views were amazing. 
Like, right? Once we caught our breath the view was even more breath taking. 
13. Halloween Horror Nights at Hollywood's Universal Studios. The hubs and I have been going to HHN for years. It's like our fave thing in the world. Seriously, the hubs loves it so much, he starts planning our trip in May. I was able to get this frightening clip filmed while standing at the front of the entrance to the park. Just watching it still makes my hands sweat. And to think we pay money to get chased my these maniacs! 
14. A Ladies Trip to Charleston. Me, my moms and my moms-in-law traveled to Charleston this summer and completely did the town. I'd never been before and the whole place was such a fun and unique experience. Fave part: the dolphin sightings right after these photos were taken. So fun! 
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Saturday, July 26, 2014

What the Art Teacher Wore #107 and Back to Schoolin'

Vintage Monday: Some of my fave vintage duds rarely see the light of day so this week I made a point to bust 'em out. This dress was one of my first vintage purchases that I dyed hot pink a coupla years back to hide some stains. Now that I think about it, Tuesday's dress is a dye-job too! dress: vintage; belt: Pin Up Girl Clothing; sandals: gift from a friend
Hello, kids! I hope that this sunshiny week has treated you swimmingly. Mine entailed feeble attempts at working in my art room (I can only manage about 3 hours a day before I start to whine "but it's summerrrrrr, I'm not supposed to be at schoooooooll!") and weak pursuits of stitching up some Back-to-School duds (I keep starting one dress and then another and then another. I really need meds for my self-diagonsed ADHD because self-medicating with coffee and chocolate only lead to a worse case of "look, SQUIRREL!"-itis). On top of that, I've been reading up on our Artsy Book Club choices and dreaming up ideas for an Apron Sew-a-Long (deets below, y'all). And to think that this week was supposed to be the calm before the Back-to-Schoolin' storm, pshaw!

I still cannot believe I start back to school in a matter of days. In fact, I know it's not sunk in as the Back-to-School nightmares have yet to begin (anyone else have these? Over-crowded art class, rowdy kids, paint everywhere, ticked off classroom teacher waiting outside the door with her kids in tow, me screaming for some semblance of control...oh, what am I talking about, that's no nightmare, that's my daily life!). To top it off, hubs and I headed out of town on Friday to spend our last vacation in California. When we return, I'll be hittin' the teachin' ground running. It's gonna be an interesting Back-to-Schoolin', I can already tell.

With returning to school in mind, I thought I'd share with you some of my Back-to-School projects and purchases. This is the kinda stuff that really gets me excited about returning to see my lil artist friends. Whuh about you, non-teachers and teacher-buds? What is/was your fave part about returning to school? Aside from huffing that brand new pack of Sharpies, as that's just a given. Whatever it may be, I hope it helps make the transition from easy-summer-days to kid-filled-artsy-craze a good one. Until next time, y'all!
Y'all recall that SmART! Craft Supply place I mentioned a coupla blog posts back? Well, they have a crazy assortment of sewing patterns (most being from the late 70's an 80's which is not my fave fashion era) and I scored this gem. I usually begin my sewing projects with a quick and crappy sketch just to wrap my head around where I'm going. I've decided to use a different pattern for the skirt portion (I didn't love the maxi vs. mini options. In fact, I hate maxis in the art room because every time I squat down, I ALWAYS step on my hem, attempt to stand up, get caught on stepped-on-hem and fall over. It's quite classy to see in action, I gotta tell ya). Here's hoping those angel-wing-sleeve-thingies don't look too angel-wing-y. Though pretty sure I'll be fine as I've never been confused for anything close to angelic. I'll keep ya's posted.
True Detective Tuesday: Since hubs has been home this week, we've spent some time hiking, reading and catching up on shows we've heard so much about. We decided to give True Detective a go this week. Have y'all watched this show? It's good...but unsettling. I find that I'm totally absorbed when watching it but feeling pretty funky afterwards. How bout y'all? dress: vintage, dyed purple by moi; shoes: Crocs, thrifted
What does Back-to-School Shopping mean to you? For me, it means FABRIC! And it's a wee bit outta control, as you can see. By the way, I recently threw the idea out there on Facebook (you can follow me here if you wanna) of hosting an Apron-Sew-Along on this here blog and got a great response. If you aren't familiar with a sew-along, it's where a blogger presents and teaches a sewing project over the course of several weeks and those that are interested, well, sew along. In the end, all projects are presented in a blog post and shared with the interwebbin' world. If you are interested...please let me know in the comments or on my Facebook page. I plan to share the details sometime next week. 
In the meantime, I've go some sewing to do! I've currently got three dresses in varying stages of completion and I need to get my behind in gear. I'm really hoping to have that one on the right ready by the first day of school. It's the one I'm using the angel-wing-sleeve-thingie dress pattern on. Wish me luck.
Butt Ugly But I Like It Wednesday: Seriously. When I found this get up at the thrift store a while back, I was so stoked. The hubs, well, not so much. two-piece crop top and cropped pants: vintage; bakelite bangles: gifts; shoes: Crocs
Back-to-School Shopping also entails scouring the interwebs for vintage clothing that reflects the culture I plan to teach. I found this super amazing skirt from this super amazing etsy seller Sassy Señorita Vintage. Y'all, this here awesome seller is why I love shopping on etsy. Not only is her shop fab but the shipping was fast. And when I sent her an email telling her I was an art teacher she threw in an extra goodie and packed it all in the most colorful of tissue paper that you know I'll be reusing in the art room. Thank you, Sassy Señorita!
The amount of work that went into the skirt is amazing. I've been studying the embroidery and the appliqué technique...thinking of trying my hand at this happy and colorful process.

Thursday Goodness: I ran errands like a crazy person Thursday in preparation to head outta town.  Isn't it funny how crazy things are before vacay? And then, when you get home, you need a vacay from the vacay! Which I totally won't get as we return home at midnight on Wednesday and start back to school bright and early Thursday, yikes! We'll see what state I'm in come next week. dress, bangles, brooch: vintage; rope sandals: Nomadic State of Mind
What else does Back-to-School Shopping mean? Bargains, 'course. Fact: I do have a shopping problemo. Howevers: I counter that buy only shopping used or cheap. For zample, I found these bad boys at Michael's Craft Joint for half off of $8 with the letters being a coupla bucks each. Add that 25% off coupon from my phone and BAM! I've got some happiness for the art room. Now, what to do with em...I'll keep you posted. 
Flyin Out Friday: My apologies for not only the goofball pose but the grainy photo. One of these days I'll quit this outfit photo biznatch and put you all out of your misery, ha! sweater: vintage; bike dress: Anthropologie; necklaces: made by me, DIY here
Don't let the sign fool you, we're actually in Anaheim, California at Disneyland, the Happiest Place on Earth. Hubs and I spent Saturday night at both California Adventure and Disneyland with plans to head back this evening. I'll share that adventure with you in an upcoming post if I recover from this vacay, heading back to school and getting all those dresses stitched up!
Until then, y'all enjoy your summer days! May they be slllooooooow and super happy!
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