Showing posts with label mosaic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mosaic. Show all posts

Monday, May 15, 2017

In the Art Room: A Legacy Mosaic Mural

So one day before the art show, we managed to pull together and pull off one of our biggest collaboratives to date: our Legacy Mosaic Mural!
This big honkin' mama-jama was created by my first thru third grade students. I knew that my kindergarten and fourths would need two weeks for their clay projects...and that my other kiddos would only need one. But when we work with clay, we ALL work with clay so I knew I'd need a project for that group which would carry us thru the second week. And that's when I got the idea for this big ole project. Here's the video I created months ago for the kids. Feel free to use in your art teacherin' world!
I'm a big fan of the artist and illustrator Galia Bernstein and this project was inspired both by her and by the book Who is the Beast? by Keith Baker. 
I know you can totally see the influence, can't you? I've always loved this book. When I came to my school so many years ago, I loved that a tiger was the mascot. It meant I could share this book even more with the kids!
So, who did we do it? Lemme tell ya.
First grade made the flowers, second grade made the butterflies and third grade made the birds. Everyone who finished their small piece then created a leaf or two. Before each piece was placed in the kiln, I placed the alphabet noodles of the kid's initials into the clay. These noodles burned off in the kiln and left behind the impression of the initials. 
Once each piece was out of the kiln, I created a diluted black glaze. Then I dunked just the surface of each piece in the glaze and then gave them a quick wipe on a damp sponge. This part was time-consuming (the entire thing was, honestly). But I just sat one day after school and dunked, swiped, dunked swiped until they were complete. 
These pieces were then returned to the students where they were tasked with glazing just the raised surface. I did limit the palette so that it wouldn't be too much of a sea of color. Flowers were yellow, pink and red, birds were blues, butterflies were purple, orange and yellow. Leaves were a variety of green. 
 After these were fired the second time, the workload was on me. I had acquired this huge frame last year and I'd been dreaming of a mosaic project since. I measured the inside of the frame which is 3' X 4'. I went to the local hardware store where they cut me a piece to size. I also picked up a jumbo bottle of Gorilla Glue and high gloss paint. My P.E. teacher buddy painted the board for me. From there my custodian friend glued and drilled the board into the frame.  
 I created the tiger. This literally took me 45 minutes to draw out, cut and texture-ize. With the art show looming, I was short on time which meant I was in hustle mode. That dried a matter of days. This past Sunday, I came in, laid out and glued each piece, glazed and fired the tiger. 
 In other news, does anyone know how to get Gorilla Glue off of skin? I've had it on my hands FOR DAYS now!
The tiger came out of the kiln this morning and was glued into place. This massive masterpiece will not be grouted. Before hanging it, it weighed in at 70 lbs. Grout would have only made it heavier.
 There were small empty spaces that were driving me nuts. I remembered I had a stash of decorative marbles and glued them in place. I LOVE them as they add a bit of sparkle to the piece. 
Stroke and Coat by Mayco is the best, y'all!
 This afternoon, my custodian friends worked tirelessly to get this beast up on the wall. It's drilled into the wall as well as supported by both a hanger and a beam underneath. 
 And the pieces are rock solid with that glue.
With the art show tomorrow, I'm so excited that we were able to pull this one off! It is my favorite collaborative to date!
 We do a lot of collaboratives and legacy projects. You can find out more about our chalked ceiling tiles, our You Be You mural and our JES selfies too! 
Because we do so many collaboratives, my students rarely are upset if they don't get to "take it home". I emphasize that this is their beautiful mark they are leaving behind...and for real, look how beautiful it is! I'm so happy with my sweet artists and this beast of a creation. Love to hear of any mosaics y'all have done like this! 
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Monday, April 30, 2012

Weekend Adventure: Back and Forth

I love this turtle mosaic by the Tennessee artist Sherri Warner Hunter. This guy was featured with several large mosaic fish and a lizard bench at a rest stop on the way to Chattanooga.
This weekend, hubs and I took a road trip to Chattanooga, Tennessee. Now, if ya'll aren't from around these parts, Chattanooga is a sweet town most famous for it's Lookout Mountain. To access the mountain, you can take what's called the Incline Railway which is a sort of train car that halls you at a near 75 degree angle to the top. It is not for the faint of heart.
It's about a two hour drive to Chat from Nashville. On my lap was my latest embroidery project. I'm working from a vintage dictionary with the best illustrations. I can't wait to share with you the finished product...but it might be a while.
Having done the Incline before, we passed on it. Besides we had other things on our agenda. Me, I was all about the vintage, antique and thrift shops. Hubs? Well, if you must know, it was the donut shop. Seriously. We drove two hours for donuts.
Not just any donuts, mind you, Julie Darling Donuts. They were pretty fab. We sampled the red velvet, blueberry and the glazed. None of them were your traditional donut: the glazed was amazing with a bread like texture; the blueberry was crispy on the outside like it had been deep fried and the red velvet had an incredible cream cheese frosting. They also had a bacon donut and an Oreo covered number that looked pretty interesting.
Chattanooga is a pretty arsty town with sculptures and paintings along their river front. I took piano lessons for years, but those of you that know me, know the real piano story. Those of you that don't know this infamous tale, let's just say it involves an Amish piano-tuning dude, my mother and something you'd never thought you'd find inside a piano.
After devouring our donuts, we walked along the riverfront venturing into shops. I managed to do a little damage at one antique store before we hit Lupi's Pizza.
One of my finds: I picked up this sweet little bird tray at The Knitting Mill Antiques. I loved it's unique diamond shape. Perfect for holding my wool snippets and my hook. The little snippets can be felted and made into things like this sweet pin cushion.
Our intent was to stay over in Chat...but to be honest, we felt like we'd done what we came to do: eat deliciously naughty food and buy other people's junk. To Do, Ta Done.
Getting home early allowed me to finish another square in my rug hooking! The flower took a lot longer than the geometric design but I'm really excited with the result.
The variegated yellow wool and the maroon wool that are outlining the flower are both from recycled clothing. I cannot wait to start on my next square. But I have entirely too many other things on my Shoulda-Gotten-Done-Five-Days-Ago list to even think about that.
Okay, the real reason we drove all the way to Chattanooga and back again? This sweet face.
Not only that, but someone has staked her claim in my wool storage! And, lemme tell you, if you even attempt to pull out a strand of wool on her watch, she'll shred you to bits with those claws. So, until she moves on, looks like I'll working on that embroidery!
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