The Oscar night is filled with accolades for the years of work that goes into making a film. The combined efforts of editors, costume design, sound and light designers, actors, directors, effects etc all who collaborate and work together for a fantastic outcome. I watched the evening thrilled for the nominees and winners alike for they all have achieved a point in their career where others appreciate their efforts. We all strive to find success in our efforts and how blessed to find the accolades associated with your passion in the arts!
Pete Docter, the director of Inside Out gave a touching award winning speech. Art Educators around the country are cheering with you Pete! Thank you for seeing into the heart of our students who struggle to cope with the flood of different emotions that quickly change within them. Yes, they may not be able to change how they feel but they CAN change how they react. Students can create: films, music, art, dance, theater, or write! The power of the visual voice can help students to express those feelings inside that they may not have the words to say. Many artists find inspiration from memories, personal stories or our feelings and in that one Oscar moment we all can be affirmed that when we teach art we are supporting those who need to take what is inside and let it OUT!
Guest readers were district Administrators, James Madison President, City Councilman, School Board Member, Musician, Community Leaders, Realtor, DJs, and educators. Books were shared in Spanish, English and even through song.
Readers included: Daniel Kirwan (principal), Laura Feichtinger McGrath, Joanne Gabbin, President Alger, Gary Painter, Kathy Holter, Matt Hassman, Ron Ornstein, Jonathan Ruppel, Holly Bess Kincaid, Abe Shearer, JR Snow, Joe Glick, Brent Holsinger, Brandy Lindsey, Isabel Castillo, Molly Murphy, Margot Zahner, Sandy Parks, Ritchie Vaughan, Jessica Pyle
The arts and reading are vehicles to transport our students through their imagination to learn about cultures, people, far off lands and imagine worlds beyond our own. "Art is a place kids travel to, where they feel good about themselves. Keep their passport current."
Fred Babb, author and artist
To learn more about:
I invite you in March to read aloud to a child, support the arts by going to your local Youth Art Month Exhibits and continue to celebrate creativity!
"The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with objects it loves." - Carl Gustav Jung
As art educators we want to encourage students to try new materials and different ways to use common art mediums. When an artist lets go of the restraints of expectations we open up the opportunity for creativity. I am starting off the second semester with PLAY.
Students will be encouraged through a variety of TASKS to help loosen up the art making and hopefully shed fear for laughter and FUN in art making. During class students will be inspired by artists like Oliver Herring, part of the Art 21 PBS Episode "Play". If you are not familar with the idea of a TASK Party I invite you to check out Oliver Herring's- Task Party website. In 2006 I was fortunate enough to be a chosen participant in a Task party held at the Hirshhorn in Washington DC. The event made me feel like a kid again for a day!
In a season of testing and assessments our school environment fills the minds of our students with stress and fear. I want to give my students an opportunity within the day to find joy in learning, experimenting, and discovering their personal artistic voice. A series of artistic challenges will provide artistic skill building and provide small tasks to complete. The series of tasks will culminate in a mixed media creation inspired by how my students define and cherish the concept of PLAY.
As artists and art educators how do we continue to play, experiment and find joy in creating? What inspires you to create? Mid year for students and educators can pull us into the grey season of winter slumps. Instead of feeling dreary, I challenge you to take a moment in the midst of the great Jonas snow storm of 2016 to work on finding your own personal joy in creating... now GO, PLAY!
The idea of time travel and getting the chance to meet artists throughout history piques my imagination.
Imagination makes us aware of limitless possibilities. How many of us haven't pondered the concept of infinity or imagined the possibility of time travel? In one of her poems, Emily Bronte likens imagination to a constant companion, but I prefer to think of it as a built-in entertainment system.
One of my favorite clips from the show Doctor Who was when the time lord-Doctor Who character brings Vincent Van Gogh into the future to see how his art work has impacted others. Van Gogh painted over 9,000 paintings but only sold one in his life time. He never truly knew the inspiration he would have on others or how loved his work would become by the art world.
I love to share a variety of artists with my student to allow them to explore how others have created art. Each student can explore and choose from a variety of time periods, styles, cultures, mediums and find what might inspired the next great master piece. My classroom has access to a variety of tech resources and my students can be guided to explore a variety of online websites. I created a ThingLink image that has embedded links to a variety of my favorite online resources for art history time travel and exploration.
Websites are linked to the image below. Hover your mouse over the image and you can visit a few of my favorite web resources to help time travel through the world of art.
What are your favorite web resources are for sharing art history and artists with your students?
What artists, cultures or time period would you travel back in time to visit? What would you want to learn or experience? I would love to hear your time travel dreams!
Until next time... stay smART!
Students were also inspired by a variety of clips from the Art 21 episode, Memory.
My students and I would love to hear your thoughts on their creations, below are a few of the heartfelt memories bravely shared by the Falcon Artists of Skyline Middle School.
We would love to know what inspires your creative expression and fuels your visual voice?
Every year brings opportunities to learn, be creative and experience all that each day may bring. 2015 brought many new experiences, grants, presentations, travel, art shows and opportunities.
Here are a few highlights from the last year for Falcon Artists & their ArtLadyHBK:
The year ahead gives us all an opportunity to dream, improve and grow. May you all find new experiences that will inspire a creative filled future!
During the Fulbright-Hays Seminar my first full day in China granted us the opportunity to visit and check off two locations on my bucket list of World Historical and Cultural Sites to visit. The morning hours took us to visit Tian’anmen Square and the Forbidden City. Tian’anmen Square is a large city square in the center of Beijing, named after the Tian’anmen Gate (Gate of Heavenly Peace) located to its north, separating it from the Forbidden City. Tian’anmen Square is the third largest city square in the world (440,000 square meters). It has great cultural significance as it was the site of many important events in modern Chinese history. The Forbidden City was the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty. For almost 500 years, it served as the home of emperors and their households, as well as the ceremonial and political center of Chinese government. Built from 1406 to 1420, the complex consists of 980 buildings and covers 720,000 square meters. The palace complex exemplifies traditional Chinese palace architecture, and has influenced cultural and architectural development in East Asia and elsewhere. The Forbidden City was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987, and is listed by UNESCO as the largest collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world.
After an amazing meal for lunch we drove quite a distance outside of the city to see a portion of the Great Wall. The Great Wall (Mutianyu) This historical site stretches across China’s historical northern borders of China. Its original purpose was to protect the Chinese empire from invaders; it is now a tourist site. The fortifications are made of brick, stone, wood, and other materials. Along the wall, there are watch towers, troop barracks, and garrison stations. The wall extends from Shanhaiguan in the east to Jiayuguan in the west. The weather was perfect and the wall was empty of many tourists. I spent much of our time on the wall looking out to the mountains surrounding us and seeing the similarities to the Appalachian Mountains in Virginia. To imagine that we were standing on a man made structure visible from space definitely forces one to have a new sense of our place in this world.
The Tongling dragon said to be "The First Dragon" that combines nature and man. The religion based concept combines man's place in nature and the universe in an agricultural society. The Lotus Magic creature is powerful and has the ability to fly, swim and walk.
The image of the dragon is combined elements from different parts of animals:
The Emperor used the symbol of the dragon to show his imperial power and strength. The Chinese referred to themselves as being "Descendants of the Dragon" and a symbol of ethnic identity. The dragon is a protector and outstanding people are compared to a dragon. Many Chinese proverbs refer to the dragon. A popular idiom says: "Hoping one's son will become a dragon" or "hoping one's son will become powerful and successful."
A news story from Beijing announced this summer the discovery of a winged dragon like dinosaur. Perhaps, some day we will find the origins of the Dragon Culture, until then I will continue my fascination along side my students as we explore the Dragon Culture. My students will be exploring their own visual representation and meaning to be discovered when we harness the power of the dragon.
Our final moments in our Pre-Departure orientation included a wonderful dinner at a local Chinese restaurant and smiles surrounded us as we shared the excitement for the adventures to come.
On July 3, the Fulbright-Hays Seminar group left San Francisco for our fist stop in Beijing, China.
Let the adventures begin...
Our per-departure orientation has been filled with an enormous amount of information in a few short days.Sessions on Chinese Language, Chinese History by Stanford Professor Dr. Sommer, The Economics of the Chines Middle Class by Mr. Michael McCune, discussions about Modern Chines Society by Dr. Matthew Kohrman among others. Each day is a continuous stream of information and I am sure the coming month will be filled with unique observations, discussions and experiences. The time has come to pack up and journey to China!
Here we go...