Archive for the ‘School Project’ Category

Early animations

Students spent the first couple of weeks in February learning how to animate within Illustrator. They studied five of the animation principles: Squash/Stretch, Timing/Spacing, Slow-out/Slow-in, Follow Through/Overlapping Action, Anticipation.

Here are a few great examples from students, after just 3 days of animating in Illustrator.


Google Art Project perfect for art education

Google Art Project launched today. And it. is. AWESOME. Talk about making museums accessible to everyone. Extremely high-resolution images of original artworks! (That means you can see them much closer than if you visited the museum in person. Woah.) You can also “tour” the museum galleries, like you would in Google Maps street view. Currently, there’s only a handful of museums and galleries but I envision and hope more will join the project soon (like the Louvre?) I haven’t found artworks other than paintings, but I wouldn’t be surprised if in the future they included three-dimensions works of art as well. (Update: I have stumbled upon a sculpture work, hopefully I’ll stumble upon more and in the future provide all angles!)

screen shot of Google Art Project
Self Portrait in a Straw Hat, Paul Cezanne (MoMA, The Museum of Modern Art—New York, U.S.)

Since I’m going to be student teaching in the art classroom in a couple weeks, I’ve already thought how an art teacher can find different ways to use this in the classroom. Below are a few examples.

Helpful aids for master studies.
Since one can zoom in very close to these artworks, a student could focus on a small portion at a time — really understanding how Cezanne used blocks of color in his still-lifes, for instance. Looking at the whole image can be overwhelming, but breaking it into pieces makes it much more manageable.

Practice gallery walk-throughs.
Taking a group of students to a real-life gallery? Walk them through one of these galleries (or maybe the ACTUAL gallery you’re visiting is featured here—even better!) The students can practice appropriate behavior in an art gallery, have a better understanding of what to expect, as well as ask questions ahead of time (“How close can we get to the paintings?” “Do we have to walk a certain path around the gallery?”)

Better visual aids.
Technology use in the classroom is ever-increasing and the art classroom highly benefits from this. Being able to image search for paintings (so you don’t have to scan them from your art history book!) is a huge help. Now, rather than students seeing a poor-quality photograph (or photocopy of a photograph, etc.) art teachers can use Google Art Projects dynamically and students can really inspect the artwork. Studying lines in the elementary art classroom? Pull up Van Gogh’s Starry Night on your smart board, zoom in, and students can take turns finding and tracing his swirling lines!

Fascinating Anticipatory Sets.
Need their attention before introducing a stippling and pointillism unit? Zoom in on a painting by Georges Seurat and have the students guess what the painting is of, as you slowly zoom out.

You can even choose specific artworks and group them into your own “art collection”. You can name your collections the same as your unit plans for quick access, without having to remember which gallery is housing it and then having to spend valuable class time searching for it.

Love love love it.

Van Gogh master study

As an experiment with the stick in ink technique in my art methods class, we did a quick master study of Van Gogh’s cicadas. Mine is below.

I really enjoyed it.

The Real Speech

OK, well, the previous post wasn’t the speech I gave on Sunday. Neither was Miles’s post.

from the podium If you go here, you can watch a video of the ceremony (I think you need Windows Media Player to view). Fast forward to 49:14 (it might need to load for a second or two) and it’s about the time where I’m being introduced. My speech is like 4 minutes long, so don’t worry about wasting your time. Unless you absolutely could care less. In that case, why are you reading my blog in the first place? Everything went well, no big flub ups, and I even got a sweet picture out of the deal! Not many people would have a shot similar to this one.  I enjoy seeing my professors giving cheesy smiles (well, most of them anyway…) but wish I could have gotten the whole front row. I know at least one reader was cut out of the picture. Otherwise, Miles, Paula, and my dad taped it. It might be easier to wait to watch one of those (I’m sure Miles’s will end up online) for all you who don’t want to go through the work of clicking on the link.

Thanks to everyone who came: Miles, Mom, Dad, Marissa, Val, Paula, Grandma and Grandpa.  And everyone who said they were going to, but backed out: Tony.

The Graduation Speech

If you absolutely can’t wait, here is the speech for my graduation.  Enjoy!
Fellow graduates, esteemed faculty, loving family and friends, and those appreciated others who have come to see us off: I am immeasurably proud to be addressing the 489th graduating class of Dakota State University.
As I look out over this crowd, I am reminded of a joke.  It’s a fairly mediocre “Yo’ Mama” joke that goes, “Yo’ mama is so poor she couldn’t pay attention.”  And before you rush the stage to defend your mother’s honor, let me point out that there is at least one video camera recording evidence that can be used against you in a court of law.
The joke is a simple pun, not some grand, witty correlation between wealth and attention span, as some would imagine.  The word, “attention”, is defined by The Internet in at least six different ways, one of which is approximately, “Consideration or courtesy.”  It comes from the Middle English, which in turn came from the Latin from the past participle of the word attendere, which means to heed.
“But, Holli,” you say.  “You didn’t major in grammar, so why are you deliberately boring us with definitions?”  Touché, restless crowd.  “Attention” is special.  We talk about it like we can actually hold it, but you can’t purchase a bag of “attention” in the TC, no matter how much of your meal plan is left over.
We’ve all heard our parents or, worse, professors admonish us to “pay attention”.  An appropriate response is not “What am I?  Made of money?”  It gets a chuckle, like, five percent of the time.
However, if that same person is feeling a little less miserly, they might simply ask, “Can I have your attention?” like we have a plate full of leftovers at Christmas dinner.  Or they could possibly say, “Please, give me your attention,” after which they gaze at us, the givers, with a look of expectancy, as if we should get out our “attention purses” and give out “attention bucks”.
What makes attention so special?  Well, for one thing, I gave this speech to my kitchen last night, and I wasn’t nearly as nervous as I am now.  It’s not because this room is eleven hundred times the size of my kitchen, it’s because, suddenly, a lot of people are paying attention.  The “who” of “attention” matters greatly.  If Johnny Depp was helping me give this speech, I wouldn’t need that “Yo’ Mama” joke to get your attention.
“Attention” is the currency of “respect”, but it comes in positive and negative.
Picture a lion tamer with a whip and a chair, as the stereotype goes.  As he cracks the whip, the lions around him roar with hunger, eager to attack but fearful of his technique.  Now picture those same lions, that same tamer, but the lions are lounging in the sun, yawning, tails flicking carelessly.  A lion tamer is worthless if the lions don’t give a damn.
As graduates, we’ll be given special attention today: on this very stage moments from now, after the ceremony with our friends and family, and in every job interview for the rest of our lives.  Being a college graduate is a privilege that carries with it responsibility.  Whether we realize it or not, we will forever represent Dakota State University in our actions and our words from this day forward.  We are now a product of the attention that we have given and received, paid out and invested, and hopefully that will show through as we march off this campus to our new futures.
Insulting “yo’ mama” is not have been the most refined way of getting someone’s attention, but it usually works.  If you recall, however, I didn’t open with the “Yo’ Mama” joke.  If anyone can tell me what graduating class I said we were, then I’ll give you a prize.  Namely, my attention.
Thank you.