Tuesday, February 3, 2015

5th Fall Memories Silhouettes

Being at two buildings, for me, means teaching a lesson/project anywhere from 4-10 times! 4-5 times if I only do a project with one grade, possibly 10 times if I do the project with multiple grades. This allows for a lot of adjustments from the first time I try a project in the rotation to the last. Sometimes I make huge adjustments. In this case it was a shift in materials that allowed for more choice for students and allowing students to work to their strengths. I can't wait to see how projects develop throughout the years considering how this one did in 3 classes...This project was inspired by this post via Pinterest.

I can statements:
I can create a fall silhouette that reflects my experiences and my knowledge of nature.
I can write an artist statement

Day 1: Started the project off with exploring a few works of art with pretty famous names attached like Claude Monet, Thomas Cole, Van Gogh, O'Keeffe, Giuseppe Arcimboldo, Klimt, Kandinsky and a few others. They all had one thing in common, images or titles of Autumn in the work. Eventually the discussion led us to talking about color scheme and possible fall color schemes. When it was finally time to get their hands messy they got a piece of cardboard that came from a cereal box and red, orange, yellow, and brown paint. They basically painted it as if they were doing painted paper. Textures, blending, mixing, and experimentation were encouraged. If they didn't like the end result of one they had the opportunity to do a second.
O'Keefe's Autumn Leaves - Lake George N.Y.
Day 2: Started the second day off with looking at different silhouettes. First photographed silhouettes and then digital or drawn silhouettes. I asked them who/what the silhouettes were of how they knew they were right. Doing that really brought them to understanding of what a silhouette was as far as how to give minimal information but still enough that viewers know what they are looking at.


Finally they started planning out their project with this planning sheet and prompt:
"In each box sketch something different that makes you think of fall or autumn. Try to connect it with a memory for more meaningful art. Remember these will be silhouettes, you do not need inside details."
Day 3: Creating the silhouette is where the change happened. I started seeing the frustration in some students with cutting and getting the details they wanted so by the 3rd time (now at my other building) I decided to let them work to their strengths. They could use either paper OR paint to create their silhouette. The only issue was seeing painters get upset when things weren't going well and not being able to "correct it" or "fix it" due to the material choices they made.


Day 4: Many needed a second work time for more layers of paint or gluing pieces on but before they started I introduced to them writing an artist statement. Browsing around online I found this great definition and list of things to write about in two different places. Leave it to me not to remember and not being able to cite my sources....This was the first time I had students write an artist statement but I knew I would be doing more in the future so I wanted to put together a generic sheet that I could use with multiple grades on multiple projects. There is a good amount of lined room under the prompt for the rough draft....


Day 5: One more day was needed to type artist statements and for a few to get caught up!

McDill Elementary...






Jefferson Elementary...




P.S. Projects like this are how I protest winter!

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