Wednesday, April 27, 2011

AP Project - Cyanotype Mixed Media

For my AP students, I decided to have them make cyanotypes and then work back into them using whatever material they chose to.  As I was explaining the project, I noticed that some of them seemed confused so before the next class, I made a few examples using cyanotypes I made last spring and a different media that I liked.
Dr. Martins Liquid Watercolor diluted with water and applied with a spray bottle.

Pen and Ink

Colored Pencil

Acrylic and Pen & Ink

Stained the prints with coffee.  (I'm thinking of going back into these with pen & ink but they were still wet when I was at school so that didn't happen yet.)

I'm happy with all of them but the coffee and pen & ink ones are my favorites.  It was also nice to see the students really "get" the project when I showed them all of these.  I could see the wheels turning in their heads and a few of them instantly decided what they wanted to do.  I'm excited to see what they end up making.  They are all extremely talented and I know they'll make good work.

Mountain Goats Lyric Interpretation

For the Drawing II class, I am having them do visual interpretation of song lyrics that I chose for them.  I decided to pick lyrics from my favorite band, The Mountain Goats.  When selecting lyrics, I tried to make sure none of them would be "too easy" for students to interpret them.  The class is a sort-of a precursor to AP Art where they need to be independent and come up with interesting ideas on their own.  I think that most of the lyrics that I chose leave a lot of room for the students to apply their own meaning to them. 
Here's the handout I gave them when I introduced the project:

Finished It!

So, I finally finished the heart that I've been working on.  (I actually finished it a while ago, but it's been hanging in the classroom I'm teaching in.)  I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.  The paint pen I used liked to bleed a lot but once got the hang of it, it was no sweat.
"Untitled" (Math), 8.5x11 - found paper, acrylics, ink, and paint pen

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Whoops!  It's been a while. I was super busy student-teaching in Avon at their Middle/High Schools but this week I started at Webster-Thomas High School.  It's a big shift in a lot of ways but I love it there.  My cooperating teacher is awesome and full of good insight.  He also is a huge proponent of the teacher working in the classroom with their students; especially during work periods when the students don't need much input.  Today, during the AP class, was one of those days.  They were just working hard so I decided to get to work on the heart piece that I started back in  January.  I had brought in some of the materials to use but I'm also free to use anything in the room (which is amazing.)  It's an amazing feeling to be working alongside other artists again (even if they are in high-school, they're extremely talented) and I think that it brings an awesome energy to a classroom.  I'm excited to get a lot more work done in the room over the coming weeks!

8.5x11" in my sketchbook.  Found paper, paste, acrylic, ink

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Work Space

I figured that I'd show my desk in my apartment where I do nearly all of my work.  Since I have a studio apartment, my desk serves a multitude of roles.  I use it as a place to do homework, to work on art, and as a dinner table when I'm actually eating at home.  

Behind my laptop is the personal work that I've been working on for the last week.  It's slow going since I'm loaded up with schoolwork but it's usually pretty cathartic to come home late at night and work on it.  At this point, I'm working on the early stages of making stencils from the laserjet print.  To the right of that, is a newer typewriter that my friend is letting me use until I can find the perfect one.  I'm looking around for a manual one; this one is electric but is missing a power cord so for now, it's using 4 "D" batteries.  

Happy Saturday :)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Completed Door

Here is the final version of the door that I was working on.  Overall, I am very happy with the piece.  My plan through all of it was to learn how to use plaster bandages and I definitely succeeded in that.  Beyond that, it was just a ton of fun to make something with my hands again.  Because of the program that I am in, most of my time is spent either on the computer or pouring over books and making something that required the use of my entire body felt wonderful.  The photo was projected and was accompanied by the song A Plague of Frost (In the Guise of Diamonds) by a band called Aarktica.  

I'm still figuring out how to embed audio files on here but if you Google the title, there's a few different sites that will let you listen to it.  It's a very ethereal track that everyone in critique thought went well with what I was trying to convey.  It also has a slightly personal connection because the main member of the project, John DeRosa suffers from extreme hearing loss in his right ear and I suffer from hearing loss in my left.  I've always wondered if I hear what he does or something at least closer than what most people with "normal" hearing are experience when listening to his music.

There are some final touches I want to do on the sculpture and eventually, I'm going to photograph it with film.  Because of time constraints, I had to use my Nikon D200 but I still think it came out pretty well.

A Little More

Here are two more photos of what I've been playing around with.  The hearts are going to be used to make a stencil; I'm still not sure which I like more yet, I'll probably just make one for both and after some tests decide.  Let me just say, I love having access to a copy of Gray's Anatomy, a hi-res scanner, and an 11x17" laser-jet printer.

I am really excited to work on this even though I am swamped with school-work.  It's funny how I get inspired to start something completely new when I don't actually have any real free-time to work on it.  I may just save it to work on in class when I'm student-teaching with an AP art class.