Sunday, January 25, 2015

Giving It A Try

Trying my hand at growing a couple of Amaryllis and Paper White bulbs this winter.
So far, so good!
One of my favorite things about the Paper Whites is that I'm finding I can grow them in anything.
My ceramic vases and mugs I've made work as well as glass containers 
which allow you to watch the roots grow.
I bought the white & red Amaryllis at the same time,
 but the white one opened first and as it was fading, 
the red opened to fill it's place.
The red opened up with 4 large flowers all at one time.
Beautiful!

The Amaryllis came from Home Depot where I was able to buy them on sale, 
and the Paper Whites were purchased up on the mountain where we have our cabin.
I found out that the Paper Whites like a little piece of charcoal placed under them,
and they are so easy to grow.
Just place the bulbs on top of pea gravel,
fill with water to the bottom of the bulb line and watch them go!


Friday, January 23, 2015

It's For the Birds

WOVEN BIRDS NESTS
BEGINNING 3-D ART
wire, handspun yarns, ripped fabrics strips, jute, laces, recycled yarns & other misc. items

These imaginative nests were inspired by my last years students
who went above and beyond the minimum requirements.

This is the project I use to teach beginners how to weave.
But first we have to spin up our own hand spun/hand dyed yarns. 
We use them as inspiration for all our other color choices,
and include them in the woven nest.

This is also a huge recycle project.
It's our chance to use up all the odds and ends that I insist on saving;
bits of yarns, laces, ropes, plastic bags, beads & donated fabrics.

This year I asked the kids to not only weave a bird's nest but to then do something special around it.
Junior William Kim came thru in a big way.
He managed to find a very sweet blue bird, 
some eucalyptus stems, stuffing, silk leaves and a flower.
Then he arranged it all around his nest so perfectly along with his needle felted eggs.

In this next one,
very creative sophomore Shreya Sheth finds an old piece of wood that she splits,
then wood burns cool musical designs into it, 
and places it under her lovely nest.
Notice her sheet music stuffing?
Shreya's outside of the box critical thinking skills are going to take her far,
and I look forward to teaching her in many more of my art classes.

Junior Hazel Cruz,
a highly artistic young woman,
has built us this very soft & fluffy nest.
It's so realistic looking to me
 the way she has settled it onto a branch that she reconfigured and wood burned.
Notice how Hazel has woven with recycled plastic as well?

In this fun piece,
 senior Sunny Kim,
who was a joy to teach last year in Beginning 2-D,
 has used a lot of natural materials to cleverly incorporate into her work.
I love that she thought to wood burn on top of a piece of bark.
I asked her about the meaning behind her sign and she told me, 
"It's a bitter bird whose unlucky in love"
What a crack up!
She had me laughing out loud  :)

I'm so thrilled junior Liana Chie,
super star student from my 7th grade Art Wheel class 4 years ago,
has returned to me.
She, 
along with my other juniors this year who I adore,
have talked me into staying one more year 
so I can take them thru the Intermediate 3-D class.
I've put in my dues and can retire at any time now,
but teaching these young ones makes me so happy
 and I know they keep me young.
:) 
The hardest part for me,
 and has always been,
the getting up so early in the morning.
I accidentally oversleep my alarm at least 2-3 days each week
which makes me a crazy woman on the freeway  :(

And tremendously talented senior Anna Lee built this cutie.
She found lots of cool, old fabrics to weave with,
and I love the handle she made out of the foundation wire that we built the weft structures out of.
And notice those sweet strips dangling from the bottom?
Nice touch kiddo!
If you look closely you can see felted eggs alongside fabric eggs. 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Express Yourself!

SELF PORTRAIT COLLAGES
BEGINNING 2-D ART
paper collage & misc. embellishments

I use this assignment for the 1st Quarter Final so that my students can put together all the 
Elements and Principles of Art within a Self Portrait Subject Matter.
They have so many hoops (requirements) to jump thru as they build these pieces,
so that a lot of critical thinking is involved.
The finished pieces are truly remarkable as you will see for a beginning art student.

When Oceans Rise by junior Hapshiba Kwon, 
is a great example of how wonderful these pieces turn out.
Check out the person she created and baked from polymer clay,
the build up of tissue layers, 
the strategically places beads.
And can you find the bit of text she was required to insert?
And how it all follows together for a unified piece?
We will see a lot from Hapshiba this year.
She is a natural who loves to create. 

Junior Katherine Ku has made this powerful piece and statement with
  Love in the Middle of a Firefight.
She has chosen a monochromatic color scheme which really makes the work pop.
Again,
 check out the layers of paper collage which gives the piece a bas-relief effect 
(another requirement)

One of my personal favorites,
Stitched Back Up,
was done by senior Melissa Lanto.
She has included all my favorite fibery things.
But Melissa, 
I believe,
 is using them as a metaphor for a deeper more personal message.

Junior Kyla Balquin spent countless hours building Under the Surface.
She totally gets across her message that she's drowning under all her responsibilities,
but that there is hope.
I feel this is a great assignment for the kids to express themselves.

Scatterbrained by junior Hazel Cruz is so visually pleasing to me.
Love the use of the two color schemes side by side 
(warm and neutral),
and that she felt comfortable enough to draw in her margins with pen & ink,
which adds a bit of quirkiness.

Here we have 8th grader Olivia Krueger with The Breaking of  Facade.
For one so young she is sending out a strong visual message 
through a gorgeous color scheme,
 text and embellishments.

Another 8th grader in the class,
Sara Ryave,
in Descent into Insanity,
is really showing us the inner struggles of our youth today.
Again,
a powerful way for these sweet young ones to express themselves.

The message in Sideshow Attraction by Lily To really broke my heart.
All I can say is "Wow!"
And that she has created a lovely,
yet sad and painful,
  glimpse in to her world.

Senior Cyrus Salvani in Lost in Translation,
 has created so many beautiful layers for us to enjoy through his piece.
Love his neutral color scheme,
the masks that float around the focal point,
and then how he rubbed charcoal around his margin for a striking effect.
Talk about a work that pops and grabs you!

In Risking It All by 8th grader Rochelle Serrano,
we feel her descent into the abyss,
but then look at how she's fabricated the beautiful lifeline thru feathers and twig.
These kids are really brilliant at such a young with their brutal honesty.

One of my new favorites 
(yes I know, no favorites)
 junior Bernice Lim,
gives us a fun lighthearted and yet
 dark and charred glimpse into her inner struggle in 
Look Into Who I Am.
I adore that she built her distinctive red eyeglasses
 and incorporated them into her work.
So the second you view this piece you know it belongs to Bernice.

And lastly we have senior Karisma Dev.
I asked the students to give me bas-relief.
Well Karisma delivered in Before All Else.
Love how she has designed a book-like structure with pages.
And on the last page a pix of she and her little sis.
What a beautiful Mother's Day gift this will make framed out in a shadow box.
Hint...hint  :)

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Let's Light Them Up!

SLAB CANDLEHOLDERS W/ BEESWAX CANDLES
CERAMICS I
clay, metallic rubbing compounds, beeswax, raffia & misc. embellishments


Making these slab candlestick holders is a prelude to the more difficult slab boxes
 that are coming up in 3rd Quarter.
Also required in this assignment is the use of found objects embedded in the clay's surface
like feathers, fabrics, laces, leaves, yarns, cardboard shapes, etc. on 2 sides of the holder.
On the other 2 sides,
 the students are required to use their bisqued stamps and cylinder stamps they made in 1st Quarter.

And then because they take these home right before Xmas break, 
I buy them a beautiful variety of beeswax and teach them to make tapers.
This year they went crazy wonderful with the embellishments as you will see. 

This first gorgeous work was created by junior Eryn  Burnett.
I forgot to mention that my assistant Alyssa Olea loads them into our sawdust fire
for that charcoal flavor.
Then the kids rub them with metallic compounds to bring up the surface designs.

These next three had so much fabulous color rubbed into their surfaces.
From the left we have seniors Eduardo Jacinto & Elijah Ramos,
and junior Jaime Kim.
a close up

These next beauties belong to junior Klyne Madayag, senior Nikita Govind,
 and 8th grader Claire Chung.
a close up

And lastly we have these 3 lovelies by 8th grader Lindsey Chang, 
and juniors Juliene Porciuncula & Sitara Puliyanda.
one more close up

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Yarn Bombing a Branch

FREE FORM KNITTING
ADVANCED 3-D ART
handspun & dyed yarns, twigs, watercolored paper, wire, scrap fabric, tissue paper & misc. items

This was a new assignment that I tried out last school year with Karisma Dev
 when she was in 3rd year 3-D.  
It received so many raves that I wanted to bring it back again this year for senior Laarnie Barcelon, 
my sole Adv. 3-D student. 
The assignment really begin at the beginning of the school year when I gave Laarnie white roving to dye and spin up on the spinning wheel.
I encouraged her to make to spin as liberated as possible creating art yarns 
(We saw her earlier in the year on the blog spinning her brains out  :)
Then it was up to her to find something special to incorporate with the yarn for a mixed media effect.
She brought in a great looking branch that she cut into 3 pieces then reconfigured.
Working to the shapes in the branches she used a free form knitting technique to knit up her yarns
 so that she could stretch, 
weave and wrap them about the branches. 
She was also required to bring in additional media to compliment the work.
So when you look closely you see sheet music that's been watercolored,
some of it cut into butterflies.
I spy a stuffed felt bear head peeking out from a fabric nest,
coiled wire springs, and black rubber washers from the hardware store.
It's a perfect assignment for re-purposing. 

Friday, January 16, 2015

What's On The Line?

TYE-DYE EXTRA CREDIT
all classes

This is the first year that I've kept out the tye-dye dyes all year long.  
As they run out I've been buying new colors and filling the buckets back up again.
 I'm surprised and delighted when I walk out my classroom door 
because I never know what I'll run into.
What I do know is that it will be colorful 
and will make my heart happy that the kids are taking advantage of this fun opportunity. 

Senior Kaili Hamada took one of her pieces 
and made a zippered pouch for her good friend for Xmas.
I asked Kaili if she had ever put in a zipper before and she said no,
that she just kind of figured it out.
I tell you these children crack me up,
they are just amazing! 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Say Cheese!

BEGINNING 2-D ART 2014-2015
classroom

What a bunch of cuties!!!!
I'd forgotten I'd taken this pix of the entire beginning group working on their portfolios.
Just wanted you to see a pix of the group that made the beautiful pieces from yesterday's post.
This group of students range from 8th grade to our 2015 seniors.
Many of these kids I've had the pleasure of working with since their 7th grade Art Wheel course.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Diligence and Hard Work Pays Off

 TISSUE COLLAGE PORTFOLIOS
BEGINNING 2-D ART
tissue paper, other assorted papers, mod podge, cardboard, ribbon, bookbinding tape, clear tape

After studying several of the design elements and principles,
my beginners worked their butts off building these gorgeous portfolios to house their artwork in.
They worked within color schemes,
line,
shapes & textures,
value, balance, emphasis,
variety & unity.
They also had to jump thru several hoops in the construction phase.

This first one by senior Karisma Dev was really well planned out,
 and as a result she has designed and executed a strikingly brilliant design.
I love how she has incorporated her zentangling that she learned to do in the 7th Grade Art Wheel Class. 
She has also used a wide variety of interesting papers in her collage work. 
And of course her morphing design is so very cool!

Here we have junior Kyla Balquin who has created this lovely tropical landscape.
The kids use my tissue paper to work with but I also have them bring in special papers from home to give the work more variety.
Then the overlapping of the papers brings in value and texture. 

I adore this next one by junior Katherine Ku.
She's managed to incorporate both a land and cityscape within her design.
I also really like the neutrals she's brought into her color scheme,
and the pops of bright white thru sheet music and text.

Extremely talented senior Cyrus Salvani has designed this very subtle, 
yet powerful piece with the floating masks.

And below,
 8th grader Rochelle Serrano,
who is an up and coming talent to our art department,
  has given her design a kick with the fun checkered bookbinding tape.  

And a new student to me this year,
 junior Charity Lizardo,
is showing off her innate design abilities in this uplifting,
and playful work above.

I was hoping that junior Jane Juan was going to return.
I worked with her in the 7th grade art class and realized that she was a natural talent.
She has designed this lovely portfolio above using koi fish as her inspiration.

Another returning 8th grader,
Sara Ryave
(we saw many of her pieces last year on my blog)
has come up with this highly unique design.
If you look at it one way (bottom side) it looks like a bunch of very tall abstract humans.
But when you look at the top side you are seeing really spiky mountains.
Really clever Sara!

I'm really looking forward to working with many of these kids in the next couple of years, 
hoping to take some of them thru 4th year art.