Wednesday, May 24, 2017

MOTHER'S DAY BLISS...

brunching with my children down in the Long Beach Marina,
then walking it off 
watching the boats sail thru the bay to Catalina and the ocean beyond.

On another Mother's Day note,
I planted this lavender rose up at the cabin last Mother's Day in honor of my own mother,
Rose Patricia.
It survived the winter's snow and rains,
and has been blooming since one week before Mother's Day and is still going strong.
My mother's favorite color in her later years,
lavender.  
When my mother turned 60,
 I was 20 years old working at Ann's Flowers in Buena Park, Ca.
For her birthday present,
 the owner of Ann's helped me find 60 lavender roses to give her.
I will never forget her delight and surprise.

I miss you every day mom,
and talk about your goodness and understanding to your grandbabies as well as my students.
Right Eunice? 
:)
Your grandson Zach has found his mate for life mommy,
and you would have loved her.
She reminds me of you.
Gentle with an inner strength, astute, nurturing, understanding, a lover of nature and the ocean,
a gardener, a thoughtful listener, thankful, 
a lovely, good person.
And most importantly,
she loves your boy with all her heart.
They are so good together,
and I cannot wait to meet the babies they will make.
I only hope I will be able to be as wonderful a grandmother as you were to my babies. 
Happy Mother's Day

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

SAILING AWAY - Part 1

PAPER MACHE' SHIPS
project inspired by Ann Woods
BEGINNING 3-D ART
newspaper, starch, cardboard, muslin, dowels, string, scrap fabric, wood embellishments,
watercolor & acrylic paints, paper scraps for collage


Another school year is almost over 
and our seniors will be all sailing off in all different directions.
But before they do let's take a look at their and others vessels.

Like nationally known Mixed Media Artist Ann Woods builds her ships,
this is a repurpose assignment with not a lot of expense.
Most of the money went into purchasing the wood accoutrements:
dowels, beads, tiny pots, etc. 
We begin with Coach Milan,
one of our Paraeducators,
and his Donald Trump ship called Fire Pits.
No one realized till he was almost done
 that he had collaged President Trump's face all round his boat.
I really appreciated the time he put into fraying the edges of his sails,
and also the thought he put into the form of his ship.
Fun piece Milan,
and so very current!


This next one is the work of 8th grader Selina Luo.
The stitching on her sails is so beautifully executed,
as is the craftsmanship on the entire ship.
She ties both the ship and sails together thru the analogous colors blue and purple.
I especially like how she solved her hanging requirement by plying string to itself 
and attaching it at either end of her boat.
There were so many requirements these kids had to work to 
with over a hundred points to be earned.


One of my top 3-D seniors,
Hannah built this spectacular creation for us all to enjoy and exclaim over.
Fabulous attention to detail in her dragon boat.
Check out how she built the wings,
with buttons and copper wire.
And of course the lions on the sails were the bomb!
I also really liked her color scheme with her complimentary reds and greens.
Bravo young woman!


And I couldn't do a post without showing off A.P. English teacher Donna Hall
and her swan ship.
To die for!
She's calling it the Sea Mist, 
and like Hannah above,
 she is giving this everything she has.
The lovely form from the head to the wings,
the frayed sails that bring such softness to her piece.
Those gorgeous buttons with the plied cotton rigging.

Cutting the heart shape out of fabric and backing it with netting before she stitches it down.
Her delicate choice of buttons on the sails.
It just all flows so beautifully together.
Thank you once again,
for having the courage Donna to join us,
and allowing us along on your journey..



One of my personal favorites was this pirate ship design by 8th grader Palmer Patel.
The cannons on the side, 
the multiple flags,
using a Sharpie and bravely drawing out his skull and crossbones.
The plied rigging connecting the sails,
and the actual ship design with the captain's cabin.
Totally cool Palmer.


And check out this beauty by senior Alexis Bilas-Imperial called Wanderlust.
Lovely analogous color choices with a bit of sparkle.
The wonderful curve at the front of the ship that we all loved so much,
and the time it took for all that fraying along the sails.

We end Part I with junior Rachel Kannampuzha.
Impeccably crafted,
this is a true sailing ship with it's bottom fin.
We all really delighted in the fact that she coiled her rigging on the side,
and attached the anchor she built out of wire to the other.
Also check out her main flag at the top.
Doesn't it look like it's blowing in the wind the way she has shaped it.
I wonder if she stuffed it?
I'll have to ask her.
I also really appreciate the gentle patches of white against white,
and that she pinked some of the patch edges to catch our eyes.
Now did you notice the tiny pieces of metal she attached to hold her sails to the rigging?
How dang cool is that?
Well thought out young woman.
Just love showing off your designs.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

HANGING WITH MY KIDS

This year to celebrate my birthday,
my children took me to our favorite place,
Poppy Street Beach in Corona Del Mar to check out the marine life and enjoy the weather.

Zach's girlfriend Nicole was able to shoot some great photos for us.
Loved this panoramic view of the entire beach.

I also love watching my two beach babies 
enjoying and playing with each other in the rocks and waves.

We saw lots of sea slugs and crabs walking around with shells for their homes.
The water was incredibly clear.
 
But as fabulous as it all was sometimes the Internet is just a bit stronger attraction.  
ha ha

Thanks you guys for a wonderful birthday.

Friday, May 19, 2017

A SNEAK PEEK

SILVER SOLDERED LANTERN
3-D ART - SPECIAL STUDIES
colored glass, copper tape, silver solder, soldering iron, clamps, glass cutter, cutting mat, flux

Senior Shreya Sheth, 
who has 2 Independent Study classes with me back to back (2 hours),
has taught herself to silver solder over copper tape.
Using this Stained Glass technique over cut pieces of glass,
she has created a fabulous lantern.

She cuts her glass pieces on top of a self healing green mat
 using a traditional glass cutter tool.
Above you see her playing with her design.

Next she wraps each piece with copper tape and using a wooden clothes pin
as a burnishing tool,
she smooths the tape down tight.

Next she uses clamps as a third hand to hold her piece as she solders from the bottom up.
Flux is applied first with a make-up sponge to all copper connections
before she solders.

And here we see her about to solder her sides together.

Stay tuned for the finished piece.
One of the eye catchers at Open House this year.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

ANOTHER LOVELY GIFT

One of my all time favorite students,
senior Howard Lin,
who I've known since he was a squirrely 7th grader,
brought me this gorgeous bouquet of roses as a thank you.
It brought tears to my eyes,
it was so unexpected.
Have I told you all lately how very much I love my job and my students???

Long after the roses wilted,
 their petals graced the students work tables,
then went into eco-dye bundles and handmade papers.

Thank you Howard,
you touch my heart everyday with your thoughtfulness, kindness, respect, and goodness.
xoxoxoxoxox

Monday, May 15, 2017

THE BEST PART OF MY JOB

Hi Mrs. Sposa, 
I was finishing up my fractured watercolor piece today, but I was having so much fun I decided to go out to my backyard to try water coloring a plant. When I was done I literally stared at my paper for a minute thinking, oh my god I can't believe I did this! I'm going to put it in a frame and give it to my mom tomorrow for Mother's day. I just wanted to say THANK YOU for being such a great teacher, because I've always thought that watercolor was just so impossible for me to do, and now I can actually pull off a flower! So exciting! I'll probably go out and buy some watercolor paper and brushes because this is just way too much fun! Hope you have a great Mother's Day tomorrow! See you soon. 

-Vaishalee  



Watercolor by junior Vaishalee Chaudhary
Beginning 2-d Art

Sunday, May 14, 2017

NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK

VALUE SCALES
7TH GRADE ART WHEEL - 3RD QUARTER - 2016-2017
graphite on paper

Oh my, oh my.
I got me some new younguns for 8 weeks
and they are crazy wonderful.
They take instruction and demonstrations and apply them so creatively as you will see.

We are starting with Gail Baltazar who blew me away with this sophisticated work above.
Most children this age do not know how to compose a balanced artwork
or know how to completely fill up a paper.
Not this young lady.
Every single assignment was brilliant as I was to find out.

Next up we have Bianca Pagal with this beautifully crafted work.
Something else young ones this age usually don't know to do is to draw to the edge of the paper
and let the composition go off.
This was something that Bianca innately knew to do.

Loanvy Dang showed us this very playful side of her by doing some fun Zentangling 
inside her butterfly.
And the implied line adds so much to this wonderful piece.

Another very adult piece was done by Tiffany Cheng.
Just beautiful!

And we end with Pearl Wang,
who came in with these incredible drawing skills.
It just baffles me that kids so young can draw like this.
Look at the way she uses her pencil so consistently,
those amazing diagonal strokes that create texture along the bamboo.
Then the soft way she applies the pencil along the leaves.
Pearl,
you ae so gifted
and you rocked this assignment!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

THE BLOBS ARE BACK

 WATERCOLOR BLOBS
7TH GRADE ART WHEEL - 2ND QUARTER - 2016-2017
watercolors on watercolor paper & pen & ink, colored pencils

Well,
this is my fond farewell to you,
my 2nd Quarter cuties.
So many of you have so much artsy fartsy in you,
 and I hope you will be back next year for more art classes.
And if not next year, 
when you have room in your 11th & 12th grade years.
Let's take a look at how you put all your learning into your final.

Loreinice Zilabbo  & Janice Ji both chose to work in a Primary Color Scheme.
What's really "spicy" (Eric  :) when you do that with watercolor and use this wet into wet technique is the 3 primaries mix and create secondaries, intermediates and brown.
The whole color wheel plus its neutral.
Loving these!

Super sweet Emma Bertel,
took a really cool approach to this design.
She was able to figure how how to interconnect all her creatures which impressed me greatly.

And Felica Hildago & Samantha Catacutan 
both chose to work to the Cool side of the color wheel for one really soft & atmospheric design,
and one really intense and striking design.

And then there is Siddhant Watwani who surprised not only himself but the rest of us as well.
He was able to focus for an entire hour and a half,
yes,
 working diligently and creatively on his final.
Who knew?

Amy Wang put tons of energy into her piece with several really awesome focal points,
and Anushka Panjwani really takes off as well using lines with lots of energy.
Again both girls working with the cool side of the wheel.

Thank you all for your effort,
but more importantly on a personal level,
thank you for coming in to check on me after my fall.
You support, hugs and love helped me heal faster so I could get back to work,
doing what I love to do,
teach art.
xoxoxoxoxoxoxxoxoxoxoxo

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

A GREAT BIG THANK YOU...

to all my crew who put up over a thousand pieces of original art for our annual
Open House Show and Sale.

OPEN HOUSE WALLS
INTERMEDIATE 2-D ART
juried art pieces for the show, ladders and t-pins

The hanging of the show begins about a month before it's date 
with my art assistant and 2012 Alumni Alyssa Olea.
She unrolls miles of black poster paper and covers all the pinable walls
in the largest classroom in the school,
Room 18 (previously Room 24 back in the day), 
As you can see in these wide angle shots below,
  Alyssa had a whole lot of walls to deal with.

Then 9 days before Open House I gather my Intermediate 2-D kids during class,
and talk them thru their 3rd Quarter Final,
hanging the wall panels.
We lottery off the best ones,
one to each of this year's six 2nd year students.
Seniors Malaya Sithichai, Ayesha Durrani, Jazzarie Lo, Kevin Mao, Eileen Lee, and junior Sam Tun.

In the meantime,
Alyssa has spread out all the 2-d juried art pieces we've been saving for this event 
along the bookshelves in the bookroom next door.
(Thank you Jenn for trusting us in there).
Each child is given an empty portfolio to fill with pieces 
they will be graded on that work well together (Visual Flow)
And they must pick not only pieces done in color but also drawings in black and white.
Also graded on is hanging pieces from all 9 of my classes.
So in other of words,
each class is well represented on every panel.
Design is critical for each panel.
They have a choice between taking the easy way out and hanging symmetrically,
or the difficult route,
asymmetry.
But in the end the wall must FEEL balanced.
They are also given empty boxes to fill with bas relief 3-D and ceramic pieces
that can be hung on a wall.
(the 3-d sculptures that can't be hung 
are spread out on all the tabletops on the night of Open House)
Each panel is hung from floor to ceiling,
with the pieces fairly close together so we can fit everything.
I would guess that each kid hung between 65 to 120 pieces on each of their walls.
There were lots of other walls that all had to be hung as well.
I always do the most awful one in the back far corner because of all the wires running down it.
Alyssa usually hangs over and under the chalkboard,
 as well as 
 the elongated rectangle across the refrigeration unit where we house clay and supplies.
We both worked on another difficult wall that is made from plywood 
where the door leads to the bookroom.
And Special Studies senior Shreya Sheth stepped up to the plate 
and hung the huge wall across the front of the room by the sinks,
as well as a hidden corner panel.
And this year we had way more pieces than usual 
because I had more students than usual,
so Alyssa and I hung the fronts of all the supply cabinets,
and around the white door panel that leads to Mr. Bender's science room.
It was crazy this year too because we even had ceramic bells hanging from the entire ceiling.
Completely surrounded by beauty!

Oh, oh, oh,
let me not forget to thank senior Deborah Harris,
my 7th period T.A. who hung up all the Before and After Drawings 
across the front of the refrigeration unit,
a big job.

And then the most Revolting Development happened.
I fell off the ladder and knocked my head real good the day before Open House.
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
So on the day of Open House Alyssa,
dear Alyssa,
spent the entire day at school in my stead,
teaching my classes because the sub couldn't,
directed the moving of all the Sculptures with Shreya after school,
picked everything up so the room looked perfect.
Then she and Shreya got all dolled up and were there to greet the parents, teachers and guests
beginning at 5:30 thru 8:30.

I was told to stay home and rest the knot on my head,
right?
NO, HOW COULD I STAY AT HOME THE MOST IMPORTANT NITE 
OF THE SCHOOL YEAR FOR ME???
I couldn't even drive or focus or do up my hair,
but my husband drove me to school so I could greet my guests,
thank my students,
and meet their supportive parents.

So thank you,
all of you,
 for making this one of the most eventful Open Houses ever!

What do they say Liz?
It takes a village.

Monday, May 8, 2017

LAST STOP...

on the Grand Adventure with son Zach & girlfriend Nicole.
After the Hike and Denny's for breakfast it was off to the
California Nursery Specialties Cactus Ranch in Reseda,
a complete Cacti & Succulent Nursery.
Right up my alley  :)
Can't wait to take Lil Guy Syd here to see the rusted Dinosaurs when he gets a little older,
and make a planter for his mommy.
This place was ginormous,
and honestly a bit overwhelming.
Ha ha
There were at least 5 of these giganuaon greenhouses that went on forever.
Like I mentioned in the previous post,
it was a good 95 degrees that day,
and a real sauna in those greenhouses.
But they had rows and rows of every cacti and succulent you could ever want,
in all different sizes.
And these were only the pix of the greenhouses,
there were a couple of acres of the same outside in the sun that I didn't even take pictures of.
Thank you Zach and Nicole for a memorable, 
fun, 
and calorie burning weekend adventure.