Saturday, November 29, 2014

Senior Anna Lee is Hooked

wool, angora goat, angora rabbit, and cotton rovings

Yeap, I've turned another student onto the joy of spinning.
There is something magical about this fiber art.
Because it's a global skill,
once the kids go thru the difficult process of learning it,
it becomes a very relaxing pastime.
And they can't get enough of it.
So even though the unit is over, 
many of my students continue to spin for their own enjoyment,
 like Anna here.
Anna carding up her fibers to spin.

Andean plying up her singles into a 2-ply.

And her finished skein.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Fly High....

graphite, ink, colored pencil and watercolor

What I truly love about my job is that I get to share an art technique with my students then get to watch them fly with it. 
Here is the same assignment but done 3 different ways:
Make 3 boxes in 2-pt.
2 of them need to be stacked or touching each other in some way.
Bring in some shading using one light source.
Use good design, craftsmanship and all your effort.
Put some kind of framing device around it.
The rest, 
the colored pencil,
and the pen & ink are becoming their signature styles.

Senior Nathan Chong

Senior Michael Cantu

Senior Jovani Garcia

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy 26th to My Beautiful Son

We recently celebrated my son Zach's 26th birthday with both our families at my son's new place in the Valley, 
and then onto his girlfriend's parents who hosted a dinner in his honor.

You are surrounded by love my son because you bring so much joy into all our lives.

An excerpt from one of my favorite baby books I used to read to you:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my baby you'll be.

I can't read that book to this day without a tissue.
I love you Zach,
know that Aunt Elena and Nana are with you always and watching over you

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Spotlight on Elias Rodriguez

graphite, ink and colored pencil on bristol board

Having a week off during our Thanksgiving Break has given me a chance to get a bit caught up on my posting.
So I want to take this opportunity to introduce you to junior Elias Rodriguez, 
one of my top art students this year.
We saw many of his pieces last year from my Beginning 2-D art class, 
and I will continue to show more of his work this year.
Elias has been with me since the 7th grade in the Art Wheel eight week class.
He has known since even before then that he has wanted to be an artist, 
and he has worked diligently to fill up several sketchbooks  to pursue that dream. 
He came back to me last year when he was able to fit me into his schedule, 
and he works very hard to make sure each of his pieces are completely original.

A great example of that is in this piece above.
The assignment was actually only an exercise in how to build a 2 point simple city.
But Elias,
 being Elias,
 wanted to make sure he put his special twist into it, 
to make it stand out from the others.
He was only required to work in pencil,
but I love that he chose to also bring in ink and colored pencil.
One of his signature styles is to bring roses into almost every piece he does.
I'm sure it has special symbolic significance to him.
Perhaps one day I will let him post on himself and we will find out.
Are you up for it Elias???

Monday, November 24, 2014

A Look at the Work of U.K. Artist Alice Fox

I have been very negligent on keeping up with my 
Featured Artists of the Month Page on my blog.
So I'm hoping to get back to it.
I'd like to start with International Fiber Artist

I found Alice Fox thru other fiber artist's blogs that I visit.
I really like her work with water and rust, 
stitchery and eco-dye,
so I wanted to share her and her work with my fiber arts students here at Whitney.
For more on Alice please visit Featured Artists of the Month on my HOME page.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

A Few Surprises

A Peek at Josh Berger's Succulent Garden
in November
outside the Art Room
 at Whitney High School
Who knew this funny little succulent would produce such a magnificent flowers?
It looks like tiny toes,
 but man oh man, how it loves it's new home. 

And the daffodils are confused.
Because we've had such a warm October and November they think it's springtime,
 and are paying us a visit.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Another Great Extra Credit Op!


click on extra credit ops. for more details

Friday, November 21, 2014

Meet My New Beginning 2-D Art Students

tempera on thick drawing paper w/ pen & ink

My beginners,
 I apologize that it's taken me so long to showcase your class.
I'm finding that you are a talented and  sweet bunch of kids,
 and I'm really enjoying getting to know and work with you.

This Color Theory assignment was done in 1st Quarter and really showed off the skill levels of the kids coming into the class.  
Several of these young ones were with me in their 7th grade year in the art wheel class and I've been waiting patiently for their return.
Most of them are juniors and seniors now and I'm really pleased with the creative pieces they are turning in.

This first beauty was done by Hapshiba Kwon.
I'm thrilled she came back to me 
because she was one of the most talented artists in her 7th grade class.

Another young woman who I've been bugging to come back is junior Katherine Ku.
She, like Hapshiba,
 was also a stellar student in the 7th grade.
Her guitar design is so well thought out, 
 and was one of the best in the class.

Note that all these works you are seeing are incorporating color wheels, 
monochromatic and value scales,
 the 3 main complimentary pairs and their neutrals,
 and 3 colors that are analogous to each other.

Junior Bernice Lin, 
another one of my favs from her 7th grade art wheel class,
 did this lovely floral sun motif
over top her color wheel and value scale.

And then super star senior Karisma Dev, 
whose crazy wonderful work I've been posting for the past 6 years in my 3-D classes,
is finally taking her first 2-d class from me.
Because she is used to thinking dimensionally,
she came up with layering her designs on top of themselves.
The boats are floating on top of the water, 
and the buildings have been made separately from the mountains.
It's had to see these layers in this format,
 but in person it's a really cool new idea!

And lastly we have junior Risha Bhakta, 
a new student to me,
 who is coming in with strong design skills.

Can't wait to show off more of their work, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Prestigious Blue Ribbon School Award

Congratulations to us!
Whitney High School has won it's 5th Blue Ribbon School Status.
Our Superintendent Dr. Mary Su,
 our Principal Dr. Rhonda Bus, 
and our Student Council/Drama Teacher Jodi Improta all flew to Washington D.C. to be presented with this amazing award.
We have set a record, 
we are the only school in the nation to get the award 5 times,
 and this year the only High School in the Nation this year to receive the award.
Wow, we must be doing something really right  :) 
Congrats to All!!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Let's See What My Drawing/Painting Kids Are Up Too

graphite, and pen & ink

It's been too long since I've featured my 2-d students.
Sorry you guys.
These pieces are from 1st Quarter done during our Perspective Unit.

Usually we only draw them in pencil but I love that senior Nathan Chong also brought in the perfect amount of pen & ink.

Senior Michael Cantu chose a religious subject with some great cast shadows,
And I really like how he didn't connect the tops of the towers so that they seem like they are floating heavenward. 
Junior Jonathan Hsu really challenged himself with this curved food bar.
I was really impressed with the amount of time and detail he brought in.
More pieces by this group of 5 young men will be coming soon,
so stay tuned.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Fall at the Cabin

Waiting on the rain and snow, 
please hurry!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Eco Bundling & Printing

plant windfall, foodstuffs, silk, cotton, linen

Probably one of the funnest assignments of the year, 
eco-bundling and printing were enjoyed by all.

We start with a scavenger hunt around the entire perimeter of the school for windfall from flowers, bushes and trees.
Then another hunt at home for additional goodies, 
like spices and foods that might contain nature dye properties.
Junior William Kim and Antoniette Jabat brought bagfuls of exciting possibilities.
William even went to Starbucks for their used coffee grounds.

Some students chose to first pound the goodies into their silk foundations before they even started to bundle like sophomore Amy Wang.

Below, student teacher observer, Jessica K ,from Cal State U. Long Beach even joined in the fun.
Below is how Jessica stacked her finds
 on top of her fabrics.
Then the bundling began. 
The kids had many choices of fabric scraps to work with.
pieces of antique clothing, 
various cottons and linen tablecloths,
There were also 4 different cotton embroidery threads,
all of this thrifted from garage sales I go to each weekend.

Here are the bundles after the big steam.
This year they could have chosen a clear water bath, 
an ornamental plum, 
a blueberry, 
or a eucalyptus bath.
Believe me, it was a tough choice.
Even for me  LOL

We put them out on display for Back to School Nite.
Wish the photo had turned out better.
They were so lovely blowing in the breeze as the sun was setting.

So here are the opened bundles.

Senior Sunny Kim made two different bundles.
One went into the clear water bath, the other into blueberry.

Junior Hazel Cruz chose only a clear water bath,
 but because of incorporating bobbie pins and the spice turmeric,
she got some great results.

Senior Adora Islam went into the ornamental plum bath,
 and got many cool marks from adding rusty nails.

Junior Joann Chung made 3 separate bundles.
One into clear, plum and blueberry.

Liana Chie,
 a junior,
 made two different bundles
 putting both into ornamental plum.

And here is junior William Kim,
who we saw at the top of this post.
He made two bundles
 putting one into clear and the other into blueberry.
He used a lot of turmeric and coffee grounds in his bundles.

And this very soft, gentle bundle was done by junior Amber Wu,
who put hers into plum.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Our First Rain and Sleep Over

It was a momentous weekend over the 31st as it rained and poured at the cabin.
We finally got a good ground soaking.
The trees and plants are soooo happy!
And it's raining leaves and pine needles as well.
Fall has finally arrived  :)

And it was also the first time to test out the sleeping loft and air mattress we installed inside the new barn.
My son Zach, and his girlfriend Nicole joined us for a sleep over that also involved a bit of day labor on the new pathway I'm building from the street directly to the barn.
We even had time to make 2 pumpkin pies.
A really yummy and wet weekend.

See ya soon!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Going Out with a BANG!

tissue collage, carved rubber stamps, wire and found objects

I'm really missing my 1st quarter 7th graders.  
Even though they were a handful, they were a sweet bunch.  
And LOUD, really, really LOUD.   
On the left is Nhi Nghiem and the blue one belongs to Janice Chu

These striking collaged boxes with their wire wrapped pendants and stamped tissue paper were some of the last projects they did with me.

I want to apologize for not keeping up with my blogging.
I just started off the beginning of the 2nd quarter with the kids and I've been so busy.
Not enough hours in the day to spend blogging.  :)

Cayla Buculea,
 above, was one of my top 7th graders 1st Quarter.

Sweet Sean Bang actually took it upon himself to carve his own stamp at home
so it flowed visually with the Pikachu he wire wrapped.
(the others used the recycled ones provided)

And then creative Emily Mercado thought to wrap two chess pieces together,
plus add a few beads!

Megan Hur, 
another top art student,
 has the whole visual flow thing going on here between the colors in her pendant, 
box and tissue paper.

David Cho shows us wonderful fine motor skills as he carefully wrapped his pendant,
stamped his paper and collaged his box.
All the kids are graded on their craftsmanship, 
and David had some of the best in the class as you can see above.

And Pamela Yo shows off her art skills as well in this very creative pendant design.

And lastly we have Skye Garcia, volleyball champion extraordinaire, 
who also really enjoys the arts.
She delves into the mind and soul thru her colors and design.
Very expressive!

I've hope you've enjoyed seeing a glimpse of the work of these wild and crazy 7th graders.  

Friday, November 7, 2014



For 5 points of extra credit this weekend visit the Holiday Faire in Irvine,
and get your pix taken with one of your favorite artists in their booth.
Show me the pix or e-mail it to me on Monday
Click here for info, times and address.