Ian Sands has taken a new position at South Brunswick HS Check out it out!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

reCreating Art History

This will be my seventh year teaching Art History. Over the years, my teaching style has continually evolved. The first year I pretty much did the lecture thing, showed PowerPoints, had students take notes.

Over the next few years, I tried to move away from lecturing and more towards student research.  We created an Art History Ning where I posted questions and teams of students would research and post their findings to the forums. I called it Toss and Remix. However, students still kept notebooks.

Art History Toss and Remix from iansands on Vimeo.

I've tried a few different ideas to move the class away from the notebook. One year I tried having them keep flashcard with an image of the artwork on the front and their notes on the back. I thought it was a great idea however, it was a total fail. Keeping up with the cards was a pain for both students and teacher.

This year I thought I might try having the students keep journals. You know, like the Journal Junkies? This might be fun cause students could doodle and write and paste and all sorts of things in their journals. Then I thought, what if I went one step further...

I've always included projects in my class. We've built art history kites and art history putt  putt golf.. And these projects were all assignment by me.

What if, instead of notebooks or journals, the students had to create a self-directed project that encompassed what they discovered for each unit? So if a student wanted to create a journal for that unit that incorporated their finds  that would work. But another student might create a painting or a collage or a 3D sculpture.

In addition to the project, students could maintain a blog, similar to the way the Computer Art and Art One classes already do. They would post photos and give a written description of their projects.

So what does that mean? I'm not sure yet. Does this idea have potential or am i going way to far? That's why I'm opening the idea up for discussion. I would love to read your thoughts so feel free to post a comment.

Make your own photo slideshow at Animoto.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Art of Education..

The Art of Education blog posted a nice write up about the collaboration between the Apex HS Computer Art Class and the Elementary 1st Grade class. 

Friday, December 21, 2012

Last Minute Christmas Shopping Ideas

If you're like me... and I'm like most people... you waited till the last minute to get your Art Student a gift. Now you're stuck trying to figure out what you can get. Should you buy another Snuggy? A coffee cup that reads Worlds Best Art Student? Well hold on! Before you do.... I'm here to help.

I've composed a list of...

The Top 10 Gifts to Give an Art Student!

#10. Scone Mix!

As you know, the second Friday in October is International Bring A Scone to Art Class Day! Well, 2013 is right around the corner and nobody wants to get caught empty handed on such an important holiday!


# 9. Sketchbook Pro!

If there is one app we've used again and again this year it has been Sketchbook Pro. It's only a few bucks to buy but the value will last a lifetime!! or something corny like that.


# 8. Board Games!

Learning perspective is easy. Mastering it?... Well, that's another story. It takes practice. What better way to practice one and two point linear perspective than by drawing board games?


Observational drawing is great for improving overall drawing skills. Drawing shoes, bottles or oranges is nice. Drawing Cupcake.. now that better! Especially if Cupcake is the name of your 15 pound snapping turtle!


We spent so much time creating those interactive street art chalk murals it wouldn't be a surprise to learn that someone would want a camera to take some photos of people interacting with them, right? Plus a camera is also good for creating forced perspective images and cinemagraphs! 


A blender is good for soo many things. Sure, making smoothies but also for mixing slip and creating a moss based mixture for moss graffiti. Our moss graffiti never really worked so a blender might come in handy if any of our students wanted to try this again. 


# 4. Make Art Gloves!!

I got these as a Christmas present and let me just say they might just make the perfect gift. These gloves say that 2013 will be the year you Make Art.. or get punched!


Shameless plug! Come on, I wrote a book, I gotta plug it somewhere! Plus, you can download the E version for Kindle free the week after Christmas! 


# 2. Rain Boots!!

If it rains, the art trailer is submerged. It's true. rain boots will keep your art student dry and a dry footed art student is much more likely to focus on his or her art project than a wet footed art student. 


I believe, I believe, every day's good day when you paint! That's why I believe, I believe, that the Bob Ross Remix on CD would be the ultimate Christmas gift for any art student.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

And on the 12th Day of Photoshop!

First, thanks to all the students who brought in cookies and goodies to school this week. Yum!

Now, for the last and 12th Day of Photoshop...

A Holiday Mashup!!

The assignment is pretty straight forward. Take any holiday between Thanksgiving and New Years and mash it up with a famous work of art. As with all the Days of Photoshop, the students only had one day to create the image.  

See if you can guess both the holiday theme and the famous work of art! And have a very Merry Photoshop!!!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

iPads Sketches and Clay Tile Reliefs

Students in Art 1 are working on building clay tiles that represent a Biome of their choice. The students learned the different ways to hand build and construct a relief with clay. They are currently finishing up with the first stage of the project.

In the meantime, we took a trip to the Media Center to create some color sketches using sketchbook Pro on the iPad. We used the ipads camera to capture a previously made pencil sketch. Then imported the pics into Sketchbook Pro to use as a guide for the color sketches.

After the tiles are fired, we'll paint them with acrylic paint. These color sketches are a first look at what they might be like completed...






More...Landscape Paintings on the iPads

 Art 1 students are Painting their landscapes on the iPads. The students started with sketches, took a picture of the sketch with the iPad, then painted on a new layer. These paintings will be used as reference for their acrylic paintings on canvas. How cool is it to plan your painting with technology? Check out previous iPad to acrylic paintings here.

Monday, December 17, 2012

On the Tenth Day of Photoshop...

On the Tenth Day of Photoshop my Students..

Turned a pop Icon into a sculpture! 

Pop icons range from toys like Barbie to singers like Ke$ha, even McDonald’s French fries might be considered a pop icon..

Sculptures range from ancient ruins like Easter Island to modern day artists like Calder or Segal.. from Renaissance classics like the David to fountains in the park.

Both the pop icon and the sculpture should be easily recognized by your audience.

Like all the other Days of Photoshop, you have one day to create and post this assignment.  Here we go!

 Oppa Ganam Style

Taylor Swift



Pee Wee

The Hangover

Easter Frieland! LOL! 

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Best of 2012!

January 2012: Masking Tape Murals!

The new Art One class spent the day creating masking tape murals around the school. Take a look at the process we went through to get to this point. 


February 2012: Now That is Painting!

This project encouraged students to incorporate paint splats into an image. It was wide open. The only requirements were... Click here to find out.


March 2012: Skittle Portraits!

A hundred pounds and $100 dollars later, we finally finished our expressive Skittle portraits. See more Skittles art here!


The article features two Apex HS Art projects, the Mud Project and Bricks as Pixels.


This stop motion animation (this is not a sped up video) created by the Art History class used 1000's of photos and took the entire semester to complete.


June 2012: Cinemagraphs

Cinemagraphs are still photographs in which a minor and repeated movement occurs. Our Computer Art class created these cinemagraphs in PhotoShop to give the illusion that the viewer is watching a video. See more Cinemagraphs here!


It's an art teacher thing, make sure we toss in a little art history with each lesson. We can't help it.  check out the list of top 10 artists I told you about but you probably forgot!


Everyone loves a good stencil but lets be honest, not everyone loves spray paint. So here at the Apex Institute for Spray Paint Alternatives, we are exploring other stencil creating options.


September 2012: Interactive Street Art!

After a week of planning and chalking, our interactive chalk murals are ready for some interactivity! Each mural was designed to be interacted with in some way. You might hold the lollipop, climb the ladder to grab a book or get blown away by an angry cloud. See all the interactive murals here!


October 2012: Light Graffiti!

Stencils.. They're not just for breakfast anymore.. or, uh spray paint. They work really well when painting with light. This is our first round of light graffiti painting. The first three images were actually painted using a cellphone. The rest were painted with glow sticks. Check out more light paintings!


We started a unit on perspective last week. One of the ideas was to bring in board games, play them then draw them. And we did that. The next step was to complete a final finished perspective drawing in watercolor and colored pencil. And we did that. And here are some of those pieces.


December 2012: iPads to Acrylics!

Before we pulled out the paints to create our acrylic paintings on canvas, our class created color sketches on the iPads. It wasn’t till I went back and looked at the iPad sketches that I realized how well the students had translated their ideas and compositions between the two media.Compare for yourself here!


Wanna see previous Best of Years??

See you in 2013!

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