Welcome to Art Room 161

This blog was created as an extension of the dialogue that began in our classroom and the purpose is to share creative ideas, images, and critiscm. All posts should be appropriate for the high school classroom and critiscm should be helpful and positive.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Film: Examining Television Pilots

In Film we are examining television pilots to learn how they work so we can create one so today we'll take a look at a few different formats to compare and contrast.  Well look at both old and new show to see how the share the who, what, where, and how in the first 15 minutes of the show.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Studio Art: Zentangle

In studio art we are going to learn to various Zentangle techniques this week for our first big project next week.  Below are some of the tangle patterns we'll be using to create our sketchbook piece. 
We will fill the page completely with different patterns for a complete piece that will be graded Friday.  Next week we will draw an animal or statement and Zentangle it like the example below.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Extra Credit: Embracing Our Differences

Our first Extra Credit assignment this year is the Embracing Our Differences contest.  Create work in any media that is HORIZONTAL and fits the theme of "enriching lives through diversity and inclusion."  The work is due by October 14 so it can be delivered by October 15 to the contest.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Digital Media: Dot Day Augmented Reality

In Digital Media we will celebrate Dot Day today by creating original Augmented Reality drawings on Photoshop.  Each student will create an intricate "dot" that represents the spirit of Peter Reynolds children's book The Dot.  Creating a dot is not really the challenge, it's more creating a original and inventive dot that represents you.  Make sure you sign it and we'll create a short film of all our dots to share with the elementary students and social media. 

Friday, September 14, 2018

Studio Art: Illustration Friday- Anonymous

It's the end of our second week so in Studio Art classes we'll take on another Illustration Friday challenge, this week's theme is: Anonymous.  Create an illustration that fits the theme using the full page in color or black and white using any media!

Digital Media: Green Screen Self Portraits

In Digital Media our first assignment is to take a green screen self portrait and use the chroma key technique in Photoshop to create an original Green Screen Self Portrait like the example above from class.  We'll be sharing all the images on Monday as we transition to our next project, an introduction to code!

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Film: Virtual Reality Film and Photography

Film Class - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
In our Film and Video class we are learning a bit about how Virtual Reality Film and Photography works by experimenting with a Theda Camera this week. Check out the interactive photograph above from Wednesdays class.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Studio Art: Illustration Friday

In our Studio Art class we dedicate each Friday of the first semester to creative drawing based on a thematic prompt which we term: Illustration Friday.  The first prompt will be reflective- the first week of school.  Create a full page drawing illustrating your experience in color.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Welcome to the First Day of School 2018

Welcome to the First Day of School 2018! I'm Mr. Needles and this is our class blog, this year I'm teaching:
  • AP Studio Art
  • Film and Video
  • Studio Art
  • Digital Media
  • Computer Art & Design
Today and tomorrow we'll be going over some of the basic and the class projects and expectations but we are going to begin class today by creating!

We'll also take a look at the art and media art honor societies and what they do, here's a look at one of our previous years events and activities!

Monday, June 11, 2018

2018-2019 AP Summer Assignments

Summer Assignments:
All assignments can be done in any medium, technique and style you desire but should be entirely original (do not use other people’s pictures, characters, or content in any way) and fit the AP Test you are planning on taking (Drawing, 2D, or 3D).  Part I and II should be shared before August 1 if you want feedback and Part III can be shared when school begins.

Part I: Breadth Assignments:
These assignments will be critiqued during the first weeks of classes and later graded. You can share them with me via social media over the summer for feedback twitter/instagram to @timneedles with #NeedlesClass or email tneedles@smithtown.k12.ny.us.
1. A Mixed-Media Portrait – Create a portrait using various media in monochrome or in color. Feel free to use any medium you desire (ink, collage, newspaper, paint, & other mixed media) and as many media as you like. The style may be handled in any way you wish: realistic, abstract, expressive, impressionistic or cubistic, etc. This portrait should reveal something significant about the model. Hands, torso and face are important features and should be included in the work. Try an unusual surface. The portrait may be done on any flat smooth unbreakable surface such as cardboard, mural paper, plywood, masonite, plexiglass, homasote board, etc.
2. Mise En Scene- Read the definition below and create a work that has a theme of mise en scene in some way. 

[mee zahn sennoun French1. the process of setting a stage, with regard to placement of actors, scenery, properties, etc. 2. the stage setting or scenery of a play 3. surroundings; environment.
3. Man vs. Nature- Create a work showing the contrast between man vs nature. This can be through a narrow or wide lens and it can be literal or figurative. Try to stay away from the cliché imagery and find a unique, personal take on a very ancient theme.
4. Inspiration- Take a look at this list of 100 Artists from Art 21, choose any artist and create a piece responding to (not copying or in their style) their work. The list includes everyone from artist who use traditional media such as: Cindy Sherman and Richard Serra to artist like: Ai Weiwei, Marina Abramović, and Laurie Anderson who do performance pieces. Video clips are available for each artist on the website so do a bit of research, find something in one of the artists that you connect to and create a piece on it.  Make sure you include the artists name who the inspiration came from on the back.

5: A Day In Your Life - Choose a moment from your everyday life and express it visually using any media. This can be a moment that’s memorable or very average, reoccurring or just a moment you remember. Try to use media that helps illustrate the moment and think about your perspective vs. others when creating the imagery.

Part II: Choice Assignments:
Create a series of 65 works (about 1 piece a day during the summer).  Feel free to experiment creatively and use different media, the subject matter is also your choice but I'd suggest that you both work from life and you imagination.  If you get stuck and are at a loss for what to do I suggest using creative promts such as my own #TERPart or some of my favorites like JJCommunity for photography and Illustration Friday for drawing or #31nights which can work for anything!

If you use a sketchbook that would mean 65 pages or if it's photography that would mean 65 images. This work shows process so not every piece would be totally completed but rather a resource to pull from for ideas and creative experiments in the future.
Part III: Shanti Peace Poster Contest
Create a 8"x10' horizontal poster design for the Shanti Peace Poster Contest, the theme this year is GANDHI you are free to use quotes if you wish but make sure the work is original. There is now a winner and a cash prize for each grade level, here's a link to the some winning Smithtown designs from past year's: 2011 Peace Poster

Friday, June 8, 2018

Summer Break

As we approach the summer break I want to encourage all of you to continue creating and sharing in any way you want!  As I hope you've learned the arts are a terrific outlet and that are numerous benefits to expressing yourself so keep the process rolling.  Feel free to share with me on social media and I'm still available as a resource if you have questions about materials, art, artists, or anything else so have a terrific and creative summer- have fun!

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Wrapping Up The School Year

Tomorrow is the last day of classes and seniors will be out of many classes for the senior barbeque so be sure to check your final grades today and make sure all your assignments are submitted because I won't be able to track you down during finals.  Today is also the final exam in digital media class so make sure to use our class quizlet to study.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Last Week of School

It's our Last Week of School so be sure to prepare for the final exam in Digital Media and Film class and make sure all of you final assignments are in for all classes.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Digital Media: Final Review and Final Robotics Project

Before our last project we are going to take a short final exam reviewing the vocabulary and technology we used in class, use the class quizlet to study: DIGITAL MEDIA FINAL.  The test will be on Monday.  Our last project will be on robotics using the Finch and the Ozobot.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Studio Art: Drawing a digital Piskel animation

This week in Studio Art we'll experiment with drawing digitally but creating a short 6 second 8-bit digital animation using the free PISKEL software. You should create an account by using your school google account and begin by drawing a frame after the in-class demonstration. The you can copy or create new frames and change them slightly to create a simple GIF animation like the example shown above. We use this software in other classes like digital media to create longer animations and video game characters.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Digital Media: Video Games

In Digital Media our Video Games are due tomorrow and we will spend a day playing and rating each others video games.  Here's more help pages in case your stuck: Scratch WikiScratch programming basics

Below is an example from Kevin and Erin's games in the 4th period games- Kevin's game is a 3 level space shooting game similar to asteroids.  Try using the rubric below and rating the game

Level 3: https://scratch.mit.edu/projects/225334020/

Erin's game is a dodging game using points. Try using the rubric below and rating the game tto:

Here's another example from Chris in period 2:

Level 1: https://scratch.mit.edu/projects/224737669/

Friday, May 25, 2018

Seven Days Left Of Class

There are only seven days left of class so make sure all of your outstanding projects are in and that you are preparing for the final using our class quizlet review here: Needles Quizlet

Studio Art: Final Review

Media Art: Final Review

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Art Honor Society: Completing the Challenge Day Mural

We only have 2 Art Honor Society meetings left this year as well as a field trip so today we will be completing the Challenge Day Mural by adding the final pieces of text for the year.  Next year we will continue and add a full grade level.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Studio Art: Oliver Jeffers Inspired Collage

Earlier this month I spoke with artists and children's book author Oliver Jeffers at his book release party for his new bool "Here We Are" and asked him what his advice was for us as we work on creating a children's book together.  "Be authentic" he said and shared that "the second I found my style was when I stopped trying to be someone else".  He also said it was important to "learn how to listen to your hand" so we will take that advice for inspiration for our children's book in class.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Robert Indiana

One of the artist we just recently learned about, Robert Indiana, the Pop artist who created the famous “love” sculpture some of us saw on our trip to NYC died on Saturday at his home in Vinalhaven, Maine he was 89 years old.  Here's a link to his NY Times obituary: 

Robert Indiana, 89, Who Turned ‘Love’ Into Enduring Art, Is Dead

Monday, May 21, 2018

AP Art: Where The Wild Things Are

Last week we learned a little bit about children's book author Maurice Sendak, author of  and this week we will continue to look into what a career in illustration, cartooning, and children's books looks like with a look at Oliver Jeffers and others.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Digital Media: Designing a Video Game

In Digital Media our culminating project this year will be Designing a Video Game.  You will need to create your characters in Piskel, design a background in Photoshop, and use Blockly in Scratch to code the game.  You have two weeks to put everything together but the characters and background are due on Monday.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Media Art Honor Society: Field Trip to Cinema Arts Center

In Media Art Honor Society we will planning our last Field Trip of the year to the Cinema Arts Center along with the French Honor Society to see the film The Butterfly on March 30.  Field Trips forms will be available and we will also go over the end of the year events including our induction.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Film: The Power of Improv

In Film class we are learning about The Power of Improv and how it can aid writing and character development. Above is a short TED talk on the power of improv and creativity on the brain that will support some of what we are learning and it's power.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Studio Art: 3D

In Studio Art we are going to begin the 3D unit with a group 3D printing project.  Each group will be assigned an artist that we have already researched and learned about and you will work together to reproduced one of their works as a 3D print.  All of the artist have created sculptures but the work does not necessarily have to be a sculpture, it can be a detail from a painting, street art, or anything else that works.  Above is an example from a 3D printing collaboration in which each group printed part of the sculpture and combined it to reproduce the bust of George Washington and below is an example that I created with students last year.

Monday, May 14, 2018

AP Art Test Day

Friday was the AP Art Test and we are now complete, congrats on all the work you've done this year.  Today is a catch-up day- if you did not submit all your work and answers to the questions to me via Google please do so and let me know which pieces were submitted for Breadth, Concentration, and for Quality so I can reference them in the future if necessary.  Above is an example of a quality section from Ilysa as an example for future classes.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Art Honor Society: 2018 Sketchbook Project

Today in Art Honor Society we will reflect on our 2018 Sketchbook Project that was just completed and mailed in, it will be digitized and going on a tour of North America this summer with stops in New York City, Toronto, and Chicago.  We will also continue to plan our Zen garden and begin writing how we will each "Be The Change" on our Challenge Day mural.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Studio Art: digital illustration

Our next assignment is to create a digital illustration based on this week's Illustration Friday topic: Utopia (an imagined place or state of things in which everything is perfect).  For this illustration we will create at least 3 separate layers using Photoshop and use the Wacom tablet to draw.  You can use your imagination to create whatever look for utopia you'd like but the full US paper page should be colored or shaded.  I included a link to the art attack video above that shows a professional version of a digital illustration, we'll be using the same format as well as a link to the Illustration Friday page which show other examples.  Below is a cool digital example from artist Sombras Blancas from Illustration Friday.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Digital Media: Shanti Peace Poster

In Digital Media Art we are working on creating designs for the 2018-2019 Shanti Peace Poster contest.  Each student should create a 8"x10' poster for the contest, the theme is PEACE AND GANDHI and you are free to use quotes from Gandhi but make sure you  his name correctly.. We will begin by creating thumbnails and I'll discuss your concepts with you and give you suggestions then we will work in mixed media to create the poster in landscape view.  Each grade level has prizes and finalists may be considered for inclusion in the 2018 Shanti Calendar.  The examples above were finalists from previous years and here's a link to the some winning Smithtown designs from past years: 2011 Peace Poster.  The final poster design will be due on Wednesday and we will critique the results in class.

Monday, May 7, 2018

AP Art: AP Testing Week

It is AP Testing Week and the AP Art test is due on Friday meaning all digital images should be uploaded at this point on the AP Studio Art Digital Submission page and the 5 quality works should be mounted by Wednesday so they can be ready for prep on Thursday.  Be sure to share you concentration statements with me as well if you want me to review them once again before submitting.

Friday, May 4, 2018

2018 AP Senior Show 1: Ilysa

This week we're celebrating the opening of our 2018 Smithtown HS East senior AP Art shows with Ilysa's Gallery Exhibit, great to see how much she's developed as an artist over the last 3 years- terrific work!

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Digital Media: Creating Animated GIF's

In Digital Media we are creating animated GIF's in Photoshop like the example above from GIPHY this week.  We had 2 days to create the drawings on layers and today we'll be doing the animating using the timeline.  They are due on Friday and we'll take a look at all of them in class.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

AP Art: Digital Test Submission

All AP Art work is due to be uploaded to the AP Studio Art Digital Submission page for the AP test by this Friday May 4.  All 12 breadth works should be photographed and online now and all 12 concentration pieces should be added along with the 2 AP statements.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Art Honor Society: Sketchbook Project Due Today

Our National Art Honor Society Sketchbook Project is due today so any final touches need to be completed today so we can mail it out in time for the summer tour!

Friday, April 27, 2018

Art Honor Society: The Jon Burgerman Collaborative Mural

In Art Honor Society Thursday we took a look back at our work on the Jon Burgerman Collaborative Mural we worked on 2 years ago this week and worked on designing some of the Zen Garden that we are planning to work on in May in the school courtyard. Our induction ceremony will be on May 25 this year so we hope to complete the Challenge Day mural by that point as well.  It's been a productive year!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Film: Creating an Animated Gif in Photoshop

In Film class our 3rd animation challenge is creating an animated GIF in Photoshop.  The video above shows the basics.  Create a 6-12 frame animation using different layers then open a timeline to convert them to animation frames.  Next make any adjustments then publish and share it with me along with the other 3 challenges by Friday.  Below is a more advanced animation example if you wish to take it further.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Studio Art: Mini-Comics

This week we are drawing and designing Mini-Comics in Studio Art class.  We will learn about the basic elements of a story, the folding techniques, and the variations in the media.  Then we will brainstorm ideas and begin drawing and designing our own.  You can base you comic on the character you created in our warm-up cartooning activities or start create new original characters but the final comic should include 8 pages including a cover with your name and a title and a back with Smithtown High School East, the year, and Mr. Needles written.

We will begin learning how to fold the paper and create the book then sketching out a simple storyboard like the student example seen above.  Once we have a storyboard in full color we'll create the final min-comic like the examples seen below.

After you comic is shaded, toned, and/or colored you should open it back up to one piece of paper and scan it.  We will be scanning these comics after they are completed to show and trade them. The cover and back should be fully toned and colored with the title and your name. Below are a few finished student comics from previous classes.
A number of former students have become comic book artists and work in the film industry creating films based on comics.  We'll take a look at a few during the process of this assignment.

Monday, April 23, 2018

AP Art: Long Island's Best Artwork On View Alongside Mitchells Spring Collection

Congratulations to AP Art students Anna Koke and Ilysa Sirota who's Long Island's Best Artwork from the Heckscher Museum was chosen to be exhibited alongside Mitchells Spring Collection in Huntington.  The work will be on view in the storefront window from April 23 - May 20, 2018.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Digital Media: Webcomics

We are continuing work on our webcomics and the rough draft is due today at the end of class.  The final colored comic is due (5 pages) on Friday 4/27 and again you can use any medium and break it up anyway you like.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Studio Art: Typography

In class we have been working on a type design project so it's time to learn a bit more about Typography and the terminology that goes along with it.  We learned some of the basic terms involved with type that you can review on our quizlet here- Typography terms

We will continue to create a letterform design this week until we have a full set and then I will show you how you can digitize them and create a font.  We will also learn a bit about the history of type to understand better where it might go next.  Remember it's not just an alphabet we are dealing with its a living language that is constructed through design and usage.
Today we are completing our Typography and tomorrow is a short quiz on the terms.  Make sure you font designs are complete for Monday in class.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

AP Art: The Sketchbook Project

The AP Art class and the National Art Honor Society are currently working on this year's Sketchbook Project which is due in 2 weeks.  Our theme is THIS IS NOT WHAT IT SEEMS and students are designing and creating pages within that theme.  Take a look at some of our previous Sketchbook Projects here in the digital library.
  • Postmark by: April 30, 2018

Monday, April 16, 2018

Studio Art: The Gratitude Project

Our last drawing for The Gratitude Project will be to illustrate a quote for ourselves.  Choose or write a quote that will inspire you and use a full page to illustrate it in any media and with any embellishment that fits.

Blog Archive