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.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thanksgiving Gratitude

As we head into Thanksgiving I'll share some gratitude! Yesterday I was featured on the school district website with some photos from taken in our drawing class thanks to a recent interview I did for the podcast Talks With Teachers and I'd like to thank the school district administration and Brian from Talks With Teachers for supporting my work and the arts.  I'd also like to thank all my students and their supportive parents for making teaching worthwhile!  Have a safe and happy thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Drawing: Scholastic Week

This week in drawing class we will be creating work for the 2015 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.  In addition to the regular categories each student should choose one of the three categories below and create a work which will be due next Wednesday (Dec 3, 2014).  Each category has links to more information along with examples of previous winners.

The Gedenk Award for Tolerance: Consider ehat we can all do to learn from humanity's mistakes

The Duck Tape Brand AwardIncorporate Duck Tape into your art work

Creativity and Citizenship: Examine opinions and ideas on the topic of Technology and Privacy

Monday, November 24, 2014

Art and Media Art Honor Society field trip to MoMA & NYC

On Friday the Art and Media Art Honor Society had our annual field trip to NYC and this year we visited the Museum of Modern Art and the Henri Matisse's Cut Outs and Robert Gober's The Heart Is Not a Metaphor exhibitions along with the fantastic permanent collection.

The Matisse show was enlightening and it was great to see the pieces we've been studying up close along with background on how they were created but it was also very crowded!

Bring your pictures from the trip to the next honor society meeting and we'll post a few more up on the blog!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Art Honor Society field trip to the Museum of Modern Art

Today is our Art Honor Society field trip to the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.  We will be leaving promptly at 8am and returning this afternoon around 3-4pm.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Japan Society's Going Global Exchange

This week we are participating in Japan Society's Going Global program and we will collaborate with students in Japan, Pakistan, the United States, and Iceland.  We will begin with two short questions:

1. What's Your Sentence? (take a look at the video above for context)

2. Who's your hero? (and why?)

Each student will answer both questions on a piece of paper then we will log on to the social network: http://goglobalsns.org/ and we'll share one of our answers.  We will then have a conversation about the different answers from each of the countries and what we have learned.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

AP Art: Monoprint Series

In Studio and AP Art class we are working on  Monoprinting this week using Gelli plates.  I demonstrated how to create a print on Monday and we will be printing all week with a final series of 2 multi-toned prints due on Friday at the beginning of class.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Remembering artist and friend Jeff Fisher

I was shocked to hear the news this weekend that friend and mentor Jeff Fisher passed away suddenly.  Jeff was an inspiration to me and so many of my fellow artists many of them Smithtown students.  Jeff was really an outstanding illustrator as well as an impact-full teacher and a vivacious personality.  He taught figure drawing and location classes at the Drawing Studio in Smithtown since I started teaching in the district 16 years ago and he left an impression on everyone he met.  The quote below is taken from the introduction to his Drawing Studio class and exemplifies Jeff himself. 
"When you mention the word “artist”, there are a few who stand out above the rest. Their style, lovely and immortalized, has the ability to touch our souls. They were not regarded as the elite during their short time on earth. They were the rejected, the outcasts, the young who dared to break from conventional teachings and try to experience art in its rawest, unbridled, most passionate and most rewarding form."
The best way to remember Jeff is through his impact and his artwork and there may no better example than his work with fellow Society of Illustrators members at Walter Reed via the Joe Bonham Project drawing wounded service members from the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts.  The video below shows Jeff at work on the project and accompanies the New York Times article on the project.

I was honored to be asked by Jeff to participate in a exhibition of illustration and cartooning he put together in August at Gallery North in Setauket with friends of his from the Berndt Toast Gang of artists and I'm so thankful I had a chance to celebrate with him at the opening.  Jeff made a pronounced impact on everyone he worked with and will be greatly missed and condolences to his wonderful family.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Art Honor Society: MoMA Field Trip

Next Friday the Art and Media Art Honor Society will embark on our fall field trip to the MoMA in NYC to see the Henri Matisse Cut Outs show.  We'll be leaving at 8am and returning at 4pm and we'll be stopping for lunch in the museum and a snack at Starbucks.  It should be a fun trip with a ton of great artwork, take a look at some of the shows that are on display on the link above, we'll be discussing them non Wednesday!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Media Arts: The Stephen Fry Collaborative Project

In Media Arts we are starting out our first collaborative animation project focusing on English actor and author Stephen Fry using a clip of his audio and our own imagination.  We talked about the audio clip and broke it down into what needs to be animated and who is responsible for each aspect.  Your 5-9 index cards will be checked and graded on Monday and we will combine our drawing and look at a rough draft!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Art Honor Society: Printmaking

Today in Art Honor Society we will be working on some Printmaking techniques using the Gelli plates after school.  In classes this week we will do prints based on the Brooklyn Art Library's print exchange theme "Just A Second".  In the club we will work on some advanced techniques and allow students who haven't tried printmaking to give it a try.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Studio Art: The Alison Bechdel Doodle Dare

This week in studio art class we'll be taking part in the doodle dare posed by MacArthur "genius" winning cartoonist Alison Bechdel and the WNYC radio show Studio 360.  She began the drawing and you will be asked to finish it using whatever media you'd like.  Take a look at my first attempt above, it's a great creative challenge- good luck!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Studio Art: Drawing Portraits

In studio art class we are having advanced photo students photograph the class in order to create our next self portrait grid image.  This week all the students will be photographed in our classroom and the images will be printed and we'll use them as reference for a drawing.  Below are two examples from period 4 and the photograph below shows what the process looks like.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Interview with NASA engineer Bobak Ferdowsi

I had a chance to talk with NASA engineer and director of the Mars Curiosity Bobak Ferdowsi on the Weird Education twitter chat with "The Weird Teacher" Doug Robertson!  I asked two questions that apply to our art and media classes, take a look:

As a scientist spotlighted w/ a mohawk what's your advice for colorful students who are less accepted in school?

I always remind people that it takes all types - diversity is scientifically shown to help business. Find a group of people who recognizes you for your positive qualities - best part of science and engineering is that we judge on results, not looks (goes both ways, sometimes “bad” fashion is part of it).

What's your biggest takeaway from attending school in Japan? My class learns & collaborates w/ Japanese schools

Understanding more cultures and thought-processes helps me approach problems from different angles & work better with others.

Here's a link to the Storify of the entire #WeirdEd chat to explore for more questions and answers: http://t.co/IPLfTaiIKm and below is the video of the Mars Curiosity landing that made Bobak a meme!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Media Art: Rotoscoping Basics

This week we are working on a collaborative short film and media project based on actor and author Stephen Fry who we just saw in Stephen Fry in America which you are critiquing with our template today.
We'll be creating our media with a number of different techniques including rotoscoping which we'll demonstrate in class.  Rotoscoping is creating animation from real source images (in our case using some tracing to save time and expedite our animation).  We looked at a clip of Koko the Clown and Betty Boop above which was created by Max Fleischer who invented the rotoscope.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Studio Art: The Walking Dead gets artsy

Fans of The might've noticed that the tv show featured a Caravaggio last night of The Denial of Saint Peter which we saw last year on our field trip to the Met Museum. Today in Studio Art well talk about why the writers and producers chose to include the painting and what it may be symbolic of.

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