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, February 15, 2019

Last Day of Class


Today is the last day before our winter vacation so make sure all assignments are up to date and submitted! Have a terrific vacation!

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Art Honor Society: Happy Valentines Day

Happy Valentines Day to all members of the Art Honor Society! Today we'll have a one hour meeting and work on the Sketchbook Project, the Vans Custom Culture Contest, and the Japan Society student exchange!

Here's the link to the NAHS handbook and scholarships:  2018-2019 Handbook 

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Studio Art: Book Jacket Re-design

In Studio Art we will learn about 2 important contemporary designers: Chip Kidd and David Carson. Then we will create designs using the information we learned about the process with a book jacket. We will each re-design a jacket for our favorite book using the design principals we learned and the advice each of the designers gave on respecting the audience's intellect and legibility's interaction with communication.

The Harry Potter dust jacket book cover above by Kathie Bayne is a good example of what basics should be included and what a finished design looks like.  You can choose any book you like to redesign as long as it's in the school library.  Below is an additional TED talk by Chip Kidd in which he discusses designing books for authors like Charles Schultz, David Sedarisand David Rakoff.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Dgital Media: Animation

In digital media class we are learning the basics of animation and focusing on Frank & Ollie's Twelve Basic Principles of Animation.  We watched the video above showing how of the the rule of animation applies and what happens when you don't follow the rules.  We will now incorporate the learning into our animation challenges.  The squash & stretch challenge can be done digitally on Piskel and it's due Friday along with your alphabet animation morph.


Monday, February 11, 2019

Computer Art: 3D Art Disk Remix

In Computer Art class we started learning about 3D design and printing be doing a Art Disk Remix based on a design created by Morphi. Above are some of the initial 3D prints of student designs. Today we will learn some of the terminology using our class Quizlet.  We will continue reviewing them today and play Quizlet Live together as a class to prepare for the quiz on Wednesday.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Studio Art: Illustrated haiku poems

We learned about the basics of typography and design in class and now it's time to bring a creative approach to what we learned and pair them together as we learn a bit about Japanese culture.  The image above of the Holstee Manifesto is a great example of great type design and the image below is an example of what we are doing, creating an original illustrated haiku poem.
Haiku poems are 3 lines consisting of 5 syllables on the 1st line, 7 syllables on the 2nd line, and 5 syllables on the 3rd and final line.  We will write 5 haiku poems then choose our favorite to illustrate.  We'll also be learning a little more about Japanese culture and schools with examples from my travels and discuss our student exchange program with the Japan Society.  Below is an example of the traditional Japanese haiku illustrated.

In the TED talk below Billy, who was a two-term U.S. Poet Laureate, explains the project and how his poems were animated for the Sundance Channel.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Art Honor Society: No Meeting Today/Japan Society

There will be no Art or Media Art Honor Society meeting today but we are still looking for volunteers to house the Japanese student visitors in March.  The application for the Japan Society program is now up for the summer as well.  We will be meeting next Thursday as scheduled!

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Digital Media: Video Haiku's

In Digital Media we are completing our video haiku poem's today, make sure the are exported (shared) as mpeg videos so that we can review them.  Remember all video and images must be your own.  Above is an example I did in class this week.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Computer Art: 3D designing Modular Art Disks

In Computer Art class we are beginning the 3D design unit with a 3D printing remix of Morphi's Modular Art Disks.  We are going to use the same sizing from the source files and create our own interchangeable disks.  We'll look at how that works in different programs including Morphi and Tinkercad then print the disks and build with them. later in the week.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Studio Art: Augmented Reality Flag Design

This week we are working on re-designing a new flag for the town of Smithtown and we are going to take a note from Roman Mars, host of the 99% Invisible (one of my favorite design podcasts), and work to create a better flag for our town, Smithtown.  We are going to watch his TED talk and learn about vexillology, the study of flags, and then critique our town flag based on the basic design rules that he shares written below.

1. Keep it simple. (The flag should be so simple that a child can draw it from memory.)
2. Use meaningful symbolism.
3. Use two to three basic colors.
4. No lettering or seals. Never use writing of any kind.
5. Be distinctive

Our flag is definitely what we learned Vexillologists would call a "SOB" (a seal on a bedsheet) so we are going to help our town out by creating a new flag design that represents the 21st Century.  We are also going to use the Quiver app to create a virtual augmented reality video show off how great our new flag designs would look flying over the school and in town.  Be creative, be original- this project is due on Wednesday 3/29!

Here's a few of my favorite flag redesigns from last year for inspiration!

We will create 6 thumbnail drawings in color, then one full color design then take that design and bring it into Augmented Reality using a template.  The last step of the project is to record your flag design with augmented reality and share it, below is an example of the flag in Augmented Reality.

Friday, February 1, 2019

Scholastic Art Awards Day!

Today is Scholastic Art Awards Day! We have a number of different students in various classes who entered and did tremendous work.  Here's a link to the full winners list. Congratulations to AP student Chris Jarosak on winning a Silver Key in Digital Art for his piece Pulled Down and an Honorable Mention in Drawing and Illustration his piece Mountain.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Art Honor Society: Underwater Museum of Art

Today we'll collaborate on an entry for the UMA Underwater Museum in Florida.  We'll design a sculpture to be places at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean like the example below.  We will also learn about designing in 3D and using programs like Morphi and Tinkercad and the 3D printer to materialize our design.
Image result for underwater museum of art
Underwater Museum of Art Florida Sculptures

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Studio Art: Vans Shoe Design Contest

Well continue our design unit in Studio Art in 3rd quarter by working on creating designs for the 2019 Vans Custom Culture Contest.  Above are four shoe designs that were entered last year that were created by students then painted by AP art class and National art Honor Society.  Below is a closer look at our final collaborative ART shoe.
The contest this year has specific rules and themes so each student should create a design on the shoe templates for the three themes: OFF THE WALL, LOCAL FLAVOR & ART in color.  You can add any elements to the shoe you wish (they don't need to be wearable) but can't include any copyrighted materials like logos. Below are some examples of winning shoe designs that incorporated other elements.
Image result for vans Custom Culture Contest 2017
The 3 designs will be due on Friday when we will vote for our favorites to submit to the first round.  If we are one of the 500 schools chosen as finalists we will once again get the free shoes that we must paint and create the final designs.  There are a number of great prizes, see the link above for more information.  Below is a short video showing finalist designs from 2016 showing their creative process.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Digital Media: Film Editing

In Digital Media we are learning Film Editing with Adobe Premiere and our first assignment is creating a short montage with film clips supplied in class.  You should use the cut, zoom, and time stretch features as well as the copy and paste tools and the filters in your clip which is due as a mpeg on Wednesday.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Computer Art: Welcome!

Today is the first day of Semester 2 so welcome to new students in Computer Art class! This class has been evolving over the years along with the technology so we will begin with a short introduction, a link to the Google Classroom, and an assessment to see what skills students have from their previous varied classes.  Below is a short film from a few years ago that gives you an idea of the types of work we do in class.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Film: Refection

We just concluded our semester long film class so this week I'll be sharing some of the work we did on social media in anticipation of the Scholastic Art Awards that we entered which announce first round winners next week! Above is a post showing off Greg's post-it note animation.

Friday, January 18, 2019

End of Semester 1

Congratulations! We have arrived at the end of the first semester.  Please make sure all work is handed in and you remain seated in an upright position during landing...

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Media Art: Digital Haiku Video Poem

In Digital media we will begin our film unit with a short video poem project. We will be writing and filming a haiku poem. A haiku is a poem with 3 lines (5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables). Below is a short video about Haiku and it's history in Japan.

The Digital haiku can be created with pictures, drawings, or video but the video should include the haiku with written or spoken and be at least 7 seconds long with original imagery.  We will begin by writing 5 haiku's in class and submitting them.  We will then work on creating the video and learning how to edit, add audio, and create different effects.  Above and below are example digital haiku I created as examples.
You can be as creative or literal as you like when filming , take a look as some of my favorite video poems from professionals below for inspiration.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Film: Film Editing

As we are wrapping up the Film I class we are completing a short 30 second editing montage in class using Adobe Premiere.  Take a look at the professional advice from a few Oscar nominated editors in the video above for inspiration.  Make sure you edit and final film are done and submitted by Friday, it's the last day of class!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Studio Art: Typography

In Studio Art class we started working on a Typography design project yesterday 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 also learned 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. We will continue by creating a letterform design this week (like example below) until we have a full set and then I will show you how you can digitize them and create a font. 
We are completing our Typography this week as the last project of the quarter.  Make sure you font designs are complete for Friday in class as it's the last day grades will be inputted before midterm week.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Extra Credit: Scholastic PSA Contest

The final extra credit assignment for the quarter is the Scholastic PSA Contest.  Below are the basics but you cans follow the link above to find more information and see last years winners.  Here is a link to the ENTRY FORM. To receive extra credit for this semester make sure it's handed in and submitted to the contest by Friday (otherwise it will count towards quarter 3)!

Contest Deadline
Entries must be postmarked by February 4, 2019, and received by February 18, 2019.
Contest Overview
  • Entries must be storyboards or written scripts on 8.5 x 11-inch paper that reflect the PSA topic—preventing drowsy driving—and should be 30 seconds in length.
  • Only individual entries will be accepted—no group entries.
  • No videos, discs, or digital submissions.
  • Teachers may mail all students’ entries in one envelope for the class—each entry does not need to be in a separate envelope.
  • Each entry must have a completed and signed contest entry form stapled to it. Download the entry form above. (Note: You may want to print and complete the teacher portion of the entry form before copying it to distribute to students.)
  • Online submissions are not permitted.
  • Entries with completed entry forms must be mailed to: 
Drive2Life Contest
Scholastic Inc.
Attention: M. Tulley
557 Broadway
3rd Floor
New York, NY 10012
Judging Criteria
Entries will be judged on the following criteria:
  1. Originality and creativity [30 points] (Is the PSA unique and creative?)
  2. PSA concept [30 points] (Does the PSA clearly and accurately address the contest topic—to help prevent drowsy driving? Are the message and concept effective?)
  3. Clarity of message [30 points] (Is the idea communicated clearly? Is the PSA well organized?)
  4. Quality of writing [10 points] (Does the PSA reflect proper spelling and grammar?)

Student Prizes
The Grand Prize winner receives $1,000 and a trip to New York City, where a professional film crew will transform the student’s entry into a 30-second video! The winner and PSA video will be featured on Teen Kids News and in select Scholastic magazines.
Four runners-up (two from grades 6–8 and two from grades 9–12) will receive $500 each.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Film: light painting

There is one week left of film class and we are completing out light painting film today.  Next week you will work on creating the final film for class.  Make sure all you work is in by next Friday, I hope to see you all in film 2.  Below is our quick class demo.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

AP ART: Final Portfolio Deadline Tomorrow

Anyone who is interested in applying to AP ART remember that the Final Portfolio Deadline is Tomorrow, Friday January 9!  Scheduling is occurring this week and only students with portfolios submitted will be able to enroll in the class for next year. 

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Digital Media: 2019 Doodle for Google

In Digital Media class we are working on creating designs for the 2019 Doodle for Google contest.  The theme is:

When I grow up, I hope…

This year’s theme invites you to show us what you hope for in your future. Male sure to be creative and you the strengths and skills you developed in class this semester.  Below is a recent Google doodle celebrating artist Paul Klee's 139th Birthday that I loved (can you find the word Google inside?) 

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Film: Cinematography

This week we are exploring cinematography and we'll be learning some of the basics such as the 13 standard camera shots and we'll be using the DSLR camera simulator to apply what we learned about camera settings. We'll also be looking into the careers of some Smithtown alumni such as cinematographer Mike McSweeney pictured with me below at his film's premiere in the Hamptons Film Festival.

Monday, January 7, 2019

End of Semester

There are 10 days left till the End of Semester so make sure all your assignments and extra credit is completed and turned in! It will be midterm week before you know it.  This also means the semester classes are ending so lets enjoy the end of the classes.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Film: DSLR Cameras for Film

In Film we are going to explore using DSLR Cameras for Film which is a growing trend for filmmakers.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Studio Art: One Word 2019

Happy New Year everyone! This week we are going to work one creating a #OneWord resolution for 2019 and making it a graphic image we can use for inspiration.  This concept comes from author and speaker Jon Gordon who came from Smithtown along with Jimmy Page (not the Led Zeppelin guitarist) and Dan Britton who wrote the book One Word that Will Change Your Life.  Jon Gordon returned to Smithtown speak here a few years ago and was inspirational, below is a look at his Football highlight reel from the late 1980's which appears to be taken here at Smithtown East at points.

The idea behind choosing one word is that it's simple, memorable, and more realistic as a driving force for you but it's important to be authentic and think about what you really need in your life before choosing a word.  Here's a clip of Jon on the Today Show talking about the process and the questions to ask yourself when considering your word.  I chose my word. CREATE, early this year and painted it on the classroom wall as a daily reminder which has made an impact.

We are going to talk about how to choose your one word then you will create an 8"x10" design incorporating the word to use for inspiration.  Tomorrow we'll finish our designs and then Wednesday we'll share our work and talk about our goals and why we choose the words we did. Remember to keep it positive and focused, we are starting out on a blank slate in 2016!

Below is a short animation I made yesterday in my film class with the word I choose for 2019, focus.  Choose your word and we'll share the results tomorrow!

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Digital Media: Flextangles

In Digital Media we will be working with the STEAM projects Flextangles and taking them to the next level with digital media.  The Flextangle template is in the assignment drive or here online and we will use digital media such as digital drawing and photography to create our Flextangles in Adobe Photoshop.  The completed Flextangle should have 4 separate lines of images that correspond like a kaleidoscope.  We will design them then print and construct them as 3D objects.  The final product will be due on Thursday April 7.  Above is an example of what they look like and below is a video showing how they work from Babble Dabble Do.

Here is a demonstration that I created in class using street art I photographed in Brooklyn.  As you can see below the sections need to correspond to work properly as a 3D object.
Each student should use ORIGINAL images (your photographs) or drawings to create a creative flextangle in Photoshop one layer at a time.  When you are finished be sure to use the text tool and add your name in as well the we will print them out and assemble them in class later in the week. The last step is to follow the steps on the template and make it a 3D object which will be graded on Wednesday 1/17

The demonstration I made in class using photographs of street art that I took at 5 Pointz in Queens can be seen above, think of a fun and interesting way that you can design a flextangle that reflects your interests!

Friday, December 21, 2018


Today is the last class day of 2018 so I want to wish everyone and terrific holiday and winter break!  Make sure all assignments are submitted by today for credit because we only have 12 class days left of the semester.  Enjoy the time off and have fun!

Thursday, December 20, 2018

National Art Honor Society: Holiday Party

Today is our last National Art and Media Art Honor Society meeting of 2018 and we'll celebrate with a holiday party afterschool!  We'll end at 3pm and have a short officers meeting to plan the new year.

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Film- Squash and Stretch Animation Challenge

In Film class we are wrapping up the basics of animation and focusing on Frank & Ollie's Twelve Basic Principles of Animation.  We watched how of the the rules of animation apply and what happens when you don't follow the rules.  We will now incorporate the learning into our animation challenges.  The squash & stretch challenge can be done on paper or digitally or even with post-it notes if you're up for the challenge!  It's due Friday.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Digital Media: Digital Zentangle

In Digital Media class this week we will be drawing and designing Digital Zentangles in Adobe Photoshop.  The file size should be 8" x 8" and students can create any kind of ORIGINAL design (don't copy and paste other people's work) to fill the page.  They work best with a central design element (shape or word) but feel free to be creative!

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Art Honor Society: Japan Society Junior Fellows Program 2019

We will once again take part in the Japan Society Program in 2019 so any students interested in hosting Junior Fellows at Smithtown High School East in March can talk to me about the program if you are interested.  I've taken part in the program along with other Smithtown teachers, administrators, and students.  You would host a student that is matched up with your interests for a little under 2 weeks and they would follow you to classes.

If you take part in the program you can also apply to travel to Japan in the summer and be hosted by a Japanese student for a week:

Deadline for Application: Friday, February 15, 2019 (Postmarked)
Program Schedule for U.S. to Japan Trip: July 8–28, 2019 

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Studio Art: LI's Best Art Competition

In Studio Art we are beginning work on the LI's Best Art Competition which is due on Wednesday next week.  Below is a link to the artworks you can base your work on- it should be used as an inspiration for your piece, don't copy the work directly.  You can use any media and it can be any size smaller than 20".  Above are some winning examples from last year.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Studio Art: Hour of Code Week

In Studio Art we are finishing up Hour of Code Week today.  We did 3 short coding assignments: Artist, Frozen, and Intro to App Lab.  When you are finished you will Beta Test 2 student created video games from my Digital Media class that are located (along with a rubric) in the Assignment drive.

Friday, December 7, 2018

AP Art: LI Best competition at the Heckscher Museum

In AP Art we are currently working on the entries for the LI Best competition at the Heckscher Museum.  Be sure to complete your entry and your artists statement about how your work was inspired from a the piece you chose which showed in the museum this year.  Below is a terrific example from Anna in last year's AP Art class that made it into the exhibition.  It was based on Rubens Santoro's painting Grand Canal, Venice on the left.
Here's the link to the works exhibited this year in the museum: 2017-2018 Museum Art

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Art Honor Society: Murals and Classroom Re-design

I'm proud to share my latest article on our Classroom Re-Design Project which was published in this year's issue of the TAEA TRENDS Journal.  Today we will be continuing the re-design project in our new classroom space room 157, measuring and preparing for the twin zen gardens, and completing the Art mural in the hallway!  We will also begin working on our Sketchbook Project and planning and going over the AP Art course guidelines.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Studio Art: Artist Inspiration

This week in Studio Art we will complete our first art history unit by creating a work of art in our sketchbook inspired by one of the artists we learned about in class.  This is done by professionals as well such as the portraits above by Picasso and Matisse who showed their work to each other and were rivals and friends.  The piece is due today on Wednesday.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Media Art: Poster House + The Library of Congress Poster Animation Challenge

We are learning the history and basics of animation this month and creating animations for a Poster House + The Library of Congress competition which is asking for modern takes on historical designs like the one above.

After sifting through thousands of posters in the Library’s collection, Poster House selected 31 images that speak of ages past, are free of any copyright issues, and are ready to party. All you need to do is visit the Library of Congress online to download a high res version of the file, crop it as you see fit, and lend your creative touch by animating it in a unique, fun, and compelling way.

We will learn the basics of digital animation they create films using these historical posters by December 21.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Film: Scholastic Short Films

As we are working on our Scholastic Short Films we looked at director Spike Jonze and how he can tell a short story without works like the example above. Monday you have all class to edit your films and you can access free music to use in your films here: Bensound.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Extra Credit: Scholastic Art Awards and StoryCorps

There are 2 extra credit assignments for December: entering the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards which are due by Tuesday at midnight and recording a Storycorps interview with a family member and posting it online by January 2.  Follow the links for more information and see me if you have any questions.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Art Honor Society: Winter Projects

Today in Art Honor Society we will review our Winter Projects some of which are listed below and review the field trip we took last week to MoMA in NYC as well as collecting photos and videos for our film.

  • National Art Honor Society Induction Ceremony
  • Media Art Field trip to Museum of the Moving Image
  • School Murals- Challenge Day, Art, & the Classroom
  • Holiday Cards for the local Nursing Home
  • The Sketchbook Project
  • Artist Trading Card Swap

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Film: Choice Film for Scholastic Art Competition

In Film this week students have a choice Film assignment for the Scholastic Art Competition.  Create a film using any media and in any genre for the competition and complete it by Tuesday for submission.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Studio Art: Scholastic Art Week

In Studio Art it's Scholastic Art Week so we'll be taking on one of the AP Art summer assignments:

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.

Also make sure to study the class Quizlet for the quiz on Thursday and Friday!

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