Monday, March 9, 2015

Reflecting Architectural Printing

We have been spending a lot of time this quarter drawing, printing and sculpting architectural structures. We started with our reflection watercolor prints of famous architectural wonders and then moved onto large-scale paper mache Gothic cathedrals. Photos to come soon!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Paper Mache Gothic-Inspired Cathedrals

Over the last couple of weeks we have been working on architecture design- drawing, printing and now over-sized paper mache relief sculptures. This was a feat for us since we only created 7 works, one on each table in the classroom (more about that later).

To begin we watched an amazing NOVA-produced video called the Building the Great Cathedrals. It was a perfect introduction to these engineering marvels. Students were then asked to draw a Gothic style cathedral using a shape tracing method shown in Deep Space Sparkle's Architecture Made Easy PDF. These drawings became our blueprints for how were were going to construct the cardboard and paper mache sculptures.

The plan was to have each table create a cathedral. That's right- one project per table...all day long. As each class came in for the day, whomever sits at that table would continue to add to that work. This was a challenge in itself; we worked the best we could with what was left after each block. However, this turned out to be a very successful large scale project challenge. Not only was it engaging but the transfer of skills from collaboration, to communication to just plain ol' perseverance was hard to ignore. Nice job 7th graders!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Zentangle Watercolor Animals

Update: Check out the Art of Ed's post today about watercolor techniques. We used many of these techniques in our lesson.

What could be better than intense color, rich pattern and funky animal drawings? Well...if you add a QR code that shares a recorded student reflection with who ever scans it, that will top it!

Here is the outline of our most recent work- Zentangle Watercolor Animals (with QR code reflection)

1. Begin with demo of/practicing watercolor techniques
The techniques we focused on were:
  • Dry Brush
  • Wet-in-wet
  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Salt
  • Scrape
  • Crayon Resist
  • Wash
Great video demos here if you need a refresher on basic watercolor techniques.
2. Practice drawing a large scale animal or animal head. Outline in Sharpie- remember to vary the thickness of the lines! 

3. Break up the animal shape with lines to create multiple spaces. Paint various watercolor techniques within the spaces.

4. Draw Zentangle patterns over the dried paint spaces. Discuss why it's important to put contrasting patterns next to each other. 

5. Use Croak.It! app to record a 30 second reflection about art making process. The questions we answered were as follows:

6. Use QR Code Maker app to turn the Croak.It! recording into a scan-ready QR code. Print and post on completed artwork.

Students enjoy all the aspects of this project- especially practicing all the various watercolor techniques. Adding the QR code was a nice way to wrap up the work and reflect in an unconventional way.