SchoolArts Magazine

AUG-SEP 2013

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Middle School Studio Lesson acking Cr the Egghead Chantal Moesinger T he students in my junior high art class have only had a semester of art foundations, and most never had an art class in elementary school. As a result, many of them lack the artistic experience that one would expect junior high students to have. Because of this, I provide formulas for success to ensure an impressive final product that will amaze my administration and prove my value to the school. The problem is, after nine years of teaching portraiture I have been getting frustrated with the results. Traditional Approaches For a long time, I taught drawing the way I was taught, using the "egghead" method and memorizing traditional facial proportions. I analyzed master portraits with students, then encouraged them to bring in a photo and draw a portrait. After all of that instruction, wouldn't you think the results would be fantastic? The answer turned out to be a resounding "no." Students weren't prepared to draw anything other than a straight-on view of a face. They reverted to memorized proportions even when the person they were drawing had wider set eyes, a smaller mouth, or larger ears. Worse yet, some copied the example I made during my demonstration. I asked myself what I had actually taught them. 32 August/September 2013 SchoolArts

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