SchoolArts Magazine

APR 2014

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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Beginner Before showing students portions of Reiniger's films, set the stage by asking them to name some of their favorite animated movies or tele- vision shows. Next, explain that you are going to show them examples of some of the first ani- mated works. Ask, "How are Lotte Reiniger's films simi- lar to the animations of today? How are they different?" Next, show students Jones's work. Ask, "What kinds of technology do you think Ben Jones used to create this art? How might this work be influenced by cartoons or video games?" Intermediate Show students excerpts from both Reiniger's films and Ben Jones's video paintings. Explain that these excerpts represent both the earliest and most recent developments in media arts, an art form that combines art, design, technology, interactivity, and time-based media. Place students in small groups and ask them to generate lists of all the different kinds of things they think might fall under the category of media arts. Have each group choose a spokes- person to share their findings with the class. Create a master list of each group's findings and post it in a prominent place in the artroom. Advanced Ask students to look up the definition of media arts on their phones or tablets and share their results with the class. Explain that, because it is still evolving and is considered a new discipline, there is not a single standard definition. As a class, discuss the many elements and products that can be considered media arts. Ask, "Have you ever thought of video games as an art form? What about a website? How is an art web- site different from an e-commerce site?" After some discussion, introduce both Rei- niger's and Jones's artwork to the class. Ask students to compare and contrast the artworks in their journals. Ask, "How might Reiniger's animations be different if they were created today? How might Jones's animation be adapted to work with older technology?" Explore Create Beginner Ask students to create two or more characters that they would like to animate using a variety of paper and collage materials. Explain that before any animation process can take place, animators must plan how their character will move, and what parts will move (mouth, eyes, arms, legs, etc.). Have students design three or four steps for their character's motion sequence. Depending on your classroom access to technology, the artwork could be displayed as a static narrative on paper, digitally photographed and converted to a GIF file, or completed in an anima- tion or movie-making program. Intermediate In small groups, ask students to choose a media arts product that they would like to develop, such as an animation, video game, or interac- tive website. Explain that they will need to create a project proposal that includes a written description of their idea, and designs for all of the important elements, such as character illustrations, scene/set design, examples of a motion sequence, etc. Have each group present their designs to the class, allowing plenty of time for questions and feedback. If the appropriate technology is available, consider having each group complete their project. Advanced Tell students that they will plan and develop a media arts project of their own design. Allow them to work individually or collaboratively, as long as all group members are equally engaged in the work. Because media arts encompasses a wide variety of media and materials, have each student or group submit a project proposal that includes the name of their project, materials and technology needed, outline and timeline, and individual responsibilities. Group members should sub - mit individual plans to ensure that their roles and responsibilities are clear. If possible, work with your school media center to help students obtain the devices needed (if any) to complete their work. Explain that your role during this project will be as a facilita- tor and guide, and that students themselves will be responsible for researching and obtaining any technical expertise needed for the projects. The Internet is a great resource for media arts projects, and much can be learned by viewing online how-to videos. Written by Karl Cole, curator of images at Davis Publications; and Robb Sandagata, digital product manager at Davis Publications. Looking & Learning Producing Resources Lotte Reiniger: www.youtube.com/watch?v=KxkIGXVwZTM www.youtube.com/watch?v=myG5Xg0NaQ4 Ben Jones: www.acegallery.net/artistmenu.php?Artist=138 www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hxk3sSjLSKw "I'd like to be able to talk about it like a young New Yorker might talk about dance parties or graffitti, but when you ask me about Paper Rad I am going to have to tell you about how it was and is just a desperate vital exercise in finding meaning in life. The day to day was about trying not going crazy, about not giving up, it was about being happy." —Ben Jones 30 April 2014 SchoolArts A_pages_4_14.indd 30 2/20/14 3:06 PM

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