SchoolArts Magazine

January 2015

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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P O I N T O F V I E W 12 SchoolArts Continued on page XX. T wenty years ago, while com- pleting my bachelor's degree in studio art, I attended a presentation by a speaker who said that the artist's role should include active leadership within his or her own community. At the time I found this slightly disturbing, espe- cially since I thought my life's calling was to spend my career eternally soli- tary and blissful in the studio. Today I have a deeper understand- ing of what that speaker was trying to communicate. Through a variety of media arts tools, we now have the abil- ity to offer students greater access to the creative process and a wide connec- tion to local and global communities. Multi-Level Collaboration It's exciting to watch students tap into the creative process and apply it to the outside world. One way in which I encouraged my students to do this was through a local collaborative animated story project. Inspiration for this proj- ect initially came from Korean pho- tographer Yeondoo Jung's Wonderland series, which presents costumed ado- lescents posing in sets based as closely as possible on children's drawings. The idea was to have my high-school students collaborate with elementary students in a similar way. The Process I could never have imagined the posi- tive power of student-to-student men- toring coupled with arts, technology, and passion until we ventured into this project. Things began with my digital arts students visiting a local third-grade classroom where they shared a story written by a sophomore student based on the Greek myth of Pandora's box. High school and third-grade students then worked in small groups to develop illustrations for the story. Back at school, students digitally recreated, animated, and pub- lished the illustrations. iBook Authoristos The finished results garnered local and regional recognition. Initially, our plan involved simply publishing the animated story to our Vimeo chan- nel, uploading a static PDF of the text to blurb.com, and tweeting about it until the cows came home. However, after a few local/national presenta- tions caused lots of excitement about student collaboration across multiple levels, our ability to publish the full degree of the project evolved tremen- Matt Cauthron It's exciting to watch students tap into the creative process and apply it to the outside world. Search out meaningful opportunities for profes- sional development such as those that immerse you in another culture. Photo by Nancy Walkup. Continued on page 37.

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