SchoolArts Magazine

May 2016

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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SCHOOLARTSMAGAZINE.COM 29 Samantha Brummer, Mrs. & Mrs. area (by carefully running a craft knife through each row to remove the remaining pieces), but more impor- tantly, we noticed that the cardboard "residue" allowed for an interesting texture that could be played upon. After including the corrugated area within their recycle signs, students were given the option to add color with pastels, paint, or to leave it as is. Having recently completed a unit on block printing, my students were familiar with figure-ground relation- ships. This concept needs to be intro- duced or reviewed prior to experimen- ting and engaging in this project. Generating Ideas As I researched artists who work with cardboard, I decided to give students three choices for approaching this new media. Related artists were pro- vided for each option. Option 1: Straight-Up Cardboard Students choosing this option work in the same way as creating a block print, using the single-wall cardboard and corrugated layer to create their images. This can be done by abstract - ing the subject of the composition into positive and negative relationships, and can be achieved with or without the assistance of Adobe Photoshop, depending on individual needs. Utilizing technology is a great way to help struggling students obtain a desired outcome while maintaining artistic integrity with original imag- ery. Once the student has the subject finalized, it can be transferred onto the cardboard with vine charcoal, pas- tel, or an HB pencil, then carved with a clean or textured corrugated area. Related artists to research and inspire imagery include Banksy, Shepard Fairey, and Giles Oldershaw. Option 2: Mixed Media Students can paint, draw, or use a com- bination of both on the cardboard in addition to including corrugated areas. They can work with figure-ground relationships and enhance their work with other media. We found that cardboard can be worked upon with pastels, charcoal, and graphite, with or without a coat of gesso. Paint works well too, as long as the water is used conservatively and the cardboard is weighted down during drying to avoid curling. Related artists include Sara Riches and Florian Nicolle. Option 3: Bas-Relief In addition to working with figure- ground relationships and other media, students can enhance their work with layering and texture. This provides a challenge with a complex prompt, as it introduces the possibilities of light, shadow, and added textures. Related artists include Ali Golzad, Chris Gilmore, and Scott Fife. Embracing Limitations This unit was one of trial and error, happy accidents, and discovery. Indeed, embracing our limitations can open the door to creative solutions. Just as we encourage our students to wander outside their comfort zone, a perceived limitation prodded me to do the same. One of the most rewarding things I can do is continue to shift from the role of teacher to one of teacher as learner, working right alongside my students. This breathes new life into my classroom and energizes us all. Monique Dobbelaere is an art teacher at Hilton Head Island High School in Hilton Head, South Carolina. Monique.dob- belaere @ N A T I O N A L S T A N D A R D Creating: Conceiving and developing new artistic ideas and work. W E B L I N K cardboard-art-and-sculptures/ Little did I know that this alternative surface would engage students and provide various learning opportunities, all while giving cardboard another life.

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