SchoolArts Magazine

December 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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36 DECEMBER 2016 SchoolArts M I D D L E S C H O O L I have been perfecting and refining my figure and gesture drawing les- sons for as long as I've been teach- ing middle school because teaching students how to draw people confi- dently will serve them for a lifetime. After completing a unit on figure and movement, it seemed only natural to ask my students to translate those skills into sculpture. We had been drawing from face- less wooden mannequins when I sug- gested to students that it would be fun to create their own gestural human sculptures from plaster bandages. They embraced the idea and got to work cre - ating unique, expressive vignettes. Drawing the Human Body Students began by drawing the human body, focusing on proportion. I introduced gesture drawing and had them practice using foreshortening and drawing action lines, starting at the weight-bearing foot of the model and following the curve of the spine. I rolled paper out over the tables and we used models from the web - site tools/figure-drawing/ projected from my desktop computer onto our white board to practice drawing. I turned off the lights, gave each student a black marker and additional drawing paper, and set the website to change the pose every two minutes. (By con - trolling the settings from my teacher station I was able to choose only models that were fully clothed.) Rachel Wintemberg Sculptures Gestural Eliana, grade eight.

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