SchoolArts Magazine

Summer 2017

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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28 SUMMER 2017 SchoolArts students would love and others would love to look at. In the process, I have reworked most of my labs, but here are a few of my favorites for drawing, design, and painting: Drawing Lab Revamp: Blind Contour with Flare In the past we have done a very simple blind contour. Students never think they "look good," and I acknowledge they lack pizzazz. This year we did two overlapping blind contours and emphasized each with bold opaque shapes. To begin, students adorned their faces with goodies from a bag of props ranging from yarn and string to silly glasses. Once they created their new and improved "crazy faces," they drew their first blind contour. This brought humor and a much-needed fun! These mini-lessons we all should do found their way to the trashcan every time. How could I challenge students to make small works of art that had purpose, and that technically resolved a skill? No doubt, you're familiar with microlabs—color wheels, value scales, blind contours, thumbnails, and all the little assignments that are the oil that keeps the engine going. I set my course to revitalize these old standard exercises into something Previous page: Student work from transparency composition microlab. Below: Student work inspired by Rex Ray from intensity scale microlab, Pleasant Grove High School. boost to the range of line on their faces. Next, we discussed pattern and filled in the spaces with a limited pal- ette of water-based markers. Students loved the exercise and felt great pride in their finished product. Reinvention of the Intensity Scale for Painting In the past we have done a standard intensity scale with six to eight boxes using complementary colors. This is one of my favorite skills to teach because it creates beautiful rich colors, but unfortunately the product is boring and uninspired. This time when my students began their color scheme masterworks, I requested that they take their left - over paint and use it on a large sheet of paper. They added to this paper each day as I introduced small tech - I set m ourse to revitalize these old standard exercises into something students would love and others would love to look at.

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