SchoolArts Magazine

December 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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34 DECEMBER 2017 SchoolArts cautious with the paint and with their mark-making. But when they pull the first successful print, they can't wait to wash the plate and prepare the next print. Students wash and dry the plate as they work and at the end of the printmaking session to prepare the studio for the next set of artists. Sharing Our HeARTs Students each select one of their prints to be used in a collaborative collage. They understand that it will be altered. I ask them to cut the printed paper into quarters, without cutting out the heart. They look at me in shock—it's unusual for us to take our work apart like this! Then they trade. They keep one piece of their heart and trade the other three to reconstruct a heart shape. For example, they trade the upper-right of the heart with another upper-right piece from another artist. Every student will have three contributions from other artists for the new work. They also have to make some decisions: do they E L E M E N T A R Y I created the following unit with an emphasis on collaboration. Stu- dents are asked to create three heart m onoprints. They choose one print, cut it into quarters, keep one piece of their heart, and trade the other three with their peers to reconstruct a heart shape. They can gift the two unused prints to family and friends. No Chairs I launch this unit by removing all the chairs from the tables in my artroom. Students walk in and are immediately curious: "What is she up to?" I remove the chairs to enable students to move freely around the table as they work on this collaborative monoprinting project. Typically, four students per table, some - times six, will need to reach for colors a s they work. Each spot is marked by a registered rectangle on the table so each artist knows where to place the printing plate and where to place the paper. Heart Artists First, I showcase work by Jim Dine and Peter Max—two artists who paint hearts and use color freely. Max paints with a "loaded brush," which is the technique I encourage students to use for this process. Because we are working with tempera, which dries quickly, students who use just a little Encouraging students to use color, making marks with the paint and overlapping color creates an excited atmosphere in the studio. Samantha Melvin SHARING OUR paint and work tenta- tively will not print successfully—instead, the brush needs to be loaded with color, and students need to paint with generous strokes so that by the time they are ready to print, the colors are still wet enough to transfer to the paper. Print-Ready Hearts I set up a station with paper and pen- cils. After students prepare their plate f or printing, they go to the station, write their name on the back of the paper, and return with it to their table. With their names facing up, they lay the paper on top of the plate, register - ing the corners with the marks on the t able. The 8 x 10" (20 x 25 cm) plate sits inside the marked area for the 9 x 12" (23 x 30 cm) white paper. You might get this question: "Is my heart right?" Hearts can be long, short, fat, skinny—there's no defined heart shape. And they don't have to be red. Encouraging students to use color, make marks with the paint and overlap color creates an exciting atmosphere in the studio. For students who need additional assistance, I draw a heart shape on the paper under the printing plate, which allows them to trace the heart but still have artistic freedom. Pulling a Print Students know in advance that they have time to make three prints. The first one is always tentative as they are CONTINUED ON PAGE 39. heARTs

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