Friday, May 8, 2015

Art Teacher Still Life (Clean Up Beauty)



 I guess I see beauty in most things. Even clean up. We spend time at the end of Art Club with everyone helping clean up, but I do a second round at home with brushes and supplies that might be wrecked if not cleaned completely. (Let's just say a first-grader's idea of clean might not be the same as mine…)







These are some thrifted cookie cutters (Value Village) we used to add a printed layer to this year's freestyle painting we did on cardboard. (Here are some older examples. We use up the paint on our pallets after painting our annual paper mache- so much fun to paint just for the joy of painting!)



Yes, I lined up the paint-stained sponge bits on the stripes of the towel to dry. Like houses on little lots and parallel roads.


 I cut open the tube acrylics to scrape out every last bit of paint. I put warm colors in one squeeze bottle, cool in another, Black and white together because the white on a kid's pallet always has some color mixed in. We'll use the mixed paints on future projects where the marbling of colors is a plus.


 I don't save the dried bits from the lids, but I couldn't just throw them away without a photo.  Or two.





I remind my students all the time to see like an artist. Look for line, shape, space, texture, color, form, and value. Pattern and repetition. Light and shadow and contrast and all that. The world (even clean up!) is full of visual treasures we don't want to miss.


Make it a Wonderful Day!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Oil Pastel Vases, Bowls, and Bottles


We're nearing the end of Art Club for the year, and I'm way behind on posting their beautiful work. 



 We did a guided practice drawing together, starting with drawing a cylinder and then shaping it into an imagined vase, bottle, or bowl.  Vibrant oil pastels were blended with a brush and turpenoid to create a painterly result on our final paper.








(This artist really got into the blending…) :D






I alternated black and white for the thin matting, which added a bit of interest to the  display.









This project was a good example of starting with a clear framework that included some skill-building. But there was also room for lots of individual artistic decisions. (How will I shape my vase? Where is the imaginary light source? Warm or cool colors for the vase? Should I add details like stripes in the background?) Our young artists were very happy with the results, and so was I.


Make it a Wonderful Day!


Monday, April 6, 2015

Bedouin Textiles






We enjoyed another exhibit at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles. I'm always impressed with beautiful objects that also serve practical purposes. In this case, Bedouin nomadic tents, rugs, cushions, clothing, along with camel ornamentation and saddlebags.


The show is just a small portion of the collection amassed by Joy and Robert Hilden.




 The pieces on display were made from the 1960s through the 1990s. The textiles are made from a variety of materials: cotton, sheepswool, goat hair, camel hair, and include synthetic yarns in the newest pieces.







Joy Hilden wrote a book in 2010 about their collection and her research. As cultures disappear, it's important for the artistic and creative arts of peoples to be preserved and shared.  There is no substitute for interacting with cultures firsthand, but seeing this collection is a small glimpse into the weaving done by the Bedouin women. And Joy's book,  Bedouin Weaving of Saudi Arabia and It's Neighbors is available in the museum store and online.


Make it a Wonderful Day!


Saturday, April 4, 2015

Easter Table is Set...













The table is set for tomorrow's family Easter Brunch. Now it's time to get cooking...

 Happy Easter!


Friday, April 3, 2015

Kawandi Adventure: Quilts by Margaret Fabrizio



We visited this show of beautiful quilts at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles. 

















All so beautiful! And then something really fun happened- as we drove away from the museum, I saw a woman dressed in an artful way, and I recognized her from a short video of Margaret that was included in her show.

I had Dave stop the car so I could get out and tell her how much I enjoyed her quilts. (No photo of our meeting- I'd left my camera in the car and Dave had driven off to get gas.)


We walked back to the museum together, along with the two gentlemen who were with her. We chatted about art and quilts.

 I found out that it was Margaret's 75th birthday that day- so great to see all of this creative energy and beautiful current work. That inspires me.




Her quilts appeal to me on so many levels. I love the connection to the Indian quilting tradition. I love the vibrant, saturated colors. I love the spontaneous, seemingly haphazard compositions. The textures created by the rows and rows of hand stitching. And the use of every scrap and the attention that brings to the beauty around us, even in the bits others might just throw away.


Make it a Wonderful Day!