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Re: First days- HS Art I (sorry, but long)


Date: Thu Jul 22 2004 - 07:42:01 PDT

I do a "doodle" exercise, too. This is how I do it: I give everyone a piece of paper and ask them to use their own drawing utensil.I explain that I am going to read a series of directions that each student should follow. I tell them NOT to look at their neighbor's drawing, to listen carefully and do exactly what the directions say to do . I can repeat a direction as many times as they need it but I cannot answer questions like ,"what does that mean?" or "what am I supposed to do".Then while the class is silent, I read a series of directions outloud to the class, things like- "make a curve", "add three circles", "add 4 lines that are all based on the first line", add radiating lines to the circles", etc., usually I read 10 different directions. (I make them up using art related words like radiating, curve, thick, graduated, dashes, etc.) The kids feel uneasy, they feel like it is a test, they don't really know what is expected of them, they are afraid that they will "do it wrong", etc. but I keep encouraging
them to just do what they think they "should" do. Once everyone is finished- they hang their drawings up on the board and we take a few minutes to look at them.I ask questions about "what similarities do you see?" "how are they different?" "what are they pictures of?" etc.; we analyze them a little. I then explain that this is an analogy of what artmaking is--- each artist in my class will hear the same things, see the same things, listen to the same directions, etc.the same information will go into their brains yet each person will process it in their own way and will create something a little different---a different interpretation of the assignments.All products will be related and will solve the same problems yet will be individual and unique- this is what art is!I tell them that this is what I expect to happen with each artmaking exercise...that they will have a set of guidelines and criteria to meet, yet every student's work will (should) be unique and correct.Many times, I have the kids use their "doo
dle" (the image they ended up with while following the directions and use it as a motif. We have done many things with this....modified it, colored it, printed it, stamped it, turned it into a relief, a 3-D sculpture,etc. the idea being that almost anything can be used as a beginning for an artwork. This leads us into "where do ideas come from" and how to develop an artwork from an abstract concept. This is a great focusing activity and a good way to put everyone on the a level playing field to begin with. The "talented" kids have no advantage over the "untalented".Somewhere, I have a list of 20 words that describe ways to change/modify an image...can't find it on the internet. I have hardcopy of these words out in my studio...will post them later.Many times we use this list of words to make this original "doodle" into an artwork. Maybe you all will think of cooler things to do with this idea.Marcia H in ILآy˫+.n+ǝZf/v{.n+zwZnV隊[h{ǝM_l/