I recently found a great website ipadartroom.com. This teacher is amazing and encourages using an Ipad as an art making tool no more precious than a crayon. I’ve torn through most of her lessons. You want to respect your art materials and maybe an Ipad more since it’s pricey….BUT… At least for me it’s been used too preciously and therefore not enough. For me personally this has helped with artist block. What I’ve learned is that having the integrated camera makes drawing more spontaneous. I can snap a pic and use it as a starting point by tracing. Layers make experimenting easy. I can try all sorts of things ie: colors,tracing with out starting all over again. To be able to undo and delete is liberating. I believe this will be as great with kids that think they can’t make art as it’s been for me. I’ve been obsessed with drawing on the thing. I’ve been using the free Adobe draw app.
This week I put the totem together in the garden. It’s cold now and the garden is covered in leaves and we can’t take kids outside. It does look great though. I put the sections together with landscape adhesive and shimmed it level as I added parts. I have never never used construction adhesive to join this kind of thing so it will be interesting to see how it holds up. In the spring it will get grouted between the parts or taken apart if the adhesive fails and mortared together.
We are getting close to the final step of grouting
We are topping it off with two doves. The wires are for attaching tyvek feathers
My steady job for the last 4 years has been making art with medically fragile technology dependent children and staff at Bancroft Voorhees NJ. These children are in wheelchairs and hooked to machines that beep and flash lights. All are non verbal and few can use their hands. When you take the time to be in the moment with them they do show joy. ….a good deal of joy! The totem project is a way to celebrate the joys of children that passed recently. This project is administered by yanjep.org.
We started by making handmade tiles of images that reminded the staff of the things that gave these children joy. It was such a gift for me to hear all the stories. Some teachers and staff have known these kids since preschool. The kids of course can’t make these themselves. I am the “art facilitator”for the kids and also the staff. These children respond to touch and sound mostly. When they can make choices in a way I can understand I go with it. I have a familiarity with the way they communicate and do the best I can to hear them. Many smile hearing my voice and so many react to touching materials. Touch is such a big part of their experiencing the world and a sense we often neglect. I’ve found that a good deal of patience and just being there and present goes a long way with these particular kids.
tomorow they come out of the kiln
This is how Chris and I look together. Chris is a special second grader I had the privilege to meet last school year. He got all the important bits right..the earrings,the mop of curls on the top of my head and the big grin. I adore this drawing.
I saw Jyair writing with his little stub of a pencil and said it would make a great earring. He said no way and I said if you trade it for a big pencil I will come in tomorrow with pencil earrings. Silly boy didn’t believe me!
Tahid was a 2nd grader at Grace Norton Rodgers School. As he said it was a dream come true for all of us. We had a great time making our mural for the front of the school