Thursday, September 29, 2011


student collage compositions

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

fall trees


I think that I shall never see

A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest

Against the sweet earth's flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,

And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in summer wear

A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;

Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,

But only God can make a tree.

Joyce Kilmer, 1886-1918

Fall trees are a great way to bring a fall day inside. Collect different leaves from different types of trees so that the kids can touch and inspect up close. Use torn brown construction paper to form strong trees and branches on a large white piece of construction paper, glue down with a glue stick and accent with thin yellow torn pieces. Give kids a few pieces of tissue paper about 5x6 and let the kids tear small leaf like shapes but not too small. Using a small brush with a small amount of glue on a plate or in a little dish, show your students how to brush a little on the paper where they want to place the leaves and gently place the thin tissue paper on the glue, avoid pressing to hard because the tissue will want to stick to their fingers and not the paper. Remember....some leaves have already fallen.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

goodbye and hello

Who knew that dropping off the edge of the earth could be so easy, it was the staying afloat that was hard, for me 2010 was a year of dizziness, nausea, ointment and band-aids. I'd have to say it is not a place to revisit often but rather a thing to pack up in a small box and take out years from now when all you can remember is the good things. I really had no problem saying......goodbye.

I feel with certainty that 2011 will be a year of mending and transformation. I am not looking for a clean slate but a new beginning......hello.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

a useful tool

This project was inspired by the fingerprint portraits of Chuck Close. I used owl pictures because it was fun to look up fun facts about owls to share with my students as they were working on the project. I recommend using a washable ink pad for ease of clean-up. After the first class, I had to ask the students to limit finger usage because before I knew it all five fingers were invited to the party, then of course the whole hand was completely covered in ink in a blink of an eye (and you know the face comes next). This is a great exercise in getting students to look at the lights and the darks of the photo.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

whooooo whooooo

Straight from the cute forest. First graders loved drawing this owl together adding their own touches of character to their owls. We used pastels and watercolors to add a splashes of color. Big Heads, little bodies, and enormous eyes are just a part of their artistic expression at this age, I just simply love them, oh so charming!

Friday, January 8, 2010


"Fear" is just a four letter word yet it can paralyze you dead in your tracks. Last September, I had gone in search for my creative spirit as if it was something lost, and what I found was that I paralyze myself whenever I start a new project. As in this blog. As in an art business. As in doing what I love most.....making art.

For the past few months, I immersed myself in a several creative books, took a trip or two to the museum, started a new sketchbook, and spent countless hours of visiting many creative blogs and websites. I started a habit of writing a daily 10 item list (today's list) "10 creative experiences I would like to try this year".....1. make a handmade book-2. write and illustrate a short graphic story-3. lino-cut printing-4. hand built small ceramic pieces-5. paint a mural in my home-6. screen printing-7. create a website-8. sew a large modern quilt for my bed-9. knit a vest-10. make a Louise Nevelson like garden gate.

A hard thing to accept is the fact that I do this to myself.

I began to think about a task I do every year with abandoned fear. I garden. I have marginal success and yet I get so excited every spring. I read and reread my garden books and magazines. I browse through catalogs. I watch landscaping shows. I sketch and plan the plants I would love to add to my small, garden space. I buy new plants, I water and browse my garden almost on a daily basis, I am hopeful. I look for new growth and I am excited for small signs of success. I envision a garden that is lush and somewhat overgrown where plants mix and mingle. I look at my garden through rose-colored glasses. I am patient. I am content. I have no fear and no inhibitions, so why can't I apply this philosophy to the thing I love the most? Why am I so fearful of failing or not finishing something I haven't even started? So here it is, a proclamation, "I am acknowledging you FEAR and I am telling you to go away because you are no longer welcome here, you need to go feed on someone else for I am no longer your tasty morsel!" (sound of door slamming).

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

a fresh new start

A blog that I frequent, Hula Seventy mentions that 2010 is like a new box of crayons. I got to thinking... that was such a great analogy! I am like a new box of crayons and 2010 holds new possibilities for new pictures and new projects. I love the idea of being a fresh box of new colors. I have always loved opening a new box, touching the tips of new colors, the smell, and that bit of hesitation when you use that first crayon. I am excited for 2010!


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