Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Facing middle school students

Wow, it's been a hectic month! Finally over my virus from hell (down a total of 2 entire weeks) and then the subsequent avalanche of things to do that inevitably happens when you haven't been able to do anything for 2 weeks. Today is my first day back in the studio, at last! As soon as I am done with this post...

One recent adventure to note- my son asked me if I would come and speak to his class about my artwork for his "Science Day" last Friday. Of course, I said yes- who could resist their child actually wanting them to come to their school and talk about their work! I certainly was very flattered.

However, this turned into a much larger deal than I originally thought. I received an email from the middle school coordinator asking if there was anything they could do to help me with my "demonstration". I emailed back- "so how long is this demonstration again?". She replies that I will have 40 minutes per grade and that it also would be great if I had a student project as well. Let me remind you that this is happening on Wednesday and the demonstration is Friday... AH! I had a good 45 minutes of complete and total panic before I figured out what I would do.

I decided that I would bring in some finished work plus a bunch of my materials and talk for only 15 minutes. Then I would have the students all make mini-collages using the materials I used for the collages in my show last Spring: bark, leaves and old encyclopedia images. I made my son go out and help me collect over 200 pieces of bark and an entire bag of leaves the next evening.

The demonstration seemed to be a hit! Almost all of the students were interested in my work (along with some teachers) and really got into making the collages. success! I had offered to them that if they wanted, I would take their projects home and put a wax coating on plus and wire backing so they could hang them. You can guess what I spent my weekend doing... waxing and mounting probably around 170 collages.

I have to say- I was very impressed with the student's enthusiasm and creativity. I really had no idea if they would be interested or not, and it became quite a pleasure to finish their projects for them. Though, if I ever do this again, I need to find a way that doesn't add hours and hours of extra work for me in the end.

Happy ending all in all- I was extremely nervous about presenting and it went very well. Now back into the studio to get some of my own work done!

1 comment:

Lisa said...

Very creative and on-your-toes planning. Keep up the good work.