Monday, March 30, 2020

Color Wheel Photo Challenge

Hi Everyone!

This week, I want to offer our students a colorful art challenge.  A friend of mine from graduate school posted this lesson on her social media and inspired me to try it with the Prescott artists.  After looking up the project, I found this link about an artist who does something similar with objects found on the beach.  Students could easily do this at home without using any art supplies!  Please share these photos and links with our Prescott artists, and, if they try the challenge, share a photo of their color wheel.  You can share by uploading to Artsonia with our school's code:  WCCP-WSTF or you can e-mail the photo to me at:  Remember that art is a great way to relieve some of the stress we are all feeling!

Inspirational Artist:
Lesson Plan:
If uploading to Artsonia:  Project Name:  Found Object Color Wheel

Charlie and Xander M. Cleaned out their mom's "junk drawer" and made this great example!

Friday, March 27, 2020

Distance Learning For March 30- April 3

I shared these assignments with classroom teachers, but I wanted to post them here too.  I know we have so many websites to update and to keep track of... This coming week, I hope to have more students upload work to Artsonia or to send me images of their work.  I am sure there are lots of masterpieces out there!

First Grade: Like last week, do what you can!  I would love to see what they make.  Upload it to Artsonia or email it to me if they have some finished work! This week's country is...

Rainforest Lesson Plan:

Third Grade:  Use my blog directions to practice drawing the city skyline and to learn more about Chicago’s skyscrapers.  You can be creative with what type of project you do if you have your own ideas.  If not, just follow my directions! Be sure to send me work to see. I loved Mateo’s and Scarlet’s work last week!  

Fourth Grade:  Continue to study two-point perspective this week!  Here are some links to lessons you can practice.  Choose at least one that you want to complete and upload or send me a photo!  I know this is tricky, but the more you practice, the more it will make sense.

Need something more simple?  
Here is a video that shows how to draw a rubix cube!

Middle School Assignments are on Google Classroom!

Skyline Stars: Drawing the Chicago Skyline

Drawn by Yalexi M. (Grade 5) when she was in the 3rd grade!

When I first moved to Chicago, I noticed that artwork showing the city was very popular.  Chicagoans are proud of their city, and with reason!  

Chicago is famous for its architecture and especially for its skyscrapers.  In this project, you will learn to draw the skyline by focusing on some of our skyline's stars:  distinctive buildings known worldwide.  

Let's start with a drawing paper turned so that it is WIDE, and let's use crayons.  Don't color anything.  Just draw with lines!
From L to R:  John Hancock, Aon, Trump, Willis

These buildings are some of Chicago's tallest buildings, and they are easy to spot in the skyline.  Your drawing should begin with these.  Notice the Willis Tower (AKA Sears Tower) is still the tallest in Chicago.  It can be drawn with a black crayon and has a shape kind of like stair steps towards the top, and it is topped with 2 spires.  Draw it towards the left side of your paper.  

The Aon Building is near the Willis Tower in the loop, so I drew it next.  I made it look like a long, skinny rectangle with stripes that go up and down.  

The Trump Tower can be found near the center of the skyline.  It is blue, and the steps on each side alternate as you move towards the top spire.  I add horizontal lines as rows of windows.  When my students "boo" this building (for reasons I will not mention), I remind them that Adrian Smith, the architect who designed the building, deserves credit for the beauty of the building. 😇

Finally, the Hancock Tower has the shape of a long trapezoid.  It was made more narrow at the top to make it seem taller.  I draw a X pattern down the building, and I add two spires.
Start with the "Skyline Stars"
Next, I add some buildings I find interesting.  The ones I ususally add are The "Diamond Building", which is actually called the Crain Communications Building, is near the Aon and Willis Towers, so I usually add it in front of or next to those.  Then, I add the Navy Pier Ferris Wheel on the right hand side of my paper.  Between the Trump Tower (Adrian Smith) and the Hancock Tower, I add the 900 N. Michigan Building.  Even though this building is not as tall as the others, the top looks like a castle with 4 spires.  It is easy to see in the skyline.  Here are photos of these landmarks.  Try adding them (or other buildings you like) next!

Add other buildings you find interesting!

"Diamond Building"

Navy Pier Ferris Wheel
900 N Michigan Building

After adding these, the other steps are simply adding details!  I added Millennium Park by drawing "The Bean" and some trees around the base of the Willis Tower.  I added Lake Shore Drive and some traffic next to that, and I added the waves of Lake Michigan in the front.  It is fun to put stars in the sky, windows and lights on the buildings, and boats in the water.

I added a park and a street in front.
I added lights, stars, and boats!

You could stop here, or you could add more COLOR!  I added color with watercolor paints.  This is fun because the wax from the crayons shows through the paint as a resist.  If you don't have watercolors at home, you can use washable markers!  Just draw lines where you want to paint, and then paint over the lines with a paintbrush and water.  

In class, we learn fun facts about the buildings as we go along.  I added links to the building names in these directions, just in case you want to learn some facts about Chicago's amazing architecture.  Other extensions for this project are limitless!  Some that we have done in class include:

To turn in work, copy this code:  WCCP-WSTF

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Prescott Artists Working From Home


I miss seeing everyone, and I hope you are all healthy and doing well.  I have been corresponding with many of you via e-mail, google classroom, and Artsonia, and I am so impressed with the art that our students are making on their own at home.  I wanted to post some especially interesting work, and I hope it encourages more of you to share with me what you have been making at home.  Here are some recent Prescott masterpieces:

Stella B, Grade 7 Inspired by Cezanne's Still Life Paintings
I created my desk on a normal day. If you were to go into my room on a normal day this is what you would see. I chose this art piece because it was simple but had a meaning. The meaning of this piece was to show something, and that is what I did with my piece. 
I created it by making a rough sketch first using a regular pencil. After that I cleaned up the lines and then outlined them. I purposefully made the lines a bit messy because that shows a little about me: Creative, messy, and busy. Those are 3 things I put into this simple drawing. Also I put both of my cats in it as well, displaying their personalities. The one on the chair likes to be left alone and can be feisty. The one on the table is sneaky and energetic, and is always zooming down the halls when we are sleeping.

Ruby D, Grade 7:  Inspired by Brilliant Information Overload Pop Head, by Douglas Coupland
The painting that I found was actually a black and white photograph but with colorful paint covering the face. This inspired me to create a drawing showing someone’s mind or the inside vs. outside emotions. My drawing shows someone who has a dark aesthetic on the outside but their face (covered up, like the original painting) shows them as a person only from the inside. 

Aden P, Grade 7:  Inspired by Anthony Poon’s Black and White
I chose the art piece because out of the art I found, the optical illusion art was what I liked most. When I was looking through them, one caught my eye as it was simple yet still an optical illusion. The ones I usually see are complicated and very precise. I also liked that it was two dimensional and was the classic black and white.
I created a two dimensional square painting that looked similar to the optical illusion but had its own twist. My lines weren’t as straight, but that is what gives it character. I liked that about it because the original seemed a little too accurate and not very human-made. Mine you can tell it is, as it is not perfect.
I created it using a piece of foam, scissors, a paint pen, and a ruler. I first cut the piece of foam into a square using the scissors and the ruler. I then created 9 square sections on the
piece of foam and then another four inside that using the paint pen and ruler. In the four corner sections I free-handedly created boxes that got smaller and smaller. And then, I finally created larger boxes using the edge of the foam into the center boxes. In the picture you will see that the lines are uneven because the paint pen was barely showing up and also sometimes leaking onto the foam.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Enter the 2020 Prescott Art Show!

Each year,  Prescott's art show is a big event.  We have had shows at local restaurants, libraries and galleries.  In the past few years, we have taken over the second floor of Prescott to create our own on-site gallery.  This year's theme for our student show will be IDENTITY.  Students have been talking about identity in their homerooms, and we have worked on projects in class that tie in with this theme.  All students in grades 7 and 8, and students in Ms. Hall's 6th grade, chose between three mandatory projects to complete for this year's show.  

I would like to take this opportunity to invite ALL Prescott artists to create and enter work.  Although these entries would be optional, it would be a valuable learning experience while we are all away from school.  Participation in this project and event would engage your student artist in the four artistic processes central to the National Core Art Standards.  It is a memorable way for students to make connections between school subjects and a positive way to practice some of our SEL goals as a school.  

How to Participate:

1.  Begin by brainstorming.  Identity is a broad theme, and it is wise to narrow it down.  What aspect of identity would be fun or interesting to focus on?  The 6-8th graders began with some brainstorming activities similar to these: 

2.  Complete One of the Identity-Themed Projects From This List:  Sometimes students feel more confident completing a project with steps and guidelines.  Here are some projects they could complete and submit for the art show.  The first two projects were options for the 6-8th graders, and the others are projects that I found online that work with the theme.
Wonder-Inspired Portrait

Younger Artists:  Although any of these activities can be modified for our K-5 students, I suggest this project for the younger crowd:
3-D Portrait:  Make a Paper Cube or find a box around the house.  On each side of the cube or box, create original artwork that shows a different side of your personality!  Use any art supplies you have at home, and get creative!  We will stack these boxes as a 3-D display in the art show.  They can be ANY size!  

3.  Create an ORIGINAL composition.  Many students decided to take the theme and make it personal.  They used their brainstorming activities to inspire a unique composition and created a work of art as a response.  This is a great challenge for more confident students who don't feel like they need the structure of the projects listed above on #2.  It is important to have a plan and to make some preliminary sketches, so I had these students draw and describe their work in a proposal.   The artwork for this challenge could be completed in ANY art medium!  The more diverse the ideas, the more interesting the art show will be.   Sample Proposal Sheet

When is the Art Show?

Artwork is Due FRIDAY, MAY 1!  Have students bring in any submissions by the end of the school day on May 1.  They should deliver them to me in the art room.

I had planned to propose that the art show would be on MAY 8th.  We will have to re-evaluate the date and the procedure for school events, but I will have the work on display even if it turns out we cannot host big events due to germs.  I will keep you updated as we learn more about CPS plans and Prescott plans in the coming weeks.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Distance Learning Assignments for Prescott Art Classes

Hello from North Carolina!  I am helping my niece with her distance learning assignments and reading google classroom assignments from grade 7 today!  I just created folders on Artsonia for students in classes 102, 306 and 307 where they can upload any work they complete while we are all working from home.  Let me know if you have any trouble uploading the work.  Just in case you don't have the assignments, or just in case you are looking for further arts enrichment for your students, I wanted to attach the assignments here on my blog.  Contact me if I can help in ANY way.  Stay Healthy!

1st Grade (Kirshner)
Art Around the World
Week 1: The Art of IRELAND
Videos for Inspiration:
The Digital Book of Kells is a series of stop-motion animations, made by children, explaining the history of the Book of Kells.

Art Lesson Ideas:

Week 2: The Art of INDIA
Videos for Inspiration:
Art Lesson Ideas:
My Blog

3rd Grade (Stefan)
The Art of Chicago
Week 1: The Chicago Skyline and Architecture:
Read about Chicago’s amazing buildings, and choose one that inspires you.  Draw or sculpt the building using any available art supplies you have around the house.  

Design your own building!

Week 2:  The Art Institute of Chicago:  Permanent Collection
Create artwork based on a famous work of art in the Art Institute.  Use their website or the internet to find one, or create one of the following:
The Old Guitarist

4 (Sopheia)
The Renaissance
Week 1: One-Point Perspective
Tutorial Video
Draw or Paint a Street Scene!
Make Shapes 3-D!

Week 2: Two-Point Perspective
Practice the basics with this video.
Design a Treehouse!
Tutorial Video

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Building Your Portfolio From Home

As we face some time away from school,  I want you to share your artwork with me so I can keep track of your progress.  For those of you who don't already know, each student at Prescott has an online art portfolio through Artsonia, the world's largest gallery of student artwork. All of your work from every year at Prescott is in your portfolio.  Some of you have 8 years of artwork in your portfolio!

Artsonia's newest feature is classroom mode.  Students are now able to upload artwork themselves, which makes it possible for you to "turn in" work from home.  We will use this feature during our time away from school to upload new student masterpieces.

In addition to adding artwork, you will be able to type your artist statements and reflections in your account.  As you write about your art, you are are making connections and responding to the experience of making art and communicating your ideas in more than one way.  This should help you find personal meaning in your artwork.  If you need a guide sheet for writing a reflection, I have included one below.

Please take time to watch the Artsonia videos (links are underlined above) so you can learn how to upload to your account.  If you have any questions about passwords or codes, email me at:

Our school access code is:  WCCP-WSTF
Our QR code is:  

American Sculpture: Martin Puryear

Martin Puryear is a 79 year old sculptor who lives in New York.  He has traveled the world to study art and craft traditions, and he has rec...