Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Prayer Flags

 prayer flag # 18 for LIGHT
Prayer Flag 18: for Light. Light was one of my words for 2011 was Light. Light of heart. Sharing the light...

Here's a little tutorial on this prayer flag. I love stencils, and use them in lots of ways in my work. 
one  three
four  five
The markers for fabric are really easy to use.
Artist Cellar has a number of new and very cool stencils. I especially love the cathedral series. Oh, I love the steam punk series too!
prayer flags  prayer flags

I used the stencils with acrylic paint on this prayer flag for my friend Jill. I used the traditional japanese stencils for hers. She loves blue and white!
prayer flags  prayer flags prayer flags
Go over to the Prayer Flag Project blogspot, and check out the wonderful group prayer flag project I recently did with a group of my friends.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Cyber Monday Shopping!

It's Cyber Monday, so they say, and many people are doing their online Holiday Shopping today. I thought I'd do  my part for the economy, and give you some gifty suggestions.

My online JaneVille Etsy shop! Original art, and watercolors, and collages and more!

My new DVD

Learn. My DVD, "from art journaling to art ~ drawing, watercolor and more techniques for the mixed media artist." You can purchase the DVD or an immediate download.  (And then you can post your work on the flickr group and post your work!--I mean, tell the friend who you are buying this for to post their work...)

Lyric Kinard's DVD "Bead it Like You Mean it". Remember I was inspired by it here, and reviewed it here.

Jill Berry's new book Personal Geographies

Gloria Hansen is offering a special price on her book Digital Essentials.

cereal box paper dolls from January's adventure in Palm Springs 
Giggle. A gift certificate for one of Carla Sonheim's online classes. (I'll be buying certificates for certain friends of mine for Cereal Box Paper Dolls class.)  

Download 86 pages of creative projects by some of your fave artists from 

I'm sure you'll find a gift idea in there somewhere.

Moldable foam stamp kits (with directions) from Traci Bunkers (Traci's tutorial is here.)

Books. Check out my faves and recommendations on My Book Shelf 

shopping spree 
Pretty things. I love this pewter bird necklace, and think it's a great gift. (Etsy)

As I was researching for this post, I bought this scarf (that's not me in the photo--haven't received it yet), from one of my favorite felters. There's more at FeltFieltroFilc   (Etsy)

 shopping spree
My favorite purse (and they make wallets too.)

I love these felted rocks from Delica. She makes necklaces too. (Etsy)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Around the house ~My Studio ~ Virtual Tour

Daniela Stout and me at Cozy Quilt shop
It's all because of Daniela. Daniela Stout, owner of Cozy Quilt Shop. I've know Daniela, since 2003, when her shop made and donated quilts to the Wildfire Survivors (and I drove my friend Pamela Underwood, who'd lost her home,  to Cozy Quilt, to select a quilt.)
I ran into Daniela at the Long Beach Quilt Festival in July and she asked what type of sewing machine I owned. (A very cheap one.) Fast forward. Cozy Quilt is a Bernina Distributor. I'm now the proud owner of a Bernina 550
my studio
Bernina arrives!
my studio
Bernina demands its own table   
my studio before cleaning!
My studio BEFORE Bernina.

my studio
My studio after cleaning and reorganizing
When I used my old sewing machine, I'd just set it up on my work table, a midst the paint, and glue and whatever I was working on.  It was not treated with respect. The Bernina demanded respect and it's own table. (Not to mention it's quite an investment.) So, my annual (well pretty much) studio cleaning and reorganization begun! I thought you might be interested to see where I work. (It's a small bedroom in my home about 10x12')

my studio
Bookcase and TV
my studio
Glues, gessos and pens

my studio
My studio table is our old kitchen table; set in the center of the room, it looks out  a sliding glass door to our front yard.

my studio
My journals: filled and waiting to be filled

my studio
Wooden drawers from Ikea
my studio
wire curtain 'rod' with clips to hang artwork

and the studio wouldn't be complete without my kitties!
buddy in a box
Buddy, in the studio
The desk in my studio
BeBop, in the studio

Monday, November 21, 2011

A day in the life of an High School Art Teacher

1  1a
I think I may have been a teacher in my former life. When I told husb this, he immediately imagined me in the mid 1800s, in a one room school house in a small community. I added that I was probably the unmarried school marm, that loved the children I taught, like they were my family....
So, maybe this is why I had the need to follow my friend, Susan Avery Clark, around all day as she taught art to High School kids. Here's record of her day.
Pictured above, Susie, at  8:15am, greeting her 20 high school students at the door. (In each class there are 20 or so kids, usually 75% of them are boys.) 

Susie teaches at  Murray High School, a continuation high school, of juniors and seniors in Vista, California (just north of San Diego.) For these students, it's their last chance to graduate. 
(A continuation high school is an alternative to a comprehensive high school primarily for students who are considered at-risk of not graduating at the normal pace. The requirements to graduate are the same but the scheduling is more flexible to allow students to earn their credits at a quicker pace since they are usually behind when they arrive at the continuation high school. Students who attend these schools may include discipline problems, drug users, pregnant teens and teenage mothers.)

Period one: 8:15-9:05
The first period students are quiet, filing in to get their materials. A couple of them appear to sleep or rest with their heads in the arms. The energy is very low.
Susie, cheerful and smiling, asked them as a group, about their recent 3-day weekend. At this point, they mostly mumble. She introduces the lesson (based on illustrator James Christensen's Renaissance figures and creating their own patterns for the costumes on their hand-drawn characters.) She draws and demonstrates the lesson.
5a    14
Susie's demo is on the left, the students interpret it.

Period two: 9:05-9:55
Another 20 kids, slightly more awake, file in, and she repeats the lesson with a new demo.
12a   25
Susie's on the left, a student work on the right.

Period three: 9:55-10:45
Another 20 kids, these are more social with each other, and Susie quiets them so she can be heard. Susie tells me later many are considered homeless, by the state, as they are sharing living quarters with multiple families, or in some cases, the kids can't live with their parents (a restraining order against dad, for example)  and live with a classmates' family.
4  22   22a
another demo, repeating the lesson and principles again. 

Some of the kids get right into it. Many have to be cajoled, because they lack the confidence in their skills. 
10:45-11:05 Break
During the 20 minute break, Susie checks her email for messages and schedule changes or announcements. We go to the teacher's lounge to grab a snack of cheese and crackers. (One needs protein to keep up this pace!)
Meanwhile, the kids are outside and there's a group activity. Susie grabs her camera to get pictures for the yearbook (She's in charge of the yearbook this year.)

Period four: 11:05-11:55
Another group files in. Susie hugs one boy, he's just gotten out of jail. (She and everyone believes he was falsely charged.)
35a   35
The kids are allowed, in this school, to have ipods and wear ear-buds to listen to  music during class. The administration believes the music helps the kids focus. Susie requires the kids to take out their ear-buds when she's giving the lesson, and then, once she turns on classroom music, the kids can put in their ear-buds. It doesn't always work that way..
(Susie's demo drawing on the left.)

Period five: 11:55-12:45
Another group of kids. Susie continues her upbeat, supportive style, respectful of the kids, yet firm when she needs to be. Most of these kids have difficult lives, and she knows it. And they realize that if they are kicked out of this school, or fail, it will be an even harder road ahead.

36a   36ab
Susie's 5th demo on the left.
12:50, Susie checks her email again for messages and announcements. Goes to the teacher's lounge for a quick lunch. Then back to her classroom to clean up, and prepare for the next day's 5 lessons, grade papers, administrative work etc until ~ 3:30, when she heads home.

susie and me
At the end of the day, Susie still looks great and full of energy. I, frankly, am exhausted.
I have huge admiration for Susie. She is a natural-born teacher, who cares deeply about the kids and how they learn. She has a teenage sense of humor, that endears her to the kids (and probably helps keep her sane.) Before Susie taught in public schools, she taught community education art classes and she taught me watercolor back in 1993. I'm proud to call her my friend.
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