My essay has been published at the University of Connecticut’s Special Collections blog.
Our school art program culminates in an end-of-year project called the Collaborative Art Piece. Each class works together to create a piece of art that goes on auction at our school’s spring fundraiser. The only requirement is that all students have a hand in the process. This is piece we made for my daughter’s fifth grade class.
You’ve seen this, the original by Shepard Fairey, no doubt.
I took that image, traced it roughly onto a 24×36″ canvas and cut it into a 6×7 grid. At school each kid got a rectangle (there are 32 kids in the class, each kid did at least one, a couple did a few) without knowing what the source image was and filled in their rectangle(s) with pieces of torn magazine paper. All the color choices were theirs, I only marked the outlined sections as warm color, cool color, and dark or light skin tone. We did the whole thing in about an hour, at home I assembled and framed the final piece before returning it to class. We were very pleased with the results.
The piece went on auction yesterday and was purchased for $1400 (the total raised from all 22 classes was just short of $9000). That money will go to the PTA and back into the art program.
Remember that hedgehog story?
I turned it into a miniature book for my daughter to take on a sleep-away camp. It’s printed on an inkjet printer on regular copy paper, hand bound with needle and thread. It has a tiny cover, a tiny spine, and tiny little endpapers. Look how tiny it is.
It’s even got a tiny little ISBN.
More than I wish I could see a hedgehog reading this, I wish I could hand you a copy of this little book. I can’t, but you can download it to your Kindle.
The #WeNeedDiverseBooks discussion was feeling heavy yesterday so I made this for fun.
High-res version over at my Flickr.
Did one today. It’s about trees.
I thought briefly of doing to my story file what I did to this blog. That is, wiping it clean and starting over.
But I know I never could. Although a majority of these stories exist as only a quick sketch and a single line (or single word, in some cases), they are in my mind pretty complete worlds.
I do wish I had these in a sketchbook or journal instead of in two filing cabinets worth of loose leaf and scrap paper, though.