Archive for the ‘Visual Arts’ Category


Metalsmith Studio

December 13, 2019

SeDoMoCha Middle School

After a little construction and many years of running an after school program art teacher Bobbi Tardif is excited to have a space designated for metalwork in the SeDoMoCha Middle School. Tardif is the 2019 Piscataquis County Teacher of Year.

After two years of planning and construction the studio opened at the start of the school year. Some Title IV funds were used to purchase supplies to start the program. In addition the funding came from grants and donations. Bobbi estimates that $15,000 has gone into the new space. “It’s been a lot of work but I’m so happy and impressed by the support we have gotten from the community and community businesses, it couldn’t be done without them,” she said.

You can READ about the entire project in the Piscataquis Observer article written by Stuart Hedstrom, December 6, 2019.


The Art of Education

December 9, 2019

Photo booth in the classroom

Informative blog post put out by The Art of Education. Seven Reasons You Need a Photo Booth in the Art Room. A Lightbox is one and a studio photo setup is another. The ARTICLE expands on these two topics providing you with useful information.

The Art of Ed University provides resources in a variety of ways. Check out the WEBSITE to learn more.


Painting Program

December 8, 2019

Birth to old age, Stonehouse


Light Up the World

December 3, 2019

Local workshops

On Saturday morning I arrived at the library in my town with a car full of materials to make lanterns. Basket reeds, telephone wire, tiny LED lights, industrial size coffee filters, white glue, blow dryers, brushes and containers to hold the water downed glue. I learned how to make lanterns from artist Gowri Savoor while attending the 2017 New Hampshire state arts education conference. I am forever grateful to Julianne Gadoury, New Hampshire State Council on the Arts Education Program Director invited Catherine Ring and myself to attend.

Since that conference Lindsay Pinchbeck, founder and director of Sweet Tree Arts Center in Hope, and I have offered the lantern making workshop several times at the local and state level to all ages and backgrounds of people. This is the type of art making that is inviting to all.

When we’ve provided the workshop it exemplifies the essence of small communities in Maine. Whether it’s at the library, community center, a community event, or an arts focused facility people find joy and success making lanterns.

Kate Smith is involved in the South Berwick Lanternfest that takes place each August. This past summer she helped lead music making with a drum circle and at the end they release the lanterns down the river to honor those who have gone before.  All ages come together for an amazing day. Whether it is small or large communities art making has the power to bring communities together.

The two hour lantern making workshop is enough time to make at least one lantern (two people made 3 in the time allotted) and dry it enough to carry home. The next day the tree lighting on the town common was a chance to lead the processional with Santa following in a town fire truck. Two people returned with their lanterns decorated. I wondered if everyone would return and sure enough my heart was warmed seeing everyone with their lanterns lit waiting at the designated spot.

My takeaways:

  • The arts bring people together in a non-judgmental way and everyone feels good.
  • All ages need and want community based chances to come together.
  • People naturally work across generations to help each other.
  • Many adults don’t make art everyday but jump at the chance to do so and love it.
  • Adults are looking for opportunities to do something engaging side-by-side with children.
  • Having a follow-up chance to use the lanterns collectively is like the glue that is needed in communities.

What I’m curious about is this – what have you noticed or been involved with that includes the arts to bring people together beyond the school – in the community? Please feel free to share in the comment section below. Thanks!


Renaissance Paintings

November 23, 2019

Auto Mechanics 

Photographer Freddy Fabris had always wanted to pay homage to the Renaissance masters with his photos in some way, but he wasn’t sure how until he stumbled upon an automechanic shop in the Midwest. This led to a brilliant series of funny portraits with auto mechanics. You’ll definitely want to share THESE IMAGES with your students.


500 Years of Portraits

November 16, 2019

Females in Western Art

Consider using this resource in your classroom and/or to share.


Casco Bay Japan Exchange Program

November 15, 2019


Greely Middle School art teacher Lynda McCann Olson is traveling to Aomori, Japan on a cultural exchange. Aomori is the same prefecture that Gorham Middle School grades 6-8 students will travel to for the Casco Bay Japan Exchange Program. This exchange is part of the Maine Friends of Aomori relationship and an extension of the Maine Aomori Printmaking Society.

Casco Bay Japan Exchange Program

While in Aomori, Lynda will observe printmakers in residence in schools, work with  the printmakers to learn traditional Japanese techniques adapted for younger students. and tour museums. Upon return, I will develop a unit to share my knowledge with students. The Aomori schools will be sending me a small collection of prints created during the week. In the spring, I will collaborate with a colleague from Berwick Academy to establish a print exchange between students in Maine and Aomori.

I am honored to be a part of this exciting cultural exchange. I have told all of my grade 5 classes. The grade 5 visual art curriculum is inspired by the art and culture of East Asia. Students will enjoy a project inspired by the work of contemporary Japanese artist Yahoo Kusama.

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