Saturday, July 27, 2013


Post Adventure Assimilation

After my trip to Utah, I have been rebooting and replaying all of the information I received throughout my journey.  As always, I saw and learned some unexpected things.

As part of my integration of all corners of my life, I found connections on my journey to my art, teaching, and yoga practice.  Not surprisingly, lots of memories from the adventure are trickling back to the surface of thought one by one.

I can't help but think that whenever I travel, my students will reap some kind of benefit.  Like the pictures below of petroglyphs carved into the stone in Capitol Reef National Park. They were carved by the Fremont Culture 1000 years ago.  My thoughts immediately jumped to the discussions we have when learning about the role of the artist in society.  This role has changed tremendously, but for early artists, like the Fremonts, the artist was a record keeper of sorts. 

I will share more in the coming weeks, but for now please enjoy these ancient works of art.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Think Like an Artist, See Like an Artist

Think Like an Artist, See Like an Artist

Everyone is an artist...Some may argue this statement, however, being an artist is as much a frame of mind as an act.  What is the artist frame of mind?  You see art everywhere you go.  Art will be in the mundane.  It will be in how you move, how you talk and how you interact with the world.  

New surroundings help turn the world on its ear so the artist in you has a chance to wiggle free from its restraints and see with new goggles.  As I embark on a journey to a part of the world I've never been, I look forward to seeing with my "artist goggles".  I will share some of my journey with you through pictures and words on this blog.  As the photo above of the back of my car insinuates, art should always be a priority.  Stay Tuned!

Are you going anywhere new? Try putting on YOUR "artist goggles" and see what you find.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

More About Creative People

12 Most Striking Tendencies of Creative People

Here is an interesting link to an article about traits often found in creative people.  Do you or your child have some of these?

12 Most Striking Tendencies of Creative People 



Getting Inspired with a Visual Journal

As I work on my new blog and begin to think about how the 2013-2014 school year is going to take shape in the art room at KHES, I am so connecting to this pie graph...

I can't tell you how many times I've heard the quote, "...But it's so easy for you because you are creative."  This quote is why some people think they aren't creative.  Creativity is like anything else...learning a sport, how to play an instrument, etc.  Very few people are naturals on their first, second, or even third try.  Creativity takes work.  However, if you love the process and you don't mind learning from mistakes, it's a labor of love.

Encourage your creative side by being kind to yourself.  Encourage your children's creative selves by providing opportunities and being supportive.  We aren't all going to be professional artists when we grow up, but that's not all that it's cracked up to be.  The creative process is a window into your inner world, an exploration of your true self, a meditation...

Here is another idea for summer art opportunities for you and your child:

Begin a visual journal.  This journal can be as simple as a spiral bound notebook or as complex as a book you make yourself.

Whatever shape this journal takes, let this be a place that only you can see.  Let this be where you doodle or sketch.  Let this be a place where you glue pictures from magazines or catalogs of places you want to go, food you want to eat, books you want to read, or fantasies you want to bring to fruition. Write about what you love, dislike or look forward to.  You see, the artistic process is so much more that drawing or painting.  It is a gathering of all that inspires you....

It's cheap too!  glue, scissors, magazines, photos....whatever!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Summer and my New Blog for Fellow Art Teachers, Parents and Students

Welcome to my new blog!  

I am very excited to begin a new form of communication with my students and their parents.  I am still in the process of building the pages for this blog, but for the remainder of the summer, I plan to update the blog regularly with ideas for fun summer art activities for kids, my thoughts for art class for the 2013-2014 school year and fun posts about me and what I am doing with my summer break.  Once school begins, there will be pages added to my blog targeting my students and what they are doing in and out of art class.  You can also access the teaching website I use in art class from the above tab titled "Weekly Art Lessons" which is obviously not up to date because school is not in session.  This website can be your window into your child's art class.  It's kinda neat to see what they are learning about and then see the art work that is created from the lessons.

Please feel free to comment on posts and give me feedback or ask questions.

Currently I am reading a book called Teach Like a Pirate by Dave Burgess.  I always like to sprinkle a little professional reading into my summer reading list. The basic concept of this book is how much teachers can enrich the learning experience by integrating their own personal interests into their teaching...So, in the spirit of this idea, I will use this blog as a chance to weave some of my personal interests into the fabric of my writing and my teaching craft.  "Integration" will be my new theme as I enter my 21st year of teaching this fall!

Perhaps the most obvious place where my professional life overlaps my personal interests is through my own art.  Pottery is my first love, but I also enjoy painting and am a huge fan of visual journaling. 

When it's time to work with clay in art class, I know my excitement for clay permeates through the lesson...My students definitely absorb my excitement for this medium and it shows in their finished pieces...
As I read Teach Like a Pirate, I am reflecting on why some lessons spark my students' interests more than others...It's ME and my engagement with my students!

So here is Ms. Valentine's first Summer Art assignment:

~Choose an activity that you like to do as a family, like going to the beach...

~And as a family, create some type of finished piece of art that represents that experience. 

~The finished piece could be as simple as a photo of a sand sculpture you created together (would make a great holiday card too!) or as complex as a mosaic stepping stone using seashells and beach glass.

~And PLEASE, tell me about it here on this blog and share this blog with other parents!