Summer has arrived, as well my retirement from the school district. I was an art teacher for over 35 years in a public high school. I know I'll miss the kids and my colleagues, but I'm ready to focus on my own art work, and other endeavors.
I had a nice spot on my porch to finish up the school year and our "remote learning."
Enjoying the views of the river that runs through my town.
Been thinking about getting a kayak after seeing all the paddlers enjoying the water!
You would think teaching from home would allow for more time to work on my printmaking projects, but I'm finding that it is more time-consuming than actually being in school. I have been trying to create new art lesson plans that can be done at home with limited supplies. It's been challenging, but we are in the home stretch now.
So....this is where I'm at with the "Goffstown Brook" print. I've carved the first layer, removing all the areas that I want to stay white. I've got the the pins and tabs and paper set to go. Now I just have to print the first color!
Here I am in my office/studio. I was making an example for one of my drawing classes, and had fun creating a line contour drawing of my space. Definitely dress code optional here!
Technically, this is my Spring Break---April Vacation, but it feels like Spring is actually taking a break itself, and leaving Winter to fill in. There are snowflakes in tonight's forecast, and it's damp and raw outside today! I'm always complaining about New England weather, but this really isn't a new phenomenon. Every year, Spring drags it's feet, until one day, Summer takes over, and just like that, we're in shorts, tee shirts, and flip flops.
This year, as the pandemic creates havoc around the world, one has to appreciate the little things that can still be enjoyed. Watching the goldfinches turn the brightest yellow. digging in the various beds in the garden, and finding new growth amidst last Fall's withered stalks and leaves, are simple pleasures.
Getting out on the rail trail for long walks, and doing on-line yoga in the house, have been mental health refreshers. Discovering ways to stay in touch with friends and family through video chats, and wide apart hangouts in the back yard, have also been essential. Trying to focus on the positive, and expressing gratitude to the people who are on the frontline of this crisis, makes me realize that I have a lot to be thankful for!
As seen on my walks in April
As my school district has converted to "Remote Learning" (like most everyone else), I've been trying to teach art without the hand-on, face-to-face lessons that are the norm. Fortunately, there are so many resources available on line. I'm thankful for all the museums that are giving virtual tours, organizations that are conducting useful webinars, and art teachers themselves who are sharing ideas, support, and their own work.
After assigning my Drawing classes a Landscape project, I did one of my own, using the picture above as inspiration.
It needs a few tweaks in the background, but mostly finished.
The next step for this drawing will be to convert it into an 8" x 10" reduction block print. I'm using tracing paper now, to define the image that will be transferred to the "soft-cut" block.
This will be the project for the coming week. I'll try to get the next steps posted in a timely manner, so you can see the process.
I've been so neglectful of this site recently, but thought I might share a little print I made for the arrival of Spring. Little did I know this would be a spring like no other, but the birds don't know it, and they are going on with life as usual, even if we are not. Watching the birds is one of the activities that is still possible as I'm engaged in "remote learning." My students are in their homes, and I am in mine, but one can see out the window, or take a nice walk outdoors as a break from the computer.
I saw red-winged blackbirds and grackles for the first time today, and of course the regulars are still here. Lots of cardinals, blue jays, chickadees, titmouse, sparrows, nuthatches, crows, starlings, gold finches, woodpeckers, and mourning doves are enjoying the food we put out. Even a couple of raccoons were visiting the other morning.
Inking the block
the reveal of the last layer of ink
The final print
Stay healthy! Get outside if you can, and enjoy the longer days and hopefully warmer temperatures!
It's the beginning of February, and there's barely any snow on the ground. We've had a few snowstorms, but there is usually a warm up right after, or rain. I don't mind though, as it's much easier to get around, and enjoy a nice walk.
I just finished this little sketch of a furry snowshoer. I guess he's taking a break from hibernation, and getting some fresh air.
I am an art teacher who loves to draw and paint, as well as illustrate for children. I also enjoy printmaking---especially block prints. Whatever I do as an artist, I have to remind myself---no pressure---it all starts by just putting pencil to paper.