Sunday, December 28, 2014

Lesson: Color Scheme Selfies

This semester I teach Design Concepts, which touches on a variety of art forms for students to "try out."  I developed the curriculum around the sketchbook model that Matt Milkowski and I have created (and will be presenting at the NAEA convention this year 2015). 
This particular project demonstrates the use of a selected Color Scheme to create a self portrait using torn collage (practiced in the media exploration unit).  
*I've seen different ways to do something like this.  This is a great project for students in a painting class... they can back paint the clear acetate.  Also, I did a watercolor version for my daughter's sketchbook cover.  So, there are a lot of possibilities for this simple and fun project.


1.  Students use my laptop (I walked it around to each table) to take Selfies using the Photo Booth Application.   *Next time I might incorporate the idea of PHOTO BOMBING (because many students did that anyway) and encourage them to include those in their final collages.  I asked them to consider expression, pushing them to be goofy.  Apparently only a few were feeling goofy that day.   *Again, next time I might focus on compositional techniques as practiced from Unit 1.  I think that the students would focus on that more IF they did include the PhotoBombers in their composition (i.e. cropping, rule of thirds, off center, etc.)

2.  I printed out the photos in grayscale to save on ink.  Students place their portraits inside the clear sleeve protector.  Of course, you could ideally use acetate.  Being new this year, I didn't have anything purchased for my assignments.  I found a large pack of the sheet protectors, so I used those. *Later I trimmed off the binder part of the sleeve.  
3.  Students used contour lines to draw out their portraits, hopefully focusing on small details.  We had already completed a unit on contour line drawings.  When I mentioned the idea of contour, students immediately thought, "Oh no!  I have to use one continuous line?!  Without looking???"  So there we go- I guess I need to be a little clearer as to what contour really is... not just the assignment we had completed (continuous contour and blind contour drawings with wire sculptures.  See other post).   We used fine point sharpies.  The ultra fine point are too light of line weight for this project.  

4.  Students then placed a blank white sheet of paper on top of their contour drawings and traced onto the paper.  This paper was then used as the sheet to loosely collage.

5.  Students choose a color scheme.  We talked about using emphasis to distinguish background from foreground.  We talked about using values in the colors to differentiate areas of the image that might use the same color (i.e. light orange versus burnt orange).  I chose complementary color scheme of blue and orange and noticed many of my students chose that one.  I originally thought it was because I had chosen it, but I think most kids actually chose it because they are our school colors.  

6.  Collage, collage, collage!  Use the clear protector every once in a while on top to check that you are happy with progress and placement.  

7.  Place finished collage inside the clear protector.  WA-LA!  

Made a COOL COLOR SCHEME (or monochromatic)
version to show a different way to create this.
The purple in the background is actually
a lap desk I used at home to work on.  

What?  Sun in the corner???  Still successful, right??!

"To be, or not to be..."
We had just finished Dia de los Muertos Pinch Pot Skulls.