Pattern Making – (Way Harder Than It Looks!) Update 1

I am really enjoying the Pattern Making class through MCAD’s Continuing Education program this fall. It is definitely fun and very challenging/time consuming. I had no idea the time it takes to make a good – or even a bad – pattern! Here are my first attempts in the class. The first one is a “toss” pattern using arrows and the second set of patterns focus on the theme “Female in the White House” which isn’t really a holiday, but obviously something I’d like to see happen. Enjoy 🙂 .

As a reminder… all rights are reserved for patterns below. Contact me if you would like to use them online, for publishing, or commercial purposes.

Illustration Class Update Part 2

For this assignment, we were asked to create a portrait illustration of a 1960’s person and an object that goes with the person in some way. I chose Rachel Carson. She was a biologist who wrote about DDT and its affect on wildlife in her book “Silent Spring”. My first attempt combined both the object and a portrait of her (left) and in my second attempt (right two) I created little “icons” that could work in a website or as a favicon. All were created using Illustrator.

Illustration Class Update Part 1 (MCAD Continuing Studies)

I am really enjoying my Illustration class at MCAD this summer. I was, at first, very hesitant to take such a class because I’ve never considered myself to be a very good illustrator; however, I have found it really great for exercising my creative muscles. I’ve also enjoyed having “assignments” again, because they really do open your mind to other problem solving techniques. See what I’ve been working on so far 🙂 .

“Overheard in New York” inspired artwork in pen and India ink.
My quote went something like this, “Honey, flamingos don’t actually do anything.” It was apparently said from a mother to son in Central Park.

Opposing Point of View on scratch board used Photoshop to add text and text ornaments.
I skipped showing my first opinion piece because I thought it wasn’t my favorite work. My first opinion piece focused on nuns in America being singled out and persecuted by the Vatican. The following week’s assignment was to flip and create a work that displays the opposing viewpoint. I thought about how the Vatican must think of these nuns as rule breakers, not much unlike unruly school children.

Valentine’s Day Card in Illustrator.
I changed this assignment to be an anniversary card. Grant’s and my 1st year anniversary is this July. We met about 5.5 years ago at Como Park in St. Paul in the warming house before a broomball game. I was wearing a red hat.

20 stories in 60 minutes in Illustrator and Photoshop.
My image was inspired by the first 2 minute story in the NPR piece but definitely took some privileges on what I decided to illustrate.

MLK Day “I have a dream…” T-Shirts and Community Input Artwork

Waconia High School remembers MLK Jr. by having a day of service – a part of Make It Count. Our school worked with Kids Against Hunger over the school day to create meals. In order to offset some of the costs of this service project, we decided to sell t-shirts that promoted MLK Jr. Day of Service. I created the design below.

If you are interested in buying one let me know! We still have some smalls and mediums left over. 🙂

In our classrooms, teachers are encouraged to take part in service projects of our own or remembering MLK Jr. legacy. Inspired by the artist Candy Chang and her community input artwork, I created these small sheets of paper that students could reflect on their own personal goals that they could work towards. Amy Fischer, an art teaching co-worker and department chair, suggested they make them artistic as well – as you can see some students really enjoyed! Here is a selection of their dreams. It is a really simple idea, but I loved getting to know our students better through it.

Trending… Art Poster – Know the Warning Signs of Art

This poster seems to be working its way through creative circles recently, just thought I’d add to it! Here is a poster created by Philbrook Museum of Art. My favorite is “How long have you been photoshopping?” Reminds me of public service ads of the 90’s (when I was growing up).

Principles of Art Zazzle Poster

Principles of Art print

Here it is. I’m sure I’ll do a couple iterations of this one (excluding the neon colors 🙂 ) But it was fun to create. Look at it or buy here.

-Shalanah Dawson

Elements of Art New Poster Design Zazzle

Elements of Art Poster print
So it is back to school time (almost) and I was visiting with the other art teacher (she is also the department head) this past week. I noticed in my room that several of my Elements of Art posters were ripped and in bad shape from falling and the summer cleaning process. I love the content on the posters; however, they are impossible to read for students from far away except for the titles (line, shape, form, color, texture, space and value). I thought it is about time that I just redesign these for learning and economy. So here it is! I hope other art teachers enjoy and use it as well. My next poster to tackle is the Principles of Art and to put up some throwing on the wheel guides. So stay tuned!

-Shalanah Dawson

Awesome Projects for Graphic Design Class

I came across this site while I was designing my Commercial Art Course (soon to be called Graphic Design). Great projects for Photoshop and Illustrator. I have yet to try out the “Smiley Face” project, but I might have some of my advanced students try it. Below are two examples from this project. Cool huh?

Mr. Moriarty’s Computer Graphic Page
Smiley Face Illustrator Project

– Shalanah Backus

Up and Running! Commercial Art Student Gallery

commercial-art

Graphic design and commercial art are some of my favorite subjects to teach and mediums to work in. Take a look at some of the artwork my students are creating! The gallery is up and running! More work will appear as the trimester continues so check back again!

-Shalanah Backus