Friday, May 6, 2011

Career Day

How frightening can a group of junior high kids be anyhow? After all I live with one –right? Well, frightening enough to cause my stomach to have butterflies on Career Day! I was invited to speak to the Art Class on Career Day at Begich Middle School today and was nervous up until I demonstrated how I use and wear my welding gear. I should have just worn it for the whole presentation because I felt much more comfortable! Even though I was nervous, the kids were great. They asked good questions, had ideas and w

anted to learn more about the construction of sculptures and my various mediums. With images of my web site and work displayed on a Smart Board in the background, I started off by asking the class a few questions. Do you like to draw, raise your hand. Do other people think you are a good artist, raise your hand. Do you enjoy art class or even doodling, raise your hand. Then I said the next couple questions were the most important if you wanted to be a successful, independent artist. Do you get up each morning on your own without anybody telling you twice and do you do your homework on your own without being asked repeatedly to do so? And finally, do you take care of the things that are important to you, say an ipod, DS, nice tennis shoes,

your clothes and even your room? I reinforced what the art teacher had been sharing with the students this week about the importance of dedication, responsibility and diligence in any job and that being a successful artist is no different. Taking good care of my health and my tools meant that I could continue to work each day as well. I shared the importance of exercising my creative brain by drawing in different mediums and expressing my art in different ways such as entering the Post-It note contest as an example. One of the best ideas I had was to bring samples of the PRESS Post-It contest winners and a large brick of multi colored Post-It notes for the students to work on their own Post-It pieces next week. The students were all inspired by the diversity of the entries and the thought of being able to make small art using various themes in quantity. They learned what stippling was from the cover art and were eager to experiment using that style. But hands down their favorite part of my presentation was being able to try on the extra welding helmets and welding gloves I brought!

Here is a sneak peek of some pieces for my upcoming Garden Show at the Spenard Farmer's Market opening May 21!!

This is one of my new "Raven Garden Panels" that can be for the deck or garden and act as a privacy screen. The panels are about 5-6' tall. I've welded different designs to the panels including this one with a Raven on branches.

These are two "Garden Beds" that I thought would look great in a garden with a flat of flowers planted as a "mattress!" They are plasma cut and welded steel so they'll rust up and patina nice in the rain.

Here are a couple of bicycles I made and are about 4' tall. The patterns are from my public art sculpture "Bicycle Bloom." The bike sculpture on the right I donated to the Alaska Lung Association's Clean Air Challenge. Along with a gift certificate the sculpture will be the 3rd place prize.


Linda Starr said...

Somehow I would never picture you as nervous, what a great role model you are for the kids; those beds are so cool, at first I thought they were some type of castle when I saw them lying down.

Orion Designs said...

That's so great that you did the career day thing at Gus' school. Something tells me that you were the only artist to do this!

cindy shake said...

Thanks guys! This was a different Junior High school than the one Gus attends -so I wasn't even familiar with where Begich was located. It was a school wide career day and the sad thing was that I was the ONLY one to show up! I guess there were other "professionals" teachers had invited but nobody but the art teacher's guest (me!) was able to attend. GO ARTS!

Patricia Griffin said...

What a treat you must have been for the kids! Love your approach to teaching the practicalities of art. Your words of wisdom about being a self-starter and responsibility really can be applied to any business... Great idea on the garden "beds"!

ang said...

HA love it... bet your presentation was awesome:)) and!!!! love your garden beds!!!!!!!