Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Art Talk at Danilack Middle School, Toronto

For the past two days, I've been working with the amazing students of Danilack Middle School in Toronto. The art teacher, Rachel Albert, was kind enough to invite me into her classroom, where I spoke with the students about studying and pursuing art, as either a hobby or a career. I cannot thank her enough for the amazing opportunity. 


I met with 7 classes of grade 6 & 7 students. We talked at length about photorealism, still-life painting, and art-business.  The students were eager to chat about my "Tasting Room" series, offering amazing suggestions of how to expand my repertoire. Dragon fruits, California rolls, and Starbucks coffee cups were popular ideas. I encourage any readers to submit their own suggestions! 

About half way through each class, we engaged in an exercise where each student would create their own drawing of a Hershey's Kiss -- a subject I've often used in my "Tasting Room" series. By tracing the image first, the students were able to capture an impressive amount of detail in their work. We focused on contour drawing, shading, and most importantly, not eating the Hershey's Kisses until the drawings were finished. I often face the same challenge.  

At lunch-time, I sat outside the office and drew my own, original Hershey's Kiss. The students were incredibly interested in watching the piece come alive. They asked amazing questions, and shared wonderful stories about their own creative efforts. I was genuinely impressed by the academic environment at this school, not to mention the amazing art program, which continues to foster a solid appreciation of art history, and art NOW. 

And here was the final product! A brand new pencil drawing, measuring 15" x 10". This piece has been donated to Danilack Middle School, in honour of their incredible art program. Thank you for having me!

Now that I'm back in the studio, I'd better get back to my easel. Check in later next week to see a 3ft x 3ft painting of a bagel! Thanks for reading.

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