This week, I did something I've never done before; I taught teachers! For almost 3 years, I worked as an Artist in Residence, teaching art and mural-making to students grades K-12. I loved it a WHOLE LOT. There were only two major cons to that gig: #1 I never stayed at one school long enough to form real bonds and working relationships with the kids and other faculty. As soon as I learned everyone's names, it seemed I had to switch again. #2, I made good money when I was working, but the residencies came very unpredictably, making it hard to make a living. So I made a change, and moved to Portland to be a graphic designer/muralist. Combined, my two jobs now allow me to have those lasting working relationships, and make living. But I do miss teaching very much sometimes. Having never studied education, I learned what I did about it through watching other teachers (I was in SO many classrooms, I got to observe their styles and what worked and what didn't) and through my own trial and error.
This week, I was able to share what I've learned with teachers. It felt good to pass that knowledge along to people who can use it. My mom is a retired teacher of 30+ years, so we got to teach the seminar together! My mom gave her presentation on making paper collage murals, and I gave mine about making painted murals. She has the huge knowledge base of having taught for that long, and I was coming at it from a place of being an artist. It was really a great combo and we complimented each other's presentations, and reinforced each other's points really well.
After we gave presentations for an hour, we used the second hour to get teacher's hands a little dirty and actually made stuff! We split the room of 40 teachers into 2 groups; one group practiced painted murals, one practiced paper murals. I was busy facilitating my group, so don't have any good pics of my mom's groups' paper mural, but it came out really amazing! I was so impressed with what they painted with me too! They worked on 2 different panels, and came together to make artistic decisions. It was pretty cool to watch them use some of the principles I taught. Check out the pics below.
If you are interested in making painted murals in your classroom, or with another group, you can get my presentation with this link:
Happy weekend and till next time,