Missing school is difficult for any dedicated educator, but attending a conference is a valuable experience on many levels. There are a wide range of workshops and lectures at this conference including how to teach with iPads, how to become a leader of Art Education within your own community and much more. It was difficult to choose which sessions to attend. In the end though, my strongest focus for this conference was pushing myself out of my usual comfort zone and becoming a contributor. My colleague Meagan Hahn and I are presenting Digital Gets Dirty: Experimental Printmaking Techniques. This session celebrates the connections we've made to our own art-making practices and our classrooms.
Meagan and I met in 2005 at Cardinal Stritch University during our Masters of Visual Studies degree program. We both experimented with Photography, pushing the limits of alternative processes, printmaking and digital imaging. Through those experiments we discovered the book The Digital Art Studio by Bonny Pierce Lhotka, Karin Schminke and Dorothy Simpson Krause. The book and the processes described therein changed how both of us thought about art and photography. Fast forward to 2014 and our own classrooms where we are both experimenting with these techniques with students and taking them in exciting new directions that highlight student choice and the creative thinking process.
Participants in our session will receive a fantastic handout complete with recipe cards and lots of links to guide their own explorations in digital printmaking processes. They will also have the opportunity to see many of the student examples we've collected. Experimentation and process are emphasized and students are encouraged to document the factors that were involved in developing the final product. They are encouraged to see the many possibilities to layer their work and not just be satisfied with the first result.
Hopefully by this time tomorrow I will be relieved and inspired and have met many new colleagues through the WAEA Conference. I'm so grateful for being allowed the time to attend and contribute. I hope all teachers take the time to re-invigorate their practice through conferences and workshops. These are an invaluable part of our profession and ultimately benefit the students we teach.
Here is the handout participants received at our discussion. Enjoy!