January 19, 2018

Tempera Talk On A Snow Day

After being out of school for a week because of snow/ice....I HAD TO GET BACK IN MY CLASSROOM!  I'm not sure if any of you are like me, but I love a schedule, love teaching art, love my classroom, and love being prepared.  My wife(knowing all this about me) encouraged me to come in today and get some things done.  So here is the video I made about tempera paint & how I'm managing the materials!!  Wasn't on my to-do list.....but you all are worth it! 

Would love to hear your management tips & tricks for tempera & painting in general!  

January 18, 2018

!!!!!! Ugly Doll Supply Alert !!!!!!

In the fall you may have seen my posts on my 4th grade Ugly Doll project.  There are "extra" costs to such projects, but it is totally worth the investment.  However, you can find some great deals to make it very affordable.  One "trick" I use is for the stuffing.  After Christmas, I hit the stores to find the best sales on Christmas Snow.  That is the white fluff that looks & feels like quilt batting /poly-fil people use under their trees, on mantels, or other decorating for the season.

Right now Dollar General has their Christmas items on sale for $0.25. 
!!!! T  W  E  N  T  Y  - F  I  V  E -  C  E  N  T  S !!!!

I bought all the bags they had.  They aren't huge, but this will be at least 2 yrs worth!!!  I don't always find it every year..so I stock up!   

January 14, 2018

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Directions

Art is all about rebellion.  There are no rules.  Anything & everything goes. 
Many believe these statements to be true.  I'll concede to the fact that art often pushes established ideas, concepts, and boundaries. However, art is also full of rules, processes, and procedures that are paramount to creating.  Without the establishment of these norms, some art forms would not be possible.  Knowing & practicing the rules & directions for a given medium do not stifle the artist, but allow them to find success as they imbue their work with their adaptations, stylistic choices, and unique voice.  Following the directions are important!  Not warping a loom correctly, firing at improper temperatures in ceramics, removing enamel from the kiln too soon, using spray adhesive in an enclosed non-ventilated space (umm, this might have happened to me the first time I used the product and did not read the directions)....when you don't follow the directions you deny the integrity of the art form.

Many view Christianity as a list of do's & don'ts.  It is made up of rules that must be followed, but that no one seems to follow well.  It is "Commandments" that come across big, scary and unobtainable.  Those that view it this way are missing an important thing...GRACE.  The idea of grace is a major component within the Christian faith, but is often misunderstood.  Grace is unmerited favor.  It is a gift we are given freely that we do not deserve and are without the ability to "earn".   In Ephesians 2: 8-9 it says "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith- and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- not by works so that no one can boast."  However, God's grace transforms us.  Some may think grace is a "get out of jail free card" or a license to sin, but I wonder if they have truly experienced God's grace in their lives.  When a person truly is impacted by the grace & love of the Lord, they want to live a life that is honoring and pleasing to God.  They want to apply what the Bible says in all areas of their lives. The list of do's & don'ts become the heart's desire to honor God, know Him, and a way to make Him known.  

It is God's will that your good lives should silence those who foolishly condemn the Gospel without knowing what it can do for them, having never experienced its power.  You are free from the law, but that doesn't mean you are free to do wrong.  Live as those who are free to do only God's will at all times.  Show respect for everyone.  Love Christians everywhere.  Fear God and honor the government.  1 Peter 2: 15-17

January 13, 2018

Taking My Own Advice

So I want to be purposeful about creating this year.  I know in February there will be the #heartaday2018 challenge, but what about the rest of the year?  I had good intentions of starting January 1st, but here we are a couple weeks in & I've yet to make anything other than my teacher examples.  Am I the only one in this boat??

The amazing Mona Lisa Lives Here posted a 365 day challenge several years ago.  

I just think I want to do something that has more "flow"? One day would lead into the next day, into the next day, into the next day...etc. 

So what are you all doing?  Share in the comments or tag me on social media with what you're doing/using to hold yourself accountable for creating.  

January 11, 2018

Kindergarten Meets Kandinsky

We kicked off the class with a YouTube Video.   If you have not discovered Art With Mati & Dada.....GO CHECK IT OUT NOW!!!  They are short yet informative!  Make sure you preview first..there may be a couple that you might not feel comfortable showing your students.  The Kandinsky video is great!!  

We then looked at several works by Kandinsky, and I allowed my kindergarten students to make observations about what they saw.  (The little ones are so amazing in their responses!!!)

After I reviewed painting "rules/procedures", I started playing some instrumental music....passed out supplies...and let the students begin.  It was a magical time in the art room.  



January 09, 2018


Several years ago I did an all school art show on the theme of BUGS! It was so much fun!! One of my favorite projects from the art show was a first grade lesson I called SPLAT!  I had the kids imagine a cartoon book just splatted on their windshield.  What would it look like?  How would it's body be?  I made them stand up and try to pose like the bug(hysterically funny!!).  Then I had the kids trace with Sharpie & paint with watercolor.  This time we made it a marker project.  

January 07, 2018

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: TOGETHER

 I once staffed a summer inner city mission project in Louisville, KY.  We lived just outside of the city in a former monastery. We were told that there was a building on the property that was used as an artist commune.  This idea was so fascinating to me.  The artists would live there for a period of time, and spend their days creating & being surrounded by other creative people.  There were visual artists, writers, and musicians all residing together.  How encouraging would this be?  How motivating would it be to be surrounded by other artists?  Spending your days creating, discussing creative things, observing other creative people as they pursued their gifts/talents.  I can only imagine how this environment would push me as an artist.  You couldn't help but grow!  There is just something about being together with others who share in your passions.

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another - and all the more as you see the Day approaching.  Hebrews 10: 24-25

We are designed for relationships.  We are created to be connected.  In the Bible, we see again and again how relationship is at the core of God's story for His creation.  Many will consider "punching" in & out at a church service to be enough.  However, God has called us to more than what "punching" in & out can provide.  If we are to spur & encourage one another one, wouldn't we have to have more of a relationship than an hour or two could yield?  We must develop relationships that will allow for us to speak into one another's lives.  We must create an environment where we can help one another to grow.  We must spend time together.  Relationships need time.  I'm not suggesting a "commune".  I'm just saying that we need to be intentional in making time in our life to develop connections/relationships.  So often we feel our lives are too busy for such things.  Time can be as simple as eating a meal together, going shopping together, or lending a hand helping.  Living life together allows for depth to happen.  In that depth you can begin to encourage & spur each other on in a way that will grow you closer together & in your relationship with the Lord. 

January 04, 2018

January 02, 2018


A friendly reminder for all NAEA members to take a few minutes & VOTE!!!!  You should have received an email(or 2...or 3) about the election.  It honestly only takes a couple minutes to complete. 

If you haven't been told to day...you are valued & appreciated!!
Thank you for being a part of such an amazing group of educators.