September 23, 2022

October Art Challenge: #dollartreeterrors

I posted about this earlier because I wanted everyone to have enough time to get their materials and make a plan!  Now that we are getting closer to the end of September, I wanted to give you all a reminder about #dollartreeterrors.  I'm a huge fan of Dollar Tree, and love all the crafting materials (traditional & otherwise).  I may be doing the #pumpkinaday challenge as well, but knew for sure that a nontraditional art supply crafting opportunity would be super fun! 


Just go to Dollar Tree and pick up a stuffed animal or doll (or whatever you wish really), and transform it into something spooky!  You can add things to it, paint it, combined two different things.  The only limitation is your imagination!


Post your finished project (progress pictures with the finished project would be great!) to your social media.  Give it the hashtags: #dollartreeterrors #dollartree #artchallenge #octoberartchallenge #artwithmre

September 20, 2022

Paint Stick & Pastel Pumpkins

 We have been painting & talking about color, color mixing, blending..etc.  I thought it would be fun to try to transfer the ideas into an oil pastel pumpkin.  We used paint sticks for the background & oil pastels for the pumpkin.  I told them they had to use the background color in the pumpkin as well. 

September 18, 2022

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Continue

 As artists we take our life experiences, art experiences, training, and imagination everywhere we go.  Anything & Everything can be inspiration for our art.  Sketch books, napkins, digital collections fill up with promising concepts for future work! Making art becomes a basic need for existing.  However, there can be seasons of our life where we are not creating.  It happens: job, family, LIFE!  I've heard it said that it is like riding a just get back on & go.  I don't really feel that is true.  It is very easy to slip into bad habits, struggling to concentrate, and to becoming easily frustrated when we're out of the artistic habit of creating. I picture the artist like a pond.  It has all the makings for life & vibrancy, but with no input or becomes stagnant!  It will take time to get yourself back into the swing of things.  With discipline and hard work you can once again see the fruits of your labor.

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
Colossians 2:6-7

Our walk with God is the same way.  Life can sometimes get in the way.  We find ourselves not reading our Bible, not spending time in prayer, lacking fellowship with believers, and forget about any kind of discipleship/mentoring going on.  When this happens, we come stagnant....disconnected....out of touch with The Giver of Life!   Our life no longer reflects one passionately seeking after God.  We stop seeing some of the exciting God things that use to be apart of our daily walk with Him.  He has never left.  He is still there in your life.  You just aren't seeing fruit.  Yes, we can confess our sin(which really it is...putting other things before God), and ask for the Lord to help us keep Him first in all things. Getting back into the Word, praying, and spending time with brothers and sisters in Christ(we're all hypocrites and slackers....they will welcome you back! Haha).  You will begin to see God's hand at work in your life, you will know He is with you(and never left you in the first place)...and the fruit will grow once more!  

Receiving Christ is where it STARTS....but we must be ROOTED in Him....and continue on!  Continuing on is not is active & moving!  Just like our faith (and art) should be!  

September 15, 2022

TGE Scarecrow at Cheekwood: Lady Rosinfair

Every year Cheekwood Gardens has their Cheekwood Harvest festival and invites area schools & organizations to create scarecrows to go along their garden pathway.  This year the theme was botanicals grown at the gardens.  I selected the Rosinweed.  Imagine a very tall yellow daisy type flower (I had not heard of it before?!?).  Last year was my first year to participate...and I learned a lot through my mistakes.  It will be up till the first of Nov.  Scroll down to read the amazing story my 2nd graders came up with. 

Lady Rosinfair  (inspired by the Rosinweed)

Lady Rosinfair came to life when a magical princess longed for a friend cast a spell on her favorite flower. They danced together as the breezes blew, shared secrets in the sunlight, and played together in the rain.  (based on ideas from second graders at TGE) 


September 14, 2022

Dollar Tree Glass Pen & Ink Set Review

I was so excited to try these out, and they did not disappoint! Check out how the Glass Pen & Ink set from Dollar Tree performed! 

September 13, 2022

Dollar Tree Metallic Marker Review

If you like metallic markers....check this review out.  
They are all from Dollar Tree, but not all things at Dollar Tree 
are created equally! 

September 12, 2022

It's that season again....

Practicum Student Season!!!!

(Yes, Pumpkin Latte Season too!?!?)

I'm very fortunate to live in a city that has a lot of universities!!!  I've had 13 student teachers, and countless practicum students.  I LOVE IT.  I truly enjoy working with the next generation of art educators, and sharing my love(and experience) for the profession with them.

I'm very excited about these two students from MTSU!! They are excited to learn & try new things....and they jumped right in and worked along side students.  I'll post there displays/posters/b-boards & their lessons when they get to that point! 

September 11, 2022

Sunday Devotional With Mr.E: The Van Gosh We Don't Know

 Vincent Van Gogh is one of my favorite artists.  Seeing his work in person is almost a religious experience.  The color, composition, and texture of his work can hold my gaze for untold amounts of time!  Most people know of Van Gogh, and might actually be able to pick his work out of a line up.  It has been a favorite for umbrellas, calendars, puzzles, mugs, and other printable items.  However, this is what most know about Van Gogh: Beautiful Art, Cut Off His Ear, and Killed Himself.  Based off of this knowledge, most people have great pity for the life he lived...and shake their head at the foolish loss. 

What about the Van Gogh we don't know? Vincent Van Gogh was a teacher, a pastor, and a missionary before embracing his call as an artist. Though he never lasted long in any of his previous "professions" reveals his heart for people & for God.  Yes, it is true he did have a deep internal struggle that led to his suicide. It is true he made some "bad" choices in his life.  However, he lived so much life in his 37 yrs on this earth that people do not consider. (Like he produced over 2000 works of art...many of those in the last decade.)  For him to be remembered as a sad/depressed man who cut his ear off....shows a lack of understanding & compassion.  We judge an aspect of his life without considering the man as a whole.  We look at the sad expression of his self portraits, and forget the smile of the sunflower!  

What am I getting at?  

(This section of scripture begins with the Pharisees trying to "trap" Jesus....bringing a woman that was caught in the act of adultery.)

When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.  Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.  At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there.  Jesus straightened up and asked her, "Woman, where are they?  Has no one condemned you?"  "No one, sir" she said.  "Then neither do I condemn you, " Jesus declared.  "Go now and leave your life of sin."  
John 8:7-11

We only allow people to see so much of our life.  We keep the things less desirable hidden/covered up.  We then point our fingers at those who do not choose to hide their "issues" and shake our head & wag our finger. (How often have I rolled my eyes at or dehumanize the Kardashians as idiots...instead of feeling a compassion for them?) You know what though, God knows us inside and out.  There are no hidden places with The Lord.  And yet...He deeply desires a relationship with us.  So much so that He came to Earth, showed us the way we should live, died on the cross for our sins, and rose again to give us new life in Him.  He doesn't throw the first stone...He is the first to reach out in LOVE!  There is no sliding scale for sin...sin is sin!!!  Yours is just as wrong as those you judge.  Yet He wants you to be His.  If the Lord can look through the eyes of love at us...why can we not extend the same to those around us.  We need to be less quick to judge & justify our own behavior based on the world....and quicker to extend the same love & grace given to us.  

Maybe I'm speaking to myself?  However, I think most of us do have areas we need to "adjust" to the Lord's heart.  What is your area(s) where you lack grace/compassion? 
 Ask the Lord to reveal it...and heal it!

September 06, 2022

October Art Challenge

 Join the fun!!! During the month of October create a creepy character using something from Dollar Tree. Cut it, add to it, paint it...whatever you need to do to make something fun and spooky! Post it to social media using #artchallenge #dollartreeterror anytime during the month!