18 November, 2019.
I introduced oil pastels to my art students this afternoon. My room was clean and well organized and everything was all set for the fracas that is a group of eighth graders armed with oil paint in a stick.
I gave a short demo to show how to blend these big, clumsy crayons. A bit of oil applied with a Q-Tip to “melt” the applied color seemed to be at the top of everyone’s list of techniques to try. Sgraffito? Not so much.
About fifteen minutes in and the chaos began to subside. Because my kiddos will run if they think their image is getting captured, I had to camouflage my sketchbook by obscuring it behind my iPad. One super fast sketch later and I had a sort of composite outline drawing, color and fills and lettering to get added later on.
Art class is often a mixture of nearly controlled pandemonium, poor behavioral choices, and moments of sublime clarity. Kids are kids, and that simply means they are ridiculously goofy. They do and say some of the most confounding things; it’s impossible to get angry, though – one minute they’re throwing pencils across the room and the next minute someone is eating a glue stick.
And then there are the moments when something sticks.
I’m looking forward to those moments in the coming weeks.
Uni-Ball Vision pen, Pitt Big Brush pen, and watercolor in Stillman and Birn sketchbook.