The arts of Woodstock High School

Rhiana A.

Staff Writer

Students in the art classes at Woodstock High School create many exciting projects that provide a hands-on learning experience for them.  Art is often categorized as visual, architectural, or graphic. Woodstock High School offers classes for many genres of art such as photography, ceramics, sculpture, drawing and painting, graphic design, and interior design. In these classes students are creating many artistic pieces and learning new techniques of art.

In drawing and painting classes, students are constantly working on a visual journal. A new topic is introduced each week, and students create a page in the visual journal representing their view point on the topic. Mrs. Lorraine Tesina, the drawing a painting teacher, said, “Some of the topics students have already used for their journals are fear, metaphor, fortune cookies, animal self-portraits, and if I wear a plant.” The journal has many layers including a base (made of gesso, which is a thick paint that prepares the page), collage, paint, pencils and pens, and writing about the topic/journaling. The final product can be extremely detailed, making the visual journal an effective way to express the point of view on a subject and show the emotions the artist has toward something.

Along with drawing and painting classes, Woodstock High School also offers ceramic class. Ceramic students just finished learning the basic techniques to using clay. “In ceramics students have just finished making the pinch pot, coil pot and slab construction. Now students are going to start to use the techniques they have learned to create more complex projects such as the box and the whistle,” explained art teacher Mrs. Anne Berman. The pinch pot is created by starting with a ball of clay and making a dent in the middle; the artist then pinches the sides of the dent and brings it up to make a pot form. The coil pot is made by using a flat circle as the base, and then a long piece of rolled-out clay is placed on the outside of the circular base which is continually layered. These simple projects serve as a starting place to create more complex projects.

Ceramics is learning the basics of using clay while graphic design is learning the basics of Photoshop. Currently in graphic design, some students are learning how to change a picture using Photoshop. Jessica Ison, a senior and a graphic design student, said, “In graphics we are taking pictures off of the internet and cloning people in and out of the picture. We are also changing the colors that are in the original photo into a choice of our own.” To clone in Photoshop, the clone stamp tool must be used. This tool is helpful because it makes certain objects in a picture appear multiple times, making objects seem abnormal or a scene look futuristic. The clone tool that is being taught in graphic design class allows students to make their own design out of an original picture.

In photography students are also using technology to make art. Students are sent on treasure hunts where there are lists of items they must capture while using artistic skills that are used in photography. Rebecca Chadwick, a senior and a photography student, said, “In photography we are sent on a treasure hunt. I am taking photos of anything spoiled, which is interesting and different. I enjoy photography because it allows me to show how I view things.”  There are other topics that are given for students to photograph such as something yellow, something locked, or something in the fridge. The photos taken while on the Treasure Hunt are then edited and made into a foldable photo album. Photography can show views on many different subjects, but the projects given allow students to have a guide and an idea to start with.

Interior Design classes started with the idea of The Wizard of Oz when they were helping with the decorations for the Homecoming Dance. Ison explained, “In interior design, we found ideas and made the centerpieces for homecoming. One of the centerpieces was a pair of red shoes that resemble Dorothy’s shoes from the Wizard of Oz. The shoes are made out of red paper.” The projects in interior design are helpful for events and also for when students move out and live in their own places. Interior design has many exciting projects that can also help the school.

Woodstock High School has a variety of art classes, and in each class there are projects that students learn from and become more creative. Each project teaches a new way to use the tools provided in class to make art, whether it is technology or a physical media. All of the art students are learning through projects and are expressing emotions through the different genres of art.

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