Entries Tagged as 'Education'


December 10th, 2010 · No Comments · Education



My students are kicking this off tonight. This is in the new Art Warehouse that my students and I have proposed to the university: a warehouse 5 min from campus that gives seniors studio space and the entire program much needed exhibition space.

255 Franklin St, Bristol RI, Dec 10, 7-9pm.

From Teaching After the End, A Conversation Between David Levi Strauss and Daniel Joseph Martinez

October 15th, 2008 · No Comments · Artists, Education

Daniel Joseph Martinez, Divine Violence, 2007, installation, from the 2008 Whitney Biennial, [source]

Strauss: What do you try to teach, Daniel? Give me a list of five things that you try to teach.

Martinez: I am not sure that the order means anything, but it is interesting to see where things come out. The very first thing on my list is discipline. Next is criticality. And attached to that with a hyphen is curiosity. Third on my list is generosity, and attached to that is responsibility. Number four is agency. Five is autonomy. And there is a sixth: a system of respect.

-quoted in Art Journal, Fall 2005

Course Review: Sculpture

December 13th, 2007 · No Comments · Education

Phill Stott, 2007

Phill Stott, Couch Model, 2007 (made on our new 3D printer from a computer model)

Trist MacDonnell, 2007

Nick Preston, 2007

Josh Payne, 2007

These works are from the senior Sculpture course I teach at Roger Williams University. My art department is delightfully a part of the architecture school. This means fun toys like laser cutters and 3D printers and also means I regularly work with architecture undergrads and graduates (four of the five images above were created by future architects).

Our final project was to fill the School of Art and Architecture with installations. Phill Stott answered this by building a 35′ paper sculpture using a fraction of the collected waste our department creates in 2 weeks.

Course Review: Digital Media

December 12th, 2007 · No Comments · Education

Nima Khabiri, 2007

Heather Hoekstra, 2007

Brent Gentile, 2007

Tanya Zilewicz, 2007

This is my first semester at Roger Williams University where I teach intermedia and sculpture. These works were produced in Intro to Digital Media, my sophomore course.

The course consisted of 3 projects: 1) the Life Environment Project: students create where they are or where they’ve been 2) the Analog Digital Project: students combine the best physical and electronic techniques (Heather Hoekstra cleverly manipulated image transparencies over a scanner to create her work above) and 3) a Flash web site: although students usually choose to make portfolio sites, some prefer interactive artworks.

I like students to recognize and follow their interests.

Possibly the Best Lecture I’ve Ever Heard

December 3rd, 2007 · No Comments · Education


If you are an educator this is mandatory viewing. If you are a student, parent or simply like great speakers this is worth your time (thanks P).

New Standards for Digital Art Portfolios: Part 2

October 24th, 2007 · No Comments · Education, Tools and Tech

[image source]

If web sites become the new standard for viewing artists’ portfolios, then a standard portfolio web site design protocol is needed. Some artists will prefer to create their own user interfaces, but I imagine the overwhelming majority have better things to do than learn web design or spend money hiring a specialist.

The portfolio web site should not be the art, except where it is the art. The portfolio web site should serve to easily communicate artists’ works. The more predictable the interfaces is, the easier it is for viewers to get to the art. Portfolio web sites should be invisible. Viewers should think about the art and nothing else.

A commonly used standard portfolio site design would accomplish this, however no standard will work if it is not easily available or at reasonable cost.

There are two design methods that could become a new standard for digital art portfolios. One is a lesser known feature of Adobe Photoshop and the other is Apple’s iWeb.

Few realize that Photoshop has the built-in ability to create portfolio web sites. Simply place your artwork in a folder, create a folder for the new site to be placed in and select “File”/”Automate”/”Web Photo Gallery…” A box comes up that lets you select one of twenty site styles. You then select your source and destination folders (the folders you’ve already created), surf the color and size preferences and click OK. Upload everything Photoshop sticks in the destination folder (using programs like Transmit, which is free from the Apple site) to your hosting service provider (we like pair.com which is about $10 a month) and boom: instant portfolio web site. It’s so easy I made an example with our work just for kicks (the hardest part was selecting which files to put in the source folder).

Note: if you need more text and want to use Photoshop, simply include the text under the image files (as part of the actual image file itself) or include the text as a separate image file.

Photoshop is extremely limited though, iWeb is a solid step up. IWeb is almost as easy to use and allows greater freedom in site design. It also has the advantage of being free for anyone who has a newish Mac. If you’ve bought a Mac in the last couple of years, chances are you already have it on your computer. Although it took about 5 minutes to make this — which is 4 minutes longer than Photoshop took — here is our work in an example iWeb site.

Note: in iWeb, all content is easily arrangable by dragging it around. My example site was done quickly with no real attention to spacing, etc.

Note to artists who don’t have a Mac: consider getting one. Put it on your credit card next to the Japan trip. Macs are no longer more expensive than PCs and they work the way artists think.

Read Part 1

New Standards for Digital Art Portfolios: Part 1

October 22nd, 2007 · No Comments · Education, Tools and Tech


I don’t miss slides. They were expensive to create, were constantly deteriorating in quality and were difficult to view without a projector. That said, they were glorious when projected and efficient to organize. For good reason, photographic slides were the universal standard for visual artists to share portfolios.

There are many obvious advantages to working with digital portfolios. Yet, since there are so many formatting options for how digital portfolio files can be viewed, a universal standard seems to be needed.

To start off this series on new standards for digital portfolios, here is a list of top 7 current common strategies for sending digital images to art institutions, with the pros and cons of each:

7) CD with image files (no user interface)
Pro: universal media, easily forwarded, image info can be included as part of image
Con: difficult to view, managing lots of files at once can be tricky for the viewer

6) Traditional Slides made from Digital Images
Pro: familiar
Con: expensive to create and send, requires a slide projector

5) iPhoto Book
Pro: efficient, high quality
Con: somewhat over the top, expensive to send and expensive SASE, difficult to show to a group

4) Inkjet Prints
Pro: easy to view and handle, disposable
Con: relatively expensive to create and send, not easy to show to a group

3) DVD
Pro: best format to view 4D artworks
Con: requires the most patience to view

2) CD with User Interface (Flash, Powerpoint, Keynote, etc)
Pro: a delight with good interface
Con: requires artists to have interface design skills (Flash), requires viewers to be familiar with software (Powerpoint and Keynote) or requires artists to be savvy with export features

1) Email with a Website link
Pro: the easiest to send and share, easy for others to share
Con: requires web and interface design skills

Read Part 2

2007 Video Game Design

May 14th, 2007 · 2 Comments · Education

Margaret Keller, Dragonfly, 2007, still from video game

Margaret Keller, Dragonfly, 2007, still from video game

Ben Beaury, Simon Draws, 2007, still from video game

Ben Beaury, Simon Draws, 2007, still from video game

Art students collaborated with computer science students this semester in one of my courses to fabricate video games. Two games that expanded the potential of the video game medium were created by Margaret Keller and Ben Beaury. In Keller’s Dragonfly, users navigate a dragonfly through a pond. Frogs with third eyes help you discover nirvana, the goal of the game.

Beaury’s Simon Draws is a witty combination of the classic 80’s musical toy, Simon, with loose drawings in unexpected locations. Selecting the sketches in the right order forwards audience members to the next drawing.

2007 3D Design Dinner Party

May 11th, 2007 · 2 Comments · Education

Zach Otte, Table (Dashboard), 2007

Brandon Barnes, Table and Chair, 2007

Cara Murphy, Fashion (Jellyfish), 2007

Jordan Feeler, Chair, 2007

This year at Webster University I’ve taught a range of new media and sculpture courses. Here are images from my freshman 3D Design course’s final dinner party, the central theme to the course. Students this year made a chair, a table, fashion/wearable art and temporary architecture for a dinner party they could invite one guest to. Students learn craft, concept and to think of their art as a gift/meal/experience for a chosen audience to savor.

Creative Strategies

February 2nd, 2007 · No Comments · Education


In the Creative Strategies course I’m currently teaching––a freshman studio art course that investigates the process of creativity––my students are recording their life, universe and everything. Students create organization systems for holding this immense data as well as methods for flagging key points.

An interesting conversation that has emerged is how to construct a organization system that naturally reflects how you actually remember things.

It’s authentic to make art about what you know, however, it’s somewhat difficult to keep up with exactly what that is. Getting everything you know in front of you is a wonderful opportunity: the past creates a reliable map for the future.