3/27/18

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Today I had a meeting for the Art Integration Club I belong to. We looked at an art gallery that is located in one of the academic buildings at my university. This particular gallery contained the artwork of one of the professors from the art department.

The art consisted of bronze castings of Barbie legs attached to spherical objects, and on the bottom of wooden planks. The artist also did bronze castings of a dog and sheep, with various paint brushes, and then displayed above those pieces were silhouette stitches of the same thing (unfortunately, I didn’t get any pictures).

I found this particular art gallery to be interesting because I wasn’t sure what the meaning or purpose behind the art was, and I was unsure of how the Barbie legs related to the animal castings and stitches.

I struggle looking at art sometimes because I want there to be a clear and concise meaning. I get frustrated looking at pieces that don’t seem to mean anything, so I have to come up with some sort of explanation for myself. Although I get frustrated, I also appreciate when art pieces are broad enough to hold different meanings for different people. I love that it is up for interpretation and that there isn’t necessarily a right or wrong answer.

Art is a new interest of mine, so I am still trying to figure out how to decipher intimidating pieces, and maybe there isn’t a right or wrong way at all. Artistic expression is something that I want to be able to share with my future students and incorporate into lesson plans, so this club has been helping prepare me to achieve that goal. I hope that my students will be able to take away something from every piece of artwork they see, and that they won’t find it intimidating.

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3/26/18

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I was contemplating about whether I wanted to write about this or not. It’s hard for me to talk about because the pain is still fresh, but I am hoping that writing it out will maybe help with the grieving process.

On Friday morning, I woke up to a text from my mom saying that my 13-year-old yellow lab, Tanner had to be put to sleep because his liver was no longer functioning. As you can imagine, this is a very unpleasant thing to wake up to.

My first emotion was anger. The doctors were not doing everything that they could and they should be able to fix his liver.

The second was sadness. Tanner is the first dog my family got, and I was only seven when we brought him home. He was alive for a large portion of my life, which I’m grateful for, but naturally, I’m selfish and I wanted more time.

My house is three hours away from my university’s campus, so my sister and I drove home (I broke some speeding laws) and we made it to the veterinary clinic to say our goodbyes.

Saying goodbye to Tanner was one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life. I handle death very poorly. My go-to solutions are to avoid and deny. I find that if I trick myself into thinking that he isn’t actually gone, it doesn’t hurt as much. I realize this is probably unhealthy, but it’s the only way I know how to cope.

I’m glad that he isn’t in pain anymore, and I’m so grateful that he was around for so long. I know that time heals all wounds, but it really sucks right now, and I think it will for a very long time. For now, I will hold onto the memories of him, and take comfort in knowing that we gave him the most fulfilling life we could.

20180324_022702000_iOS20180323_201438449_iOS20160306_160147000_iOS  “So this is where we part, my friend,

And you’ll run on, around the bend,

Gone from sight, but not from mind,

New pleasures there you’ll surely find.

I will go on; I’ll find the strength,

Life measures quality, not its length.

One long embrace before you leave,

Share one last look before I grieve.

There are others, that much is true,

But they be they, and they aren’t you.

And I, fair, impartial, or so I thought,

Will remember well all you’ve taught.

Your place I’ll hold, you will be missed,

The fur I stroked, the nose I kissed.

And as you journey to your final rest,

Take with you this – I loved you best.”

-Unknown

Tanner Cisco Tobias McQuillen 

November 10, 2004 – March 23, 2018

3/25/18

I have a serious addiction problem. The source of my addiction – Target. We finally got one that is super close to campus, which is great, but also very bad.

I just spent roughly two hours exploring the ENTIRE store and I walked out of there with $55 worth of merchandise that I didn’t necessarily need.

I know that as soon as I step foot in a Target, there is no going back. I will buy something, because I can’t not buy something. They have everything you could possibly dream of, which makes it that much worse. I walk the aisles with an impulse to buy everything in sight (however, I am a poor college student so I quickly rethink that).

Target knows this, which is why they put their dollar section right at the front of the store so there is no avoiding the deals. And you feel less guilty since it’s the dollar section, but then before you know it, you have 30 items and it’s not cheap anymore.

I will be steering clear of Target for the next month, and then I will inevitably repeat the vicious cycle of spending my entire paycheck at once.

3/22/18

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I have recently started watching a new series on Netflix called the 100. This show is based on a futuristic society that lives in space on a space station known as the Arc. Three generations previously, humans were forced to evacuate Earth because the planet was consumed by nuclear radiation caused by war.

The Arc has a serious problem. They are running out of oxygen on the ship, and their only options are to decrease the population or return to Earth. The council decides to send 100 prisoners that are under the age of 18 down to Earth to see if they can survive there. If Earth is not habitable, they will have to start murdering their own people to conserve the oxygen supply to save the human race.

I’m only seven episodes into the first season, and I am completely hooked. This TV show is based off a book series by Kass Morgan. Once I finish the show, I plan on reading the books as well.

If you are into futuristic shows and books, I highly recommend the 100!

 

3/10/18

I am a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a girlfriend.

I keep everything that has the slightest sentimental value. I am a low-key hoarder.

I wish I could travel around the world. There are so many places I have on my bucket list.

I love the beach, my family, reading, crocheting, hiking, and kayaking.

I dance like no one is watching (depending on who I am around).

I sing all the time, but I have to know the lyrics.

I think teachers have one of the most important jobs in the entire world.

I really want to inspire my future students to do great things.

I need to stop worrying so much about how I am perceived by others.

I should take more time to enjoy the small moments in life.

I can make an impact as an educator.

I make scarves, blankets, and baskets when I crochet.

I always try to be the best possible version of myself that I can be.

3/8/18

 

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I wanted to share another one of my favorite children’s books today. It’s called Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets by Kwame Alexander with Chris Colderley and Marjory Wentworth, illustrated by Ekua Holmes.

I bought this book recently at a Scholastic Warehouse sale, and I instantly fell in love with it. I am a huge fan of poetry. It’s something that I am passionate about, and I want to share it with my future students. When I was in school, I was not exposed to poetry until I was in high school, and even then, I only got to see Shakespeare. It was not until college that I really started enjoying reading poetry for fun, and I got to see several different types of poetry.

What I love most about this book is that the authors created their own poems using the style and structure of iconic poets such as, Robert Frost, Nikki Giovanni, Maya Angelou, and so many more. I think this would be a great book to use to introduce poetry as a whole, because it provides a quick snapshot of multiple forms of poetry.

It also has amazing illustrations to go along with the poems. I think they really add to the poems. Above I included one of my favorites out of the book. Another great feature is, at the back of the book there are short biographies of all of the poets who these poems were inspired by, so you could take those and use them to do a lesson on the actual poets themselves.

Overall, I think this book is a great resource. A lot of times poetry is not introduced to children at an elementary level, and it should be. I think a lot of students would enjoy reading it, and  maybe even writing it too!

 

3/7/18

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I was having a conversation yesterday with one of my good friends about what makes art, art. Alanna is an art minor so she knows much more about art than I do. We were having a conversation about a specific piece of art called Fountain by Marcel Duchamp.

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As you can see by the photo I have included, Fountain is a toilet that is turned on it’s side and the artist, Marcel Duchamp, signed it with another artist’s name, R. Mutt.

My argument was that this cannot be considered a piece of art because Duchamp himself did not make the toilet, and just because he signed it does not mean that it is now art. Art to me is taking various materials to create something entirely new. Duchamp did not create anything new at all. He used something that was already made, and added nothing but a signature and a date.

Alanna did not agree with me though. She was explaining to me that he used this piece of “art” to challenge how people define art, which is what makes it art. This piece was a part of the Post Modernism Era. Out of Post Modernism came many pieces like this. The kind that make you question what defines art in the first place.

So is this art? I do not know. But, I am open to the idea that art comes in many different forms, and it holds various meanings for various people. This piece represents art to some people, and it may just be a toilet to others. I think that is why I have come to love art so much. Just because the artist intended the piece to mean one thing, does not imply that it will hold the same meaning for others. Art is a lot like stories; we take out of them what we see and what we feel, and maybe when we come back to it later, the meaning will have changed again.