Follow along, It'll be fun!!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Computer Class Activity

I've been away from my blog for so long! I have made it through my first two weeks of teaching Gaming and Web Design to nearly 200 middle school students. I think I'll return on Monday and shoot for another week!

I came up with a great activity for them to do on Monday.
We have covered a lot of information so far. I created a website for the class using what else?...blogspot... I literally put the site together in an hour. I use it everyday to post the lessons and bell work. I also have pages for chapters and other information. The list of resource links is a great feature too.
Anyway, their activity for Monday is to go to and create a word cloud using the terms we have covered. They will open the website and in windows side by side and copy and paste words from our class website. The main concepts will be copied and pasted several times more than the sub topics. They will then have fun creating their word cloud white background with black and gray words only. I will select a few word clouds to print out. Can't print them all/ too much ink.
I will use these lovely word clouds to decorate the walls of my classroom!:)
Here are some screen prints to show you my process.


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Chalkboards for the Classroom

Classrooms sure have changed!  It used to be that every classroom had a chalkboard. Could you imagine back when you were a kids, if you had somebody say to you, there will be no chalkboards in the classrooms by the time your kids go to school.  You would have thought they were crazy!  Chalkboards and classrooms go together like peanut butter and jelly!

Here is my new classroom and guess what...NO Chalkboards!  Only computers and whiteboards.  We'll have to change that!:)


I see a perfect surface to put chalkboards!
Stay tuned...

This may take a while. I'm pretty busy these days. Teaching middle school kids game design and web design is fun but a lot of working too!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Painting with crayons!

I wrote this post on my new blog Art by Instinct but I'm still pretty attached to this blog. You can see all of my chalkboards and artwork at my new blog but I just can't leave my old friend Chalk it up! So sometimes I will cross post and sometimes I will write something completely different, depending on the time available.

After coming across a very interesting idea on I decided to experiment with crayons as a "serious" art medium.-

Here is the the picture that started it all for me

Crayon hot glue gun

As I read more about the process I though I just had to try it. One person who tried it said they glued the crayons to the canvas and left it in the hot car to melt.
I decided to take a box of old Crayola Crayons and peel the wrappers(hint-use an X-acto knife to score down the length of the crayon and simply peel the cut wrapper)
Then I glues five of the peeled crayons to the center of the canvas and propped it up against the wheel of the car. I live in Florida so I didn't think I needed to put it in the car to help melt the crayons.
Interestingly, after 3 hours in the hot August Florida sun only the indigo and violet started to melt. This was not working.

Crayon canvas

This melted the crayons in no time

Melted crayon canvas
The little white flecks are pieces of grated white crayon sprinkled over the top.
To further help the process I used my embossing gun to keep the wax melted and move it around fluidly.

Here is the end result of my first attempt.
Crayon landscape

I'm pretty happy with the results of this first try.
Now It's time to really experiment with this technique!

This time I decided to use a piece of 6"x6" wood instead of canvas. A more rigid support seem more stable for the wax.
Here is my second attempt at a crayon painting landscape.

Purple sky

I like the way the wax drips off the edge of the wood, revealing the process.

Wood landscape
To help the melting process along I put the canvas into the warming drawer at the bottom of my oven.

This could be addicting!

You might call this the cheap man's encaustic painting (although I've never done encaustic painting before, so don't know how similar this is) I would love to learn encaustic someday.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Little chalkboards for sale

I'm very excited! I just opened an Amazon Chalk it up! store.
So far I only have one item listed but it's a start. We are hoping to reach more people looking for chalkboards
I still love my etsy shop and will always have chalkboards there.

I also listed a new painting in my Art Spectrum shop


I have been so side tracked lately I don't know which way is up! Do you even have so many thoughts running through your head that you just can't see straight?

I mentioned in an earlier post that I created a new website for all of my artistic endeavors. Art by Instinct
Well, a few days ago I was trying to create another new and separate website and completely destroyed ABI! So I had to go back to the drawing board and rebuild it. Sometime redoing things gives you the practice you need to improve. I hope to get good enough soon to offer custom websites to others.

I think I made some improvements on my new site (it's still under construction) I hope you will check it out and let me know what you think.

Have a great day!