Illustration and Animation Classes Need Industry Materials!
My students need materials that meet industry standards to be successful in illustration and animation. These include light boxes for animation and transferring sketches, cutting mats for making animation puppets and materials for traditional processes.
I teach a group of about 150 amazing students at a large urban title 1 high school. They are all amazing because of what they face each day outside of the classroom, and still show up every day giving 110%. They are the strongest group of people I've met, and they inspire me to do better every day. For many, art classes are where they feel the safest and where they feel heard. They express themselves freely through their art.
The students are a diverse group, ranging in students with a 1 to 1 instructional aide, to students who are college bound.
Due to the location of our campus, students come from all over the city. 79% of our students receive free or reduced lunch, which means that many of our students come from homes with some financial difficulties. This makes many students unable to purchase the materials needed to be successful.
In a high school art room that specializes in Illustration and Animation, it is important for students to have access to materials that mirror industry standards. This helps the students feel validated and builds confidence as well as technical skills. For example, the light boxes will give students in illustration the ability to transfer sketches to their final piece. In animation, the light boxes will be used to work through traditional animation processes. Students will be making puppets for stop motion animation, and need the self-healing cutting mats to cut materials on. Currently, the watercolor pans in our classroom are almost empty, and so old and used that most of the colors are brown. A new class set of watercolors would allow the illustration students to create beautiful traditional illustrations. The color pencils and Micron markers will allow students to add fine details to their paintings.
By providing quality materials, it signals to the students that they are worthy of using them.
Building confidence is the most important aspect of an art classroom.
This affects them beyond the art room walls. It is proven that students who are engaged in the arts achieve more across all classes and gives students a reason to be engaged. Art provides an outlet for students to feel safe to express themselves without a filter, something that is so crucial for our kids. With teaching industry specific skills in the arts, it is my job to make sure they are properly prepared to pursue and excel in these fields. In order to achieve this, the kids need access to materials that mirror what industry professionals use.
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