Art Renaissance

Article excerpt

Choose an artwork. Look for clues to determine what is happening in the image. A series of guiding questions will help you each step of the way.

TRANSFORM your classroom into a virtual art studio and museum. Have students create their masterpieces with free online drawing, painting, and sculpting tools. Then, invite parents to the school gallery where they can view their children's artwork. The following Web sites are fantastic starting points for introducing students to the world of artistic design.

The Alphabet of Art

Learn about the elements of visual design and "read" works of visual art to understand these concepts and why they work the way they do. Examples are included to illustrate and define composition, shape, value, texture, and color. This site is for the more sophisticated high school art student.

Art Interactive

Examine four different sculptures to discover how modern artists use different methods and materials to convey ideas. These examples of figurative, biomorphism, found object, and geometric sculpture are located at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C. After studying these interesting techniques of modern artists, create your own sculpture using the interactive flash tool to see how it would be displayed in a museum. This is a very cool feature.

Art Kids Rule

View a scene through the camera's viewfinder and take a virtual picture. This interactive site gives you access to exposure, shutter speed, and lens aperture controls. Or, set the camera to auto mode and see how the camera sets the exposure. Click on the expose button. The picture will be processed and displayed on the page in another browser window. Compare your photo with the original image. A link to World Images: The world as seen through the lens of a camera allows the students to browse hundreds of photographed art objects and images from all over the world.

Art Safari: An Adventure in Looking, for Children and Adults

Choose an artwork. Look for clues to determine what is happening in the image. A series of guiding questions will help you each step of the way. Use your imagination and write a story about what you see. When you have completed your safari, craft your own masterpiece of animals on the computer using the interactive Java applet. Print your picture and view the works of children and adults from around the world in the create view. Explore the Museum of Modern Art's permanent collections. These Guides for Looking will lead the observer in exploring interesting questions around the work of art. This is a great site for encouraging students to think critically about visual arts.

Artists Toolkit: Visual Elements and Principles

Discover the tools of the trade such as line, color, and balance to build works of art. As you explore the toolkit, you can watch as art is created, find the same elements in other works of art, and design your own work using an interactive palette along with the elements and principles that were demonstrated. Videos show artists in action and the processes they use for producing art. Hounding out the site is an encyclopedia that includes definitions and visual demonstrations of the artistic concepts.

Etch A Sketch Online

See how Etch A Sketch becomes an art form. Some amazing Etch A Sketch art is displayed with information on each of the artists. Browse the gallery to see portraits of famous faces, landscapes, animals, and sports. Then try your hand at making a picture using the online Etch A Sketch tool by following 10 tips and tricks to a successful piece of artwork.

Eyes on Art

This Learning to Look curriculum is designed for teachers to help students appreciate art through a series of engaging activities. Begin with You Choose and select from a variety of famous artists' works to hang in your own museum. Once you have made your selections, explain what you believe is good art. …