Sunday, March 27

"Buddha's Banana" a collaborative story

Last Weekend my darling 11-13 year-old Screenprinters at Fleisher finished up their prints for our collaborative story print exchange. We started off playing a postcard game- each kid got a handful of art postcards and they had to put forward an image to fit the idea of "a setting", "a character", and "an object". Once images were submitted we voted on which ones to use and they did a "continue the story" game. So if the story below seems strange, well it just is. It's a surrealist exercise, so the results are bound to be a little odd. The kids divied up scenes to illustrate and created a 2 layer stencil print. Time was limited and only one kid got to do the final drawing layer monoprint which would have really pulled together their images. Next session I'll arrange for more "work" time.... So, let me present:
Buddha's Banana
Buddha's Banana Title page

Once in a dingy city there was an ugly woman who could not sleep.

She held a grudge against nature for making her terminally ugly and she was jealous of her beautiful neighbor.

To cheer her up, Buddha gave her a magical banana which made her extremely powerful.

But with her new powers she destroyed her beautiful neighbor's house in a fit of jealousy.

Buddha was angry and tried to convince the ugly woman to use her powers wisely.

Regretting her actions, the ugly woman put the "net of shame" over her head.

Buddha forced her to rebuild the neighbor's house and hold it up for all eternity!
 The End. What's the moral? Ummmm, be happy with what you have and don't squander gifts from the Gods. Each student made 10 prints which were exchanged so that everyone would have an illustration for each part of the story. The exchanged prints were placed inside the portfolios they had made earlier in the semester.
This semester I started having the kids use stencils to block their screens instead of screen filler. We went through 2 boxes of freezer paper, but I saved myself hours of time not having to reclaim screens with screen filler. I also started having specific drawing exercises for their sketchbooks for the first 15 minutes of class instead of free draw time. This helped me target specific art concepts I wanted them to learn in order to understand composition and color.
Next semester we'll be doing an abstract layered series of prints and a T-shirt collaboration with the digital photography students. We have a break for a few weeks, but I can't wait to get back in the studio with them again!

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