Thursday, June 23, 2011

Photo Project

Last year I tried a 365 project on Flickr but stopped after 100 photos. My enthusiasm flagged when I got tired of having to upload photos every day from my camera onto my computer, then post them onto Flickr. It got tedious and time-consuming, and many days I felt like the photos I had weren't really worthy.

I do, however, still like the idea of a simple chronicle of a daily photo. Earlier this month I got a new phone. Not the iPhone I've long coveted (see this post here), but a phone my son insists is even better: an HTC Evo. It has a camera, and uploading photos from it onto Flickr is ridiculously easy. I find myself thinking a 365 deal may be doable after all. The photos won't be wonderful works of art, but they will be a chronicle, and as I am already feeling that now is a time of transition for my family, a photo diary of life from this summer solstice to next summer solstice might be an interesting thing for me to keep. Watch it evolve on Flickr if you care to (a link to my Flickr account is on the side bar). Hopefully I will keep it up!

Art and Other Things

Before my children were even school-aged (lo, those many years ago), I bought two Pocketful of Memories books from Hearthsong. The books have nine envelopes spiral-bound together, one envelope each for kindergarten to grade 8. The outside of each envelope has a place to write memories and attach the child's photo.

It's been a tradition at the end of each school year for the children to fill out their envelopes, and for me to sort through all the paperwork and choose what to store in the envelope. Report cards always go in the envelopes, as do some photos, participation certificates, ribbons, and the like. This is one thing I am SO glad I started right at kindergarten, and that we've kept up every year. The kids enjoy filling in their information and reading back on years past. My son's book is now complete. I'll have to come up with a similar plan for his high school things!

My daughter brought home all her art work for the year. This is her family crest:
Notice how her shield is in the shape of an open book! She decorated it with things that are important to her: her violin, a baseball, chocolate, and her cat.

She also made this beautiful clay tile:
I love her impressionistic field of flowers behind the tree.

Finally, she made a mask this year. My son also made one in 5th grade. It is a plaster mold of her own face, which she painted to look like the ocean.
All of the fifth-graders' masks decorated the hallway of the school during their promotion ceremony, and after the ceremony the parents were instructed to find their child's mask and take it home. Looking at the masks in profile down the hallway, my daughter's was immediately recognizable to me.
That is definitely her sweet face!

Budget cuts and all that fun stuff have made art in middle school almost an impossibility. The middle schoolers are limited to two electives every year, and if you take music and a foreign language, that eats up your electives. Gym class is squeezed into 6th grade by alternating it every other day with music. She might get to take art for one quarter in 7th grade, but it's not a given. Art has always been one of her favorite things about school, so if she really wants to keep it up, we will have to look at the art classes offered by various art centers in town (which is much less convenient than if she could just do it at school!).