February 10th I had the privilege to work with students at Stevenson High School during the Odyssey 2016. Every two years, Stevenson suspends its regular school day to offer a world class fine arts festival. 160 artist get to share their skills and talents with the student body of Stevenson High.Hands-on workshops, presentations, and performances in Dance, Media, Music, Theater, Visual Arts and much more are offered.
I had the opportunity to share silk painting during 3 workshops with over 20 students each. We created 8×8″ silk paintings which were ironed on to paper once finished. Engaging with students is something I truly enjoy and these workshops were no different. I had video taped a tutorial for this day and our son Joshua edited and enhanced it for me. .This was a great aid as each group was rather large. So, taking full advantage of the technical advantages provided by the school, I was able to run the tutorial on the large screen in the room – easy for all to see. While listening to calming music in the background, the students were given control over the silk only by the amount of dye/water on their brushes. The rest was an interaction between the student and the silk. Some were surprised by the reaction of the silk, some quickly figured out how to keep it under control, some couldn’t care less and just went for the joy of spreading dye, some became intimidated because the silk did not react the way they thought it would. But in the end, 70 beautiful, individual silk pieces had been created. Each was different, each left an imprint of the students personality, and students left with smiles on their faces.
I think it was a successful day.