Dear You Art Project

Mail Art + Pen Friends = Dear You Art Project

2019

Transposing friends in Kokkola from Bulli

2019, Australia, FinlandArlene TuckerComment
Nell’s transposition of Alisa.

Nell’s transposition of Alisa.

The students here at Bulli Public School were very excited to see pictures of their art buddies (or “pen pals” as they’ve been saying). They were amazed that a lot of the qualities that they wrote about themselves (friendly, creative, funny, brave, etc) where also qualities that their Finnish friends also mentioned. We’re all different but the same !

For Dear You Project 2 we began by discussing what we thought about the person portrayed in the picture, and what emotions that came to mind. Initially common traits were spoken about, like “funny, nice, cool, friendly”. I encouraged them to think deeper, and to analyse what that person might be like if they met them in person. This prompted better responses like “wonderful, shy, helpful, imaginative, compassionate”.

Next, based on the range of transposition methods outlined in the YouTube clip supplied, we chose to trace onto blank paper via back lighting provided by a window. I modelled how to do this, emphasising how important it was to sketch every line and shadow, and not simply draw the outline of the person’s face. After the sketching stage I encouraged them to write down the qualities that they observed from the transposed image, and to add colour via pencils and pastel crayons.

After finishing the artworks, I encouraged them to write a message to their Finnish friends, in an effort to get to know them better. We used google translator to write our questions in Finnish.

After reflecting on the finished artworks the students observed that the personality traits a person has are the same no matter if the image is a photo, or a sketch. Also students noted that the transposed sketch intensified the emotions or feelings that the picture showed. For example, if a person looked “kind” from observing the photograph, the person looked even more so in the sketch. An interesting revelation for them.

Regards,
Jeremy Gudze 

1/2G Classroom Teacher
Bulli Public School

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The 2nd graders from Mäntykankaan koulun in Kokkola, Finland are making and sharing art with the 1st and 2nd graders from Bulli Public School in Bulli, Australia.

"The Early Bird Gets The Word"

2019, 2nd Grade, FinlandArlene TuckerComment
Hello! Here are we in Mäntykangas School in Kokkola, Finland 2a. We would like to tell about ourselves with 3 words. We will take some photos for you with mirrors on Friday. The weather is so awful today and I am afraid, it is raining for a long.... anyways, lots of love.
— Auli Palosaari
Curiosity, Bravery, Perseverance

Curiosity, Bravery, Perseverance

Hei!

Olemme tutustuneet vahvuuksiin, joita itsessämme tunnistamme ja löydämme. Oppilaat saivat valita kolme erilaista vahvuutta, joilla haluavat kertoa itsestään australiaisille ystävillemme. Luokassamme vieraili tiistaina myös suuri joukko australialaisia rehtoreita, joille esittelimme projektiamme. Käänsimme vahvuudet englanniksi ja liitimme kuviimme englanninkieliset tekstit. Luokassani on useita tehostettua tukea tarvitsevaa lasta, joten jo tämä edellä mainittu on ollut haastavaa ja vienyt tavattoman paljon aikaa. Emme ole vieläkään päässet ulos valokuvaamaan, koska mm. vierailujen ja koulun muun ohjelman ja yhteisten päällekkäisten projektien takia on ollut talossamme hyvin kiireistä ja koulupäivät sirpaleisia. Olin itse 3 päivää pois The Early Bird Gets The Word- varhennetun englannin kielen koulutuksessa ja senkin takia pakka on hieman sekaisin luokassani. Projekti pääsi alun alkaen myöhässä alkamaan, koska asian käsittely ja luvan (maksusitoumuksen saanti) koulun johdossa viipyi. Nyt on ollut kaksi oppilaiden arviointikeskusteluviikkoa ja olen tavannut jokaisen lapsen vanhemmat koulupäivän jälkeen . Olen kertonut projektista ja kysellyt kuvauslupia. Kaikilta en ole vieläkään saanut vastausta.

Sää on ollut pari päivää myrskyisä ja sateinen, emmekä senkään takia ole päässeet vielä kuvaamaan ipadeilla ulkona. Odottelen valokuvaaja, kuvataiteilija Joni Virtaselta vastausta, milloin hän ehtii tulla luokkaamme opettamaan kuvausta ja kertomaan ammatistaan. Vahvuuksia olemme käsitellet joka päivä eri oppiaineissa. ( Olen kuvataideopettaja, mutta myös perusopetuksen luokanopettaja, joten projektista olisi helppo tehdä kokonaisuus, jos ei olisi nyt niin paljon muuta opetusta rajoittavaa toimintaa koulussamme.

Viikko 42 on syyslomaviikko ja viikko 43 uimaopetusviikko, jolloin kävelemme joka päivä uimahallille uimaopetukseen ja takaisin, joten niillä viikoilla ei taideopetusta voi pitää. Toivottavasti saamme kuvat otetuksi ensi viikolla, ettemme jää projektista enempää jälkeen. Tahti tuntuu tälle integraatioluokalleni aika kiireiseltä. Jos olisi vain tämä projekti normaaliopetuksen tukena, suoriutuisimme aikataulussa, mutta nyt on tässä yhtälössä ollut liian monta muuttujaa. Pahoittelen!

Kaikesta huolimatta olemme projektista innoissamme ja on todella ihanaa tutustua australialaiseen kouluun projektin kautta. Kartasta olemme jo tutkineet, missä Bullin koululaiset fyysisesti ovat ja australian eläimiin mm.kenguruihin, vesinokkaeläimiin, vompatteihin ja nokkasiiliin tutustuimme ympäristöopin tunnilla.

Olemme myös ihastelleet sitä vauhtia, joilla nykyään saa ihan reaaliajassa yhteyden toiselle puolelle maapalloa. Rehtori mrs Paker lähetti Bullin koululle sähköpostia luokassamme ja sai samantien vastauksen! Kaikkein riemukkainta oli tutustua Bullin koulun lähettämiin kuviin ja kertomukseen projektin toteuttamisesta! ´Täällä sateen ja myrskyn keskellä totsesimme, että toisella puolella maailmaa onkin kesä! Onnittelemme Australiaa naisten keihäänheiton maailmanmestaruudesta. Keihäänheitto on aikaisemmin ollut meidän suomalaisten laji ja nyt te saitte mestaruuden! Great!

Tapaan vielä tänään australialaiset rehtorit toisen taideprojektini merkeissä. Teemme Kokkola 400v. juhlan kunniaksi rintamerkkejä paikallisessa ravintolassa illallisen jälkeen.

Lots of love,
Auli ja 2a

Love, Forgiveness, Bravery

Love, Forgiveness, Bravery

Hey!

We have gotten to know the strengths we identify and find within ourselves. The students were given three different strengths to tell about themselves to our Australian friends. On Tuesday, a large group of Australian principals also visited our class to present our project. We translated our strengths into English and included English texts in our pictures. We have a number of students with special needs in our classroom, so the above has been challenging and time-consuming. We still can't get out of photography because visits and the rest of the school program and common overlapping projects have made our house very busy and school days fragmented. I was 3 days away in The Early Bird Gets The Word Early English Training and that's why the pack is a bit messy in my class. The project started late due to delays in processing and obtaining permission (commitment) from the school management. Now it's been two weeks students' evaluation of the debate, and I have met with the parents after the school day for each child. I have told about the project and asking description permits. I still haven't got an answer from everyone.

The weather has been turbulent and rainy for a couple of days, and we haven't been able to shoot it on the ipads for a while either. I'm waiting for photographer, visual artist Joni Virtanen to answer when he will come to our class to teach photography and tell us about his profession. We deal with strengths every day in different subjects. (I'm an art teacher, but also basic education teacher, so the project would be easy to make a whole, if it were not now so much more restrictive teaching activities at our school.

Week 42 is Autumn Holiday Week and Week 43 is a swimming lessons week, where we go to the swimming pool every day for swimming lessons and back, so there is no art education in those weeks. We hope we get the pictures taken next week so we won't miss the project any more. The pace seems quite busy for my integration class. If only this project were to support normal education, we would be on schedule, but now there have been too many variables in this equation. I apologize!

Nonetheless, we are excited about the project and it is really wonderful to get to know the Australian school through the project. From the map, we've already explored where Bull's schoolchildren are physically located, and we've learned about Australian animals such as kangaroos, waders, waders and bumble bees in an environmental lesson.

We have also admired the speed with which you can now connect to the other side of the globe in real time. Principal Mrs. Paker emailed Bull's school in our classroom and received a reply immediately! The most joyful thing was to see the pictures sent by the Bulli School and the story of the project! 'Here in the midst of rain and storm, we said it was summer on the other side of the world! Congratulations to Australia on the world championship in women's spear throwing. Spear throwing has been our Finn's kind in the past and now you got the championship! Great!

I still meet Australian principals today for my second art project. We make Kokkola 400v. to celebrate the badges with a badge at a local restaurant after dinner.

Lots of love,
Auli ja 2a

Perseverance, Leadership Skills, Sense of Humour

Perseverance, Leadership Skills, Sense of Humour

The 2nd graders from Mäntykankaan koulun in Kokkola, Finland are making and sharing art with the 1st and 2nd graders from Bulli Public School in Bulli, Australia.

Artists from Australia make art from “Words that describe me”

2019, 8 years olds, 9 years old, Australia, Dear You Art Workshops, FinlandArlene TuckerComment

The students really enjoyed the first Dear You project. 

Firstly, we spoke about the word translation, and what it means to communicate verbally or visually over long distances. I showed the class a map of the world and showed them where Finland is, they were excited that our artworks will be travelling so far around the world. 

I showed the class some photographic portraits and discussed what the pictures are translating to a viewer. We got a little stuck on visual appearances, many of the responses were superficial, for example “tall, smiling, happy, sad”. I had to encourage them to look beyond the outward appearance and try to decipher what the person may be thinking. After this guidance some deeper thinking became apparent and the students commented that the people in the examples were “lonely, determined, excited, responsible”.

I then gave the sheet and asked them to write down “Words that describe me …”. I modelled a few examples on the board to assist with spelling. They first wrote down what words that they think about themselves, then I encouraged them to brainstorm, walk around the room and ask their peers what they think that they translate to the world around them.

We then spoke about photography and how we could translate these attributes into a photograph, we talked about using perspective, props, light and shade to communicate meaning to a viewer. We practised picking objects around the room (e.g. book, pencil, chair) to use as props, experimented with our body position to communicate a feeling (e.g. looking away from the camera, blocking our face with our hands, leaning into or away from the camera, etc).

I asked the class to prepare props and choose a site in which to have their picture taken. Once they were ready I took their photograph with the school’s digital camera. I invited them to either take the picture indoors or outdoors, I feel like this was a setback because the majority of the students outside choose to perform athletic tricks/moves/positions, rather than communicate an emotion or feeling like we had spoken about earlier. If I did this again I would ask them to create both an indoor picture and an outdoor picture. This strategy would produce improved results I feel.

Nell, choose to communicate “Sensitive”

Nell, choose to communicate “Sensitive”

I printed the photographs, the students cut them to size and glued them onto the sheets. I asked them to underline what single attribute of themselves they were attempting to translate to the viewer of the picture.

On the back of the sheet the students all wrote a short message to their “sister class” in Finland, “Hei”!

Regards,
Jeremy Gudze 

1/2G Classroom Teacher
Bulli Public School

Harvey, choose to communicate “Brave”

Harvey, choose to communicate “Brave”

The 2nd graders from Mäntykankaan koulun in Kokkola, Finland are making and sharing art with the 1st and 2nd graders from Bulli Public School in Bulli, Australia.

Dear You as part of InSEA's ocean of food for thought!

2019Arlene TuckerComment
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The European InSEA 2018 congress proceedings publication has been published! Arlene Tucker presented on behalf of Dear You during the congress in Finland, in June 2018. The abstract from the presentation, Dear You: Shared Spheres in Creative Spaces was written by Anastasia Artemeva and Arlene Tucker. It can be read on pages 891-892 of Synnyt-Origins, InSEA Congress 2018: Scientific and Social Interventions in Art Education.

Mira Kallio-Tavin and Oleksandra Sushchenko (co-editors of the issue) have “divided the issue thematically according to the congress themes and between peer reviewed and non-peer reviewed submissions, and visual essays and full papers. The rest of the presentations are published as abstracts. All in all, the publication includes 325 submissions and it takes 1473 pages.”

The link to the issue: https://wiki.aalto.fi/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=148283892

Feeling very honored to have been a part of Synnyt-Origins where I could meet so many talented, creative, and encouraging art educators from around the world!

With love,
Dear You

Do you have Jellyfish in Ireland?

2019, 3 years old, 4 years old, 5 years old, 6 years old, 7 years old, 8 years olds, 9 years old, 10 years old, 11 years old, AustraliaArlene TuckerComment
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After life had taken a hold of us all here in Australia with the colder weather upon us, two of the families finally managed to meet for our second session.

All were super excited to open the parcel from Ireland and see what our friends had sent. They were very impressed with the drawings but also with the information that they conveyed. They all started asking so many questions, which was great because that was exactly what today’s session was about!

After introducing different types of graphics and typography the group got to work on the question/s they wanted to ask. They all naturally began by drawing what their interests were and the question they wanted to ask their Irish friends came later in text form.

Due to the age range from 3 to 11 the questions varied from ‘Do you have Jellyfish in Ireland’, ‘Do you like swimming?’, ‘Do you like rain?’ and ‘Do you like monsters?’

Looking forward to the next session seeing what our friends have to say.

Amal Laala

The home schoolers in Geelong, Australia are making and sharing with the homeschoolers in Derreen, Ireland.

Integrating Celtic calligraphy into our art

2019, Mixed age groupArlene TuckerComment
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On this 2nd project "The Art of Asking Questions" we provided for inspiration a couple of printed letter books. One with old fashion printing fonts and the other with intrinsic Celtic calligraphy. Also letter stamps and different art materials brushes, watercolour and acrylics, oil pastels...and so on. We talked about friendship and what sort of interests do they share with their friends and what would they like to know about their new friends in Australia. They were asked to incorporate one question only in their art work which took them a while to decide since naturally they were curious about many things. It was suggested to add a letter with their artwork if they thought a question was too little to express. But eventually they were happy with painting while talking about all the possible questions. The interesting thing was in order to cultivate this friendship they thought of asking questions about their opinions on certain topics. Topics that are relevant to them now and not so much about differences of lifestyles between Australia and Ireland which we also talked about but they decided to focus on what do they have in common instead of what it was different.

Another enjoyable session that could have last for hours. Thank you!

Marta, Carol & Gabrielle

Derreen home schoolers in Derreen, Ireland are making and sharing art with the homeschoolers in Geelong, Australia.

Artists from Australia gather for a day of making art!

2019, AustraliaArlene TuckerComment
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We began home schooling our 6 year old daughter last year and were thrown into a new area where we have bonded with some wonderful families here in Geelong, Australia. As an artist myself I had been thinking of doing workshops with a small group of the community and Dear You seemed like a great way to begin the journey.

 

I asked two other families to join us as a pilot (so we could all fit into my house) and we began. The kids were all excited to see each other so they had a run around and catch up - as did us mums – and then we gathered around the table. We began by discussing about ourselves and about what uniqueness means. Many of them wanted to get into the activity and were shy to discuss so after a short discussion we began drawing and each talking while we worked about our travels, the things we like and our body parts. They were all interested in learning more about Ireland, the other group and children. They were not sure exactly what to share but enjoyed the notion of someone far away sending them something.

 

Next session we will incorporate geography and speak about the country and area our friends are from. Also showing them what our friends have sent them will encourage them to share more about themselves as it all seems much more real. Looking forward to the next meet up and in getting something special in the mail.

Amal Laala

The home schoolers in Geelong, Australia are making and sharing with the homeschoolers in Derreen, Ireland.

The artists from Ireland creatively show their friends in Australia just how unique they are!

Mixed age group, 2019, IrelandArlene TuckerComment
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We gathered one morning with our group, 6 children and 3 of the parents who have been growing together for the past 11 years. Over the years our process of learning, living in close proximity, friendships and communing has been changing and shaping the way we all learn and enjoy sharing our time. We have been inspired throughout the years by the aliveness of each of the children here and their self directed learning.

From that place we met in the spirit of connecting with this group of homeschoolers in Australia, all the children were curious and excited. The artistic part of the project was free and enjoyable, with no expectations or final outcomes, just a beginning of connecting and sharing, and who knows how this unfolds… Coming together individually with a communal vision seemed to have a playful tone that stayed throughout the session.

On the first proposal they were invited to explore the idea of uniqueness and draw a self portrait using a graphite transfer technique. We noticed the importance of setting some ground principles of respect and care, and non-judgemental comments on each other’s work. We talked about Perseus paradox and that made us move from the physical differences to more metaphysical concepts. Due to the nature of our group, being small numbers and not in a classroom environment, our conversations were very informal. But they were also very focused on their work. Some struggled with the instructions as wanting to express themselves more freely. They were all able to create a piece that said something about themselves and their uniqueness and they were enthusiastic about sharing it with someone else.  Also eager to receive the artworks from the other kids in Australia. I think they were all happy to participate in creating connexions through art.

Cheers,
Marta, Carol & Gabrielle

Derreen home schoolers in Derreen, Ireland are making and sharing art with the homeschoolers in Geelong, Australia.