For the student who is passionate about art, this class builds on the skills acquired in previous TMA classes. Participants will immerse themselves in the world of art for a full year (September – June) of exercises, skill building, and critical thinking. We delve beyond the basic principles and tackle philosophical components of art creation and meaning. Students can expect to experiment with various media while learning the technical skills necessary to create beautiful and meaningful works of art.
**Admission to this class is based upon completion of any two classes offered for 1st grade or higher AND approval from the Fine Art Director.**
AFI classes feature three sections, including drawing, painting, and sculpture. In addition to merely focusing on technical skills, we will introduce the concept of the audience, and the idea that all art is a dialogue between an artist and their viewer. Throughout the year, we will discuss various strategies for evoking specific emotional responses in an audience, and how to do so with the various forms of art. We will hold critiques often, so that students can evaluate their peers’ art, and offer their comments, suggestions and praise. Students can expect to work on one larger “final” project. They will also be given a required materials list, in addition to some recommended materials, which they will be asked to bring to each class. Throughout the year, students may also be asked to purchase some additional materials for more personalized projects.
As AFI students level up, they will be asked to put their skills to practical use. Of course, we will still create some fine art pieces, but we will also be discussing how the knowledge the students have acquired can be utilized in the real world. We will explore and experiment with different art applications such as interior design, graphic design, and special effects makeup. At some point during the year, each student will be expected to prepare and teach a lesson to another class at The Messy Artist. Some projects may require that additional material be brought in from home.
In addition, AFI students are invited to our annual field trips to museums or galleries in the NY/NJ area. They also close out the year with an AFI gallery show at TMA.
AFI INSTALLATION 2017
Although they may feel it in different ways, children and adults alike can experience worry, anxiety, and stress. Stress is a feeling of frustration or anger. It can be annoying or consuming and can rush over a person at any time. It can feel like the mind is exploding and like there is too much to do. Stress is chaos. Today’s world is a busy one, full of things to think about. There are always things to do, and everyone is concerned with “what’s happening next.” Our students made their installation very personal this year. They invite you to explore their minds to see what they think on a daily basis, how they feel about stress, and what they do to relax.
The cloud of cards above is meant to represent the abundance of daily thoughts. There is a mix of positive and negative ideas that are characterized as chaotic, curious, creative, loud, and intense. This duality is always present, because while people are often thinking about happy things, their minds also wander to the problems they face.
Some problems include fears of doing something wrong, not meeting peoples’ expectations, being overwhelmed with homework and concerned about grades, worrying about world events, and even more personal issues like health of family members and a fear of time running out. Sometimes the stress comes from within, but often the stress comes from external sources like their environments and the moods and feelings of the people around them. Technology is a great thing that can enhance our lives, but electronics, social media, and texting can contribute to a more stressful life because communication can often be misinterpreted which causes stress, and many people don’t socialize because of it.
To combat stress, it’s important to take deep breaths, think about other things, do art, play outside in nature, and take comfort in the ability to be with family and talk. People need essential things, like food, water, shelter, friends, and family, but sometimes when there’s too much going on, it’s important to get rid of some things that aren’t necessary. Giving up some old things to remove clutter can clear the mind, and giving up technology for a day can allow the mind to rest.
Students designed this meditative space to oppose the numerous thoughts of the mind so that viewers can take a moment out of their day to relax and see how important it is to do this each day. Relaxing and meditating help you become calm. It can be thought of as white, fuzzy, and warm. Meditation is taking time away from a busy life to focus on oneself. It’s important to clear the head and think happy thoughts. Music can also take people away from stress without them actually leaving anywhere.
Please take a moment to find your “happy place” among the chaos, and may this installation serve as a reminder to do that each day. Doing this allows the happy moments to shine through.