Inspiration – when least expecting it.

Do yourself a favour and watch the Netflix docuseries entitled ABSTRACT.  It’s about artists, designers and typographists.  I’m not an art teacher, per se, but the approach that true creative souls take is inspiring to observe. My brain was on overdrive – how can I take the importance of a visual approach and make it classroom applicable?

I’ve been thinking a lot about visual literacy lately.  The ability to read and understand imagery is such an underrated skill, yet we see images and already make decisions before we even read the associated text.

If the point of writing is to share an idea or evaluation, it is useless if you first don’t grab an audience.  How do you grab an audience with words?  You attach imagery.

Time to get creative.  Ideas?

Imagery from community settings as backgrounds for poetry (and yes – contrast and font choice are crucial and set the mood for the audience).  Creative imagery with digitial manipulation to change how you look at ordinary objects.  Text overlay.  Finding fonts from signs on the street and thinking about typography and applying to student pieces on advertising.  Inserting yourself into settings you’ve drawn or photographed.  Then using that photo as your next greenscreen background so that a student can appear twice in the same photo.  Apply thought bubbles and twitter hashtags.  Create a written piece where font changes from line to line.  How are fonts selected to create emphasis at the right time?  Playbills!

I love the idea of addressing audience when completing a poetry, writing, media or non fiction piece.  It’s hard to get ‘just right’, but training these grade 4’s to consider impact is a cool process to dive into.  Talk about inserting student voice into literacy!

I’m so thankful I live in the world of digital photography, google drawings and piccollage.

Watch these shows and be inspired by people who don’t follow rules and create original content every single day. Their mindset is infectious.

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