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Art drawn from text

North Colonie Art and English departments join together to expand minds of students

Students’ works were on display at Shaker High School on Thursday, Oct. 20, to celebrate “The Big Draw,” a month-long national celebration for drawing, and National Day on Writing. Several students produced pieces of art from workshops such as the Computer Graphics, Self Portraits and Digital Photography.

Students’ works were on display at Shaker High School on Thursday, Oct. 20, to celebrate “The Big Draw,” a month-long national celebration for drawing, and National Day on Writing. Several students produced pieces of art from workshops such as the Computer Graphics, Self Portraits and Digital Photography. Photo by Andrew Beam.

— Manzella said the act of drawing a Venn diagram to compare and contrast written pieces allows students to visualize, analyze and interpret, which she said helps in relating to the writing portion. It was a nice opportunity to combine the two worlds of creative thinking, Manzella said, and show they are flip-flopping the idea of using a visual to spark the inspiration to write.

“There are so many applications of the written word and the imagery it conjures up and getting at the mood and the tone that you want the outcome to have whether it is electronic media or painted media,” Manzella said.

The students were not graded on their works, Bonville said, which allowed them to have more freedom in being creative. She said the pressure to create something that grades well was taken away, which allowed students to get comfortable with what they were working on.

“I think the kids really, really liked it,” Bonville said. “They could really tap into their creativity and feel more loose and free. I think it is important to do both (graded and non-graded assignments).”

Manzella said they would love to expand the celebration next year and said she would love to use it as a planning objective at the end of the year for teachers to work on. She even said she would love to see teachers in both departments working together to improve the event.

“It sort of came about as a happy circumstance this year with both departments having a celebration this month,” Manzella said. “If it’s something we can kind of join forces on at the end of next year, to use as a programming objective for our departments, to do some planning over the summer and start the year with definite course work in both areas where we can even merge instead of existing kind of parallel… that would be great.”

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