I Love Frank’s Drawings

4 12 2009

Yeah, I love my drawings and I have decided to start early on creating this idea with an art sketchblog. My goal is to do something creative everyday. Meaning, make art; pencil, marker, paint, collage, photography, whatever. This has been a goal of mine for a while now and I thought January 1st would be a good time to start but an earlier date will help me get more in the zone.

I’ve already made a post too! I decided to go with Posterous as my platform and I hope it was the write right decision. You see, my favourite is WordPress and I am a bit addicted to creating categories (blood type A personality). Do I really need to do this considering I have this blog, Flickr, Digication, YouTube and Facebook accounts all going? Maybe. Big ego? Not really. I hope it works out. What I am aiming for is to connect with others. Too often I also make the excuse that I am busy or tired to do art. Yes, that’s kind of true but I am going to try and keep a sketchbook on me at all ‘normal’ times (yeah right) without looking too…well, “arty.” It won’t be great art, but perhaps it will get some creative juices flowing.

If you’re an artist or have artist friends (or students) that have sketchblogs etc, link me up via the blog or via Flickr. Feel free to visit or subscribe via RSS. (Hmm, should I have gone with WordPress?)

i love franks drawings thumb

Blogs to Follow

17 08 2009

It’s a New School Year!

For the best professional development this year, start twittering and get a strangle hold of your RSS feed/Reader. I find Google Reader the easiest. If you already have a gmail account, you are pretty much set.

(video link here)

Everyone asks me for good blogs to follow in order to get information, tools and ideas etc. Some of my choices are:

Art Education Blogs:

Art/Design/Culture Related Blogs:

  • Art Threat: a web magazine about politics and the arts. They write about political art of all genres, discuss policy as it pertains to culture, and showcase artists whose work inspires social change.
  • Better Posters: a resource for improving poster presentations.
  • Drawn!: an illustration and cartoon blog.
  • Hongkiat: tips for tech users, designers and bloggers.
  • IllustrationClass.com: provides info on the illustrative design process.
  • Jilian Tamaki Sketchbook: An online collection of doodles, sketchbook work, and occasional process sketches.
  • Just Creative Design: offers tips on graphic, web and logo design.
  • Presentation Zen: Garr Reynolds giving tips on design for better presentations.
  • Slide:ology: Design blog
  • Smashing Magazine: Offers advice, tutorials and inspiration on design and technology.
  • Toxel: Offers great thematic pictures on culture, graphic design, art and lifestyle.
  • WebUrbanist: Offers pics on urban design, culture, travel, architecture and alternative art.

IT/Educational Blogs:

  • Digital Ethnography: a Kansas State University working group led by Dr. Michael Wesch dedicated to exploring and extending the possibilities of digital ethnography.

Other Great Websites/Blogs/Nings I follow/belong to: Tuts, Art21, Flowing Data, Art Education 2.0, Daniel H. Pink,

I hope this helps and you find what you are looking for. I’d love to hear any other recommendations you might have as well.

Teacher Blogging, Wikis and Embeds

2 05 2009

Following on from my post about Creativity 2.0 and web tools to use in your class, comes Best Embeds for Educational Wikis and Blogs from Making Teachers Nerdy. She offers similar tastes on options available for embeddable tools on your site. They are broken down into:

  • Collaborative Project Tools
  • Communication Tools
  • Photos
  • Student Products
  • Video

Go have a look. I was glad to find Calameo as an alternative to Issuu. Calameo allows you to create digital books that also allow video and audio. Sign up required.

How do you find stuff?

26 04 2009

Following on from my Creativity 2.0 post yesterday, a small dialogue began towards the end of my presentation. It was cut short as people had to get to their next event. Everyone (myself included) wants to know how to find those useful 2.0 tools or sites of relevance for teaching. Unfortunately, there is no magic way. Basically, we have to spend some time looking. However, word of mouth works best.

I am not a big fan of the sites/tools littered with ads that target kids to click at banners so I usually do not post about them. There are a lot of meaningless litter sites available to keep kids occupied, but again, I do not post those either. In order to find sites, I first read other tech blogs. Check my tag cloud or categories list for free software, but the good stuff has been posted to the wiki I used here.

Some of the tech blogs I subscribe to are 21st Century Learning, Moving at the Speed of Creativity, iLearnTechnology, 2centsWorth and Learning with Lucie. There are several other sites too. Some good, some bad. I also have a slew of art blogs I subscribe to as well. These ones are much more interesting as they often showcase lesson ideas and student work more concretely. The best thing to do is check who these bloggers link with. What are they reading?

Have a look at Go2Web2.0WebTools4u2use and Web 2.0 Tools for ideas. When I go to various sites, I also look through some of the examples. Look at how users are using it. What are they saying? As a teacher, you will ultimately have to decide if it useful, if you can use it in your class or if you can use it in new creative ways. Try asking your students what they use too. You may be surprised. Another option is to join Diigo. It’s a social bookmarking site that lets you highlight stuff on the web. If you don’t join, you could use their search to see what other people find interesting. Remember though, pedagogy first, tools second.

Build up your Personalised Learning Network (PLN) through blogging, nings or twitter. Craig Roland just published an article for School Arts magazine on this. I couldn’t agree with him more. It’s worth your time reading. You may think all this takes too much time, but trust me, it’s the best professional and personal development you can have. I began blogging and expanding my PLN in August 2008 and I have learnt more from this process than any PD session I have attended. The key is who you follow.

Seriously consider starting your own blog. For me, blogging is not easy. I’m not the best writer and I’m still trying to find my voice on this blog as well. Technically, I don’t blog, I post. There is a big difference. I need to actually do more blogging. You can think whether to start off small or to dive right in. One post a week? One post a month? Currently I am reflecting if I blog (I mean, post) too much. Does it turn off subscribers? Do I annoy them? Is the content useful?

Anyway, good luck and don’t get discouraged. Now that I gave away all of my little secrets, shall I assume you will no longer return here?

; )

photo credits: