The Cube Game

IMG_0218 - Version 2 Last weekend, I tagged along with my colleagues and their two grade 11 IB art classes to Malacca (Melaka), Malaysia (Flickr set here). Students went to gather material for their investigative workbooks. I’m not going to go into the details of the trip, but instead tell you about an activity that they adapted from the book ‘The Cube: Keep the Secret.”  It is a simple game by asking a person to imagine and describe a set of objects. As art teachers, my co-workers got the students to draw instead. Think of it as dream analysis meeting visual literacy.

It goes like this:

Draw 1: Imagine a desert landscape. It is utterly simple. A horizon line. Sand. Sky.

Draw 2: In this desert landscape, there is a cube. See it. Describe it. What size is it? Where is it? What is it made of? (There are no rules, no right or wrong answers. Describe the cube you see.)

Draw 3: Now, in this landscape, as well as the cube, there is also a ladder. Draw its size, position and what it is made of.

Draw 4: In this desert there is also a horse. Draw it. What kind of horse is it? What size? What colour? Where is it relative to the cube and ladder? What is it doing?

Draw 5: Somewhere in this landscape, there is a storm. Draw it. Where is it? What kind of storm is it? How does it affect – or not affect – the cube, the ladder and the horse?

Draw 6: Finally, in this desert are flowers. Draw them. How many are there? What kind? What colour? Where are they in relation to the cube, the ladder, the horse, the storm?

Next students interpret their work, as each element psychologically represents something. This is where it can get funny or really analytical. Allow Freud to step in. My colleagues used this activity to illustrate how the placement of objects in a composition can enhance or contribute to meaning. Unfortunately, I can’t give you the details of this step, as it will spoil the game. If interested, check out the book or refine your google search skills. Sorry for the cliffhanger.

student example:

The Cube student example



Star Wars Uncut Updated & Completed

star wars uncut thumbTo be honest, I completely forgot my friends and I got involved with the Star Wars Uncut project several months ago. To those who do not know, organisers asked people to sign up and remake the original Star Wars movie by contributing 15 second clips. I blogged about it before and showed our clips here and here. Well it looks like the project is now done.

You can watch the entire remake here.

The only problem is that it is a little difficult to fast forward. However, this has to be one of the coolest collaborative projects ever! If I taught film, I would show this to students to demonstrate the different possibilities available. There are low budget clips, even cheaper clips, but there are also some very competent technical clips as well. My only regret is that we didn’t go a little more flash developing ours. Anyway, I have to get back to watching it to see if our clips were included.

Star Wars Collage

This blog has suffered of late as I am taking an online course that is eating up all my free time. I will try to post some relevant ICT stuff soon. In about a month, I will also start planning a new grade 7 unit on collage. To my surprise, I found this video via the excellent Modern Art for Kids blog, which I subscribe to. I love it when the universe aligns like this! Talk about coincidence. It’s a pretty good video and I recommend you check out the blog as well, especially if you teach elementary art.

Jeremy Messersmith – Tatooine from Eric Power on Vimeo.