Tropical Birds

Tropical birds are one of the most beautiful birds in the world.  The colors on their feathers are simply fascinating.  This makes these birds a wonderful subject for art works.   In this lesson, we will explore the use of oil pastel and watercolor in art making. Click to view the full hand out on tropical birds.

We also tried this lesson on canvas using acrylic during the Summer Arts and Crafts Workshop 2016.  Here are the students’ works:

tropical birds 1

tropical birds 2


A Cultural Celebration

Every August, the whole country celebrates Buwan ng Wika (National Language Month). But we do not only celebrate the beauty of the Filipino language. Oh no! We go beyond that. We also celebrate the richness of the Filipino culture.  Afterall, its
what makes it more fun in the Philippines.
To kick off Buwan ng Wika, here are a few art projects my third and fourth graders made.


The vintas are traditional boats found near the Philippine island of Mindanao. It has a sail with assorted vertical colors that represent the colorful culture and history of the Muslim community.




The Ifugao Rice Gods locally known as Bulul are carved wooden figures used to guard the rice crop by the Igorot people of northern Luzon. These Bulul portraits are inspired from the rich culture of the Ifugao.



These masskara paintings are inspired from one of the grandest feasts of the Philippines, the Masskara Festival, held each year in Bacolod (The City of Smiles).


Character Landscapes


Two weeks of classes and my students are already radiating with creativity! During our first club meeting, I wanted the members from different grade levels to get to know each other, at the same time, start off with the first art project.  While quickly browsing through pinterest, I found this cool idea, decided to make a little modification to fit a 1 hour and 30 minute class, and called the project “Character Landscapes”.


The procedures are quite simple. The students were asked to share some of their good traits to their groupmates first.  The students were then asked to draw some curved lines across the paper. In between the spaces of each line, each member was asked to write the best trait they have. All the lines were  then traced with black or brown oil pastel. Finally, all the spaces were painted with watercolor or a thin layer of poster paint. Here are examples of the art club’s output.

The Journal Journey: Why I Decided to Keep an Art Journal

art journal1

These past few weeks has been super duper busy (A month of in-service training, curriculum alignment with DepEd’s K-12 program and classroom preparations for the upcoming school year). I’m just so gkad I now have the time to sit down and write. I was feeling a bit sad a few days ago, when the teachers’ class schedule was given- my class time and the club time were conflicted. I had to process myself into accepting that this school year, I’d be taking a leave from the arts and crafts club. Thankfully, the schedule was revised and I’m back as the club’s moderator with the ever so creative teacher Lhee. Yay!
This school year, teacher Lhee and I will be asking our club members to keep an art journal. I knew a lot of famous artists kept one, but I just personally started having one last month (The only journal I’ve ever kept before was a gratitude journal. I’m the kind who loves counting my blessings. That’s why.)
Yes, despite of being passionate about arts, I never really kept an art journal before. Most of the time, I’d imagine artworks. Sone of it make it on some pieces of paper, on a canvas or on my sketch pad, but most of it really just stayed on my head and got forgotten.
So here are the reasons why I decided to keep an art journal and why teacher Lhee and I will be encouraging iur members to keep one.
1. There are times when what I thought of as not so good ideas turn out to be great ideas after all. We know not when something “ordinary” could turn “extraordinary”. I thought it would be good (and fun) if I could just put on paper what’s inside my head. It doesn’t have tobe perfect.
2. This one is mainly the reason why I started keepping one.  Art journals are all about self-expression. I think its pretyy awesome to put on paper whats on my mind. There are times when words are simply not enough to express a thought, a feeling, or a memory. I just have to make an artwork out of it.
Here’s one entry from my journal.

art journal 2

I drew this picture as a response to an instagram post with a caption: ‘a little crocodile fell in love with a hibiscus’. It made me wonder what could have happened to them, so I started doodling this so called “sequel”.
Here’s another one:

art journal 3

I made this journal entry a few days ago. I was missing my high schook friends and I remembered how much we loved everything about anime before. We used to make comic books and anime avatars of ourselves. So I drew this on my journal and decided to post it on FB. It was great how my friends commented on how they also missed high school days as well.
3. I decided to keep an art journal for fun and relaxation (and perhaps for a lack of better things to do at times). There are times when I would get bored, and I would grab a sheet of paper and doodle. I don’t know, it just feels like playing when I’m at it. There are also times when I’m super stressed. I relax my mind (and my heart) by making an artwork. These works of art, when made on sheets of paper, eventually end up being thrown out. I thought why not put it on a journal? I’m sure it would be fun to flip its pages and see the stuff in there later on.
Let me share another entry

art journal 4

I doodled this while I was attending a seminar. It was not the speaker, its just that my attention span is quite short. So my mind wandered into thinking about sunflowers and blessings.🙂
4. I think keeping an art journal is a good creative exercise. There are times when I get so busy, I don’t have the time to do a proper artwork. I’ve always adhered to the saying that constant practice leads to mastery (sorry, teacher mode). If one wants to be a great pianist, one has to constantly practice playing the piano. In the same way, if one wants ro be a great artist, one has to constantly exercise one’s skills and creativity. I think that even if we’re not aiming to be a Picasso, and even as adults, we should not stop exercising our creativity.  This is the main reason why teacher Lhee and I want our students to keep an art journal. Through out the school year, academic pressure gets in the way and perhaps keeping an art journal would help them exercise the right brain.

art journal 5

So thats about it. I’m so excited for the start of classes this week. I’ll keep you posted with the kids’ journal entries (if they allow me to post it). XoXo.