Week 4 of Art Camp – jetlag, the eclipse, and pizza

Well hello there, it has been way too long. I never manage to blog while in London, I’m not even going to feign any effort on my part regarding writing a post. I get too overwhelmed by the experience of being back in my hometown, seeing familiar sights, hearing familiar sounds, smelling familiar smells (yuck), and just being supremely happy.

I will post more about my travels soon, I always do, as you can see from this post from last year, and several other posts exhorting you to travel to London with your kids.

I can’t get enough of the place.

Anyway, I digress. This blog is about last week’s camp – the last Noctiluna Art camp of this summer! Seeing as this was the last week before school, I kept things loose and relaxing. To make things even more loose and relaxing, a little event known as the Great American Solar Eclipse,that I had totally forgotten about (read:jetlag), stopped work for most of Monday. The kids watched the live streams from NASA, ate eclipse themed cookies (they were black and white okay?), and used pinhole viewers to view the eclipse (that is, when they weren’t secretly napping due to a lack of good daylight).


The theme for the week was clay models and cartooning (well, actually, the theme was really Morph, but that doesn’t sound as impressive). If you do not know who or what Morph is, stop everything right now and go to the Morph YouTube channel. You can also find out about the lovely little character on the Aardman animation website. It is his 40th anniversary, and I consider him to be the grandfather of Wallace and Gromit, and all those other great Aardman characters. Unsurprisingly, the kids fell in love with him, and with the other Aardman animations that we watched in the name of design education – wink, wink. Have a look at what they produced:

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We modeled our own characters out of plasticine, and photographed them in different scenarios – striking action poses, and interacting with each other. We talked about how animation works, and about persistence of vision, and made flip books. Some of us made  thaumatropes that sometimes worked, and sometimes didn’t. The weather was beautiful, so we spent a lot of time outdoors playing games and climbing trees.  We pulled faces in mirrors, and drew cartoon expressions. We made our own comic strips, and had a pizza party on the last day – I’m always up for a party!

I feel as if we have only just scratched the surface of this topic, so we will definitely revisit animation and cartooning in next year’s camps, and do a little stop motion animation as well. The week went way too fast! Now my lovely campers are back at school, and I’m back at my desk. I hope the year goes well for all of you. Next year’s camps are really only around the corner. See you soon!

 

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