Sunday, April 15, 2007


I Introductions
Take a moment to introduce yourself :)
your major, your field of interest, what you most like to do in visual art and since we are going to have an "Earth Day theme" this morning - any environmental issues or reflections - did you ever say, work for an environment.

The goal today is to produce one new image to contribute to the campus Earth Day event 4/23. We will print the images on 4x6" postcard paper so people could potentially use them to mail, or just for decoration/inspiration. Since it's a short time period, try to keep it very simple. If we don't have time to print during class, I'll print afterwards. At some point before you leave, please email me,, so I can add you to the blog and you can post the results of your work.

II Art & Environmental Activism
A Glimpse at Recent Trends

Performance Art/Installation
Helene Aylon
Earth Ambulance, 1982

W. Eugene Smith,
Aileen Mioko Sprauge Smith, Ishikawa Takesh, documenting environmental pollution, mercury poisoning in Minamata,Japan in the 1970s. Was beaten for this.

Fifty Crows: Social Change Photography,
exemplifies a tradition in photography in the belief in the power of the photo essay to effect change. Web site includes resources for collaboration on topics.
John Ganis, Consuming the American Landscape

Desktop publishing in a Mass Media format
John Craig Freeman, embracing new technologies in Operation Greenrun II, drawing media attention, 1990s

Community Collaboration
Reiko Goto: Collaborates with Tim Collins. Establishing an Multi-disciplinary model of artistic environmental activism in the community, working with business people, citizens, planners, scientists, artists. Long term project, 9 Mile Run,

Using Economic Systems as Art
Amy Balkin: Public Smog, art and capitalism, purchases carbon credits for clean air space.

Postcard Example
Steffi Domike and Ann Rosenthal, Postcards from the S[ub]lime
"These postcards frame our ongoing investigation into disparities between an idealized American landscape and the social and natural histories buried behind the pretty pictures.
The photographic images are digitally manipulated to mimic the hand-colored look of early postcards." close up of images

III Strategies for Presentation

The Barbara Kruger approach, large monotone images, bold text in block

Focus your message, check out the, "Create your own print ad"

Experiment with Graphic Forms/Check out these exhibits:
The Center for the Study for Political Graphics, Los Angeles, has an environmental exhibit section
The Graphic Imperative: International Posters for Peace and Social Justice
Poster show with section on the environment

Political Photomontage/Juxtaposing images to make a point
Developed by John Heartfield 1920s, Germany. Getty Show "Agitated Images" has examples.

Experiment with Type/Word as part of the Image
Type Design: El
Early 20th Century Russian Designer - creative use of type on page.

IV Brainstorming (unless everyone has pre-set ideas)
With your group/partner, spend 10 minutes (5 per person) interviewing about thoughts on Earth Day/Environment. Ask the tone the person wants to use for this project, images they might have on file, or how they could get them from the web.

A few approaches:
-Political (as in Craig Freeman)
-Educational (the Ad Council)
-Mock Advertising (like in
-Spiritual/Poetic ( a lot of artists celebrate environment, purely positive imagery as seen in Ansel Adams photographs)
-Other (experimental, personal narrative, surrealistic, a methodology consistent with what you have been doing in other studio areas.........

V - Open Studio Time
I will go around and speak with you individually about your process. Take breaks as needed. Remember, this is a short project.

Page Set up specifications:

Save as tiff and place in MS Word. Use tools > labels Avery 5389, 4x6" postcard

VI - Wrap up
Post up images for everyone to see - or on screen and we'll print later, depending on time.
If you want to meet later today to review your web portfolio, I"m happy to do that.

Thank you for sharing your creative thoughts this morning!!! Have a great year!!


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