The trees just finished blossoming in vibrant pinks and clean whites in our little part of the world. It is so spectacular I had to bring in some of the blossoms to decorate my desk. The next day I found hiding in a drawer a silk scarf one of my students brought back for me from his trip to his home, China. It had beautiful and delicate cherry blossoms painted on it! They looked similar to the ones on my desk. While browsing through books I found this beautiful book called Zen Shorts that totally captivated me with it's illustrations. This might be the perfect time to read it!
I feel like I'm constantly simmering with ideas that are waiting for the right time and place to make their debut.
In the book there are tons of beautiful illustrations some done in watercolor and some in stylized ink (they remind me of chinese calligraphy.) The book also tells about a Zen approach to the world. The stories teach the polar opposite of what most of the students are taught at home. This non confrontational approach to solving problems was just what I wanted to share with this particular group this week.
A perfect storm! The book Zen Shorts, the blossoms, the silk scarf and I had the beginnings of this new and exciting lesson. We used ink pooled in a line down the paper and blew it with a straw to make thinner branches. We mixed white and red to make the vibrant pink blossoms. Finally students folded it over a stick and tied a piece of twine to make their hanging scroll. I am still working on this project for next year. Although the results are beautiful, I still feel like the lesson could benefit from another level of self expression. I will let it simmer, but until then let me know what you think and if you have any ideas of how to add more individuality to the pieces. This is a new lesson and a "work in progress."
|Japanese Cherry Blossoms|
|Display of hanging scrolls.|