Visions of the other coast… oh, and food.

Seventh graders have just finished a ceramic mask project based on the artwork of the native tribes from the Pacific Northwest. The style in that region reflects the awesome power and liquid beauty of the coastline and ocean.  Students had to incorporate designs from the native tribal styles and use both additive and subtractive sculpture to create their 3D pieces.  They then glazed them with a limited (6 or fewer) palette.  Many north American animals are represented here. Can you find a moose?  A turtle? A bobcat?IMG_1870

The same classes have simultaneously completed small pointillist drawings of food.  Note how the collection of tiny, individual dots of color comes together in our vision to create a cohesive image with light and shadow.  The drawing takes patience but the results are delicate and beautiful.


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Spring has Sprung! At least in the FMS Halls

Inspired by the work of American abstract artist Georgia O’Keefe, the 6th graders have explored the detail of flowers. They zoomed in on small sections of larger images and then blew those small sections up using a light pencil drawing. They then went over those light sketches with watercolor, focusing on blending and tone over realism. The results are a beautiful burst of color in our very grey March.  Enjoy.


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5th grade Sculpture

Mr. Adams’ 5th grade classes looked at the found object sculpture of Maine artist Louise Nevelson. 

They then explored the many ways that emotion can be expressed with abstract shapes. 

Students used many different kinds of objects to create their abstract compositions, then invented creative and subtle titles for their work.

Mr. Adams finished them off with spray paint.

What do these sculptures make you feel?


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Student art at the PMA

Three cheers for FMS seventh grader Emily Charest who has a painting on display at the Portland Museum of Art for their 2017 Youth Art Month exhibition. Students art work from around the state of Maine will be on display until April 7th on the bottom floor of the museum. All grades and mediums are represented and the show is beautiful. Student artists were recognized on Saturday evening and received a certificate from the director of the MAEA and a large crowd of parents and teachers.

Emily’s piece “Reflected Bird” was inspired by the work of Maine artist Dahlov Ipcar. Ipcar’s work is featured prominently at the PMA and I think the artist (who passed away just last month at age 99) would have been pleased to see Emily’s painting.

I encourage all to go see the wonderful art created by Emily and other Maine Youth Artists.

*(for the record, that guy with the scruffy hair in the last photo is Emily’s art teacher. )


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Final Projects from Last term

As we return from break lets start the final term of art with some creativity and bright color. The students in the last term finished up some beautiful pieces including 8th grade teapots that had to both function (perhaps not easily) and showcase creative spirit. They ranged from fruits and veg to animals to movie themes. And they all hold water and pour tea!


Meanwhile, 7th graders were completing paintings of animals inspired by the work of Maine artist and children’s book illustrator Dahlov Ipcar. Ms. Ipcar passed away while the students were immersed in this lesson but I think she would be impressed by their use of warm and cool colors as well as how they expressed the abstract style of the artist. Dahlov Ipcar was a Maine institution and inspiration and will be truly missed.


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Beginning with a simple question, “Can we make big sculptures?” 6th graders explored the concept of abstraction, organic and geometric shapes, and 3 dimensionality in this latest lesson. After an initial planning stage, student teams began building frame works for out of cardboard, tape and hot glue.  They then covered everything in paper maché, a goopy but very fun process, and once dried, painted their pieces in Monochromatic color schemes.  This was a student driven project from start to finish and the results are stunning.


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One last post from the 1st Semester

As we reach the halfway point of the year, 5th grade is switching classes and saying good bye to art. But before a new class takes their place, please enjoy these beautiful coil pots the students created to finish off the term.


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Some Spring Color in Winter’s Darkest Days

6th and 7th graders have finished up lessons just as we ready for winter break.

7th graders worked long and hard on these charcoal self-portraits. Looking at facial proportions, then erasing the light, adding dark shadows, a day on hair, a day on background… all with a messy and sometimes frustrating material.  The results were worth the effort.


Meanwhile, 6th grade students were looking closely (VERY closely) at flowers. Inspired by American painter Georgia O’Keefe, the students zoomed waaaaaay in on flower photos until they created an interesting and somewhat mysterious composition. After a quick and very light pencil drawing they set to work with watercolor. The focus was on flow and blending to create images that, while based on flowers, became abstract images about shape and color. 


Thanks for following our work. See you in 2017!


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Lots MORE new work

So the new schedule, while infinitely clearer and smoother, has presented me with one unexpected challenge: all of my classes tend to finish lessons at approximately the same time. Which means the the blog is now less of a steady stream of incoming artworks and more of a climate which has long dry spells with the occasional deluge of completed projects.  That said, please get comfortable and enjoy the latest from FMS students. Nothing like a blast of color in these dark winter days.

Grade 5 has just finished an abstract watercolor painting inspired by Russian artist, Vassily Kandinsky.


6th grade finished a 2D and a 3D project.  Chinese wish boxes and a traditional still life drawing project with lots of shading.



7th grade worked long and hard on their ceramic Indonesian Masks.


And 8th graders took a POP art twist to the selfie with their Warhol inspired block prints. 


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All around the World

5th graders take us on a tour of world ecosystems, biomes, and landscapes with their new ceramic sculptures. With a focus on three dimensionality they created landmasses molding clay around newspaper then added texture and surface detail.  After the pieces were fired they went back in with a base coat of paint and then layered on lots of small details to create realistic blends of color.  Some of these are so real you want to watch them until the tiny, hidden inhabitants show themselves.


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