I received an email from a mother/son app developing team based in Bulgaria yesterday.  Marina and Hrisoto Staykov released the app Amaziograph and thought I might find it to be a useful app in the art room.  They generously gifted their app to me to explore, and let's just say I was hooked immediately!  

This app takes me back to the days when I taught my students how to create tessellations using paper and markers.  The discovery of the Amaziograph app is inspiring me to want to teach how to create 21st century tessellations using iPads.  This video is a demo of how to use some of the functions within the app.  There are a number of grids and possible lessons that can be taught using this app.  I am looking forward to teaching traditional as well as digital tessellation- making in the art room.  

View the "How To" demo video I created below to see how I created my tessellations. 

The mirror  and kaleidoscope grids are also wonderful.  I recall teaching a lesson in which students wrote their names in script on a folded paper, superimposed the continuous line in their names and then designed an insect out of the letters.  With this app, students can turn the iPad sideways, write their name on the line and print their names in mirror image format.  Then, they can use traditional tools to design their insects, aliens, etc (see below).

 (First Name Written in Script)

(First Name Printed and Flipped Vertically: Ready to Transform into Insect/Alien/etc.)

The kaleidoscope function can be used to draw snowflakes, flowers, mandalas, etc.   

There are plenty of ways for us art teachers to design rich and engaging lessons that can incorporate traditional and traditional tools using this app.

FaceWorld Rocks
Faces iMake is one of my favorite apps.  It invites people of all ages to create digital collages using images within the app as well as your own photos. It has received great recognition and won numerous awards, such as the prestigious "Parents Choice Award".  http://www.facesimake.com/

The app developers who created this app (iMagine machine and artist,Hanoch Piven) have just released FaceWorld! FaceWorld allows digital artists to share work within the app and even collaborate to create new collages within the Faces iMake app.  Once an artist is finished with his or her creation, there is an option to post the artwork to FaceWorld.  Others can then view the artwork in the FaceWorld gallery and can even decide to use some of the new objects or images to make another collage.  Learn more about the app developers and about FaceWorld here

I was thrilled to share Faces iMake and my students' digital collages at the National Art Education Association Convention in NYC this past March, but am even more excited about sharing the new possibilities that FaceWorld will bring. 

As a teacher, I am required to infuse technology into my lessons and teach 21st century skills to best prepare my students for the future.  Faces iMake teaches students how to pinch, zoom, resize, move, turn, flip, duplicate, send to back, bring to front, add, remove and delete on an iPad, all while making creative choices to compose digital works of art. In doing so, students meet these National Technology standards:

1. Creativity and Innovation 
Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct 
knowledge, and develop innovative products and 
processes using technology.

a. Apply existing knowledge to generate new ideas, 
products, or processes

b. Create original works as a means of personal 
or group expression

 Now, because of the sharing and collaborative features in  FaceWorld, students will be able to meet even more of our National Technology standards:

2. Communication and Collaboration 
Students use digital media and environments to 
communicate and work collaboratively, including 
at a distance, to support individual learning and 
contribute to the learning of others.

a. Interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, 
experts, or others employing a variety of digital 
environments and media

b. Communicate information and ideas effectively 
to multiple audiences using a variety of media 
and formats

I've been communicating with these talented app developers and consider myself fortunate to have been invited to try FaceWorld as it was in its beginning stages.  Needless to say, I am crazy about the app and am having a lot of fun making my own creations and posting them to FaceWorld.  My digital collages under the name, "Tiedemania" are featured on the "Featured Artist" page in FaceWorld, which is also very exciting!  I've posted my work at the top and bottom of this blog article, but what I am looking forward to most is seeing how my students will collaborate, create and share!  

See how B.A. 1st graders used Faces iMake last year here: 

If you already have the Faces iMake app, be sure to apply the latest update so that you can access FaceWorld! If yo don't have it yet, it is available in the iTunes Store. 

Have fun!

Make Art and Music
Artwork created by B.A. artists was recently shown and recognized in a TED @London Talk by app developer James Alliban! Mr. Alliban presented the TED Talk featured in the video below in London as a part of a global talent search, with the hopes of being invited to TED 2013!  Vote for James and leave a comment on his video page to help him get selected.  You can link to his video page here http://bit.ly/NenBHN or by clicking the image above.
Best of luck to you Mr. Alliban and thank you for the mention!

A little background information regarding B.A. Artists and Mr. Alliban:
We have been using Mr. Alliban's apps, Composite and Konstruct on our iPads in the art room to learn about augmented reality.  Last year, Mr. Alliban participated in a video Skype conversation with my 5th graders. 5th graders had invented ideas for apps as well as logos.  Mr. Alliban was kind enough to offer his expert advice for my students regarding their work as well as answer questions that students had about being an app developer.  Click here to view the video of our B.A. Skype chat with Mr. Alliban  


Click the links below to view the B.A. Augmented Reality Artwork Mr. Alliban shares in his talk. 



This Saturday, I will be heading into NYC for the National Art Education Association Conference.  I am looking forward to meeting so many great art educators who I have connected with on Twitter.  It sure will be nice to finally be able to put faces to the names that have been the source of incredible inspiration for my students and me. 

Tricia Fuglestad, Theresa Gillespie and I have been planning our presentation, “There’s an App for That: iPads in Art Ed” for about a year now.  Theresa and Tricia live in Illinois, so we prepared using online tools such as Wikis, Google Docs, Skype, DropBox, and more.  Unfortunately, Theresa Gillespie notified Tricia and me that she would not be able to attend the conference, but as Tricia put it, she will be with us in spirit. 

Tricia and I created our presentation using Keynote on our Macs.  We each assembled slides that will inform our attendees why we use iPads, how we manage them, how we manage digital artwork, how we use iPads with students (apps), and what our future goals are. 

We reached out to the developers of the apps we have been using to let them know we would be sharing their apps in our presentation.  Many of them offered to provide us with free app codes.  We are taping the codes to the back of our business cards and giving them away as door prizes!  Some of the apps that we will be giving away, include, Sonic Pics, Faces iMake, Photo Tropedelic, Halftone, Doink, FaceJack, Dramatic Black and White, Grungetastic, NIR Color, PhotoArtista Oil HD, PhotoArtista Haiku HD, PhotoArtista Sketch, Rainy Daze, Romantic Photo, Simply HDR, Snow Daze, Vintage Scene, Artisan Paint and more.

I can’t believe that our presentation day is almost here! I started following Tricia’s work approximately 7 or 8 years ago, so this opportunity to present with her is truly mind blowing!

Check out our presentation website 

I added it as a tab at the top of this B.A. Art Website too. 
Wish us luck! 

When I visited the Percolator App Facebook page last night, I saw that the app developers had posted a link to our B.A. Artsonia gallery featuring the percolated images that our 4th graders created in art class!  This will be so exciting for students to see that the people who invented the app we are using are connecting with us and sharing our work with the world.  The people at Percolator and I have also been connecting on Twitter too!  I received a direct message the other day from them asking about how my students enjoyed the new animations in their updated version. They also shared that they are working on a video version.  It looks like we have even more to look forward to from the talented folks behind this cool app.  See B.A. "percolated" artwork in these two Artsonia galleries:   



Learn more about Percolator here:  http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/percolator/id385454903?mt=8 

Above is an inspirational Ted Talk by a 6th grade app developer named 
Thomas Suarez.  

5th grade students at B.A. worked in groups, pretending to be app developers. Initially, their task was to brainstorm and discuss what apps might help to solve problems or fill a need in the world. Each group then discussed the purpose of their app, the features their app may have, how much they would sell it for, and decided whether or not they felt that this app would be marketable. 

Working as a team required students to collaborate and communicate their ideas to ensure that their efforts would be successful. Many groups invented one series of apps so that they could each create a variation to be released at different dates. This idea required students to design a logical sequence that would be applied to each new app. For example, some felt it would be wise to release the first app of their series for free to gain interest. Then, if their app was a success, they said they could release other apps with more features and priced accordingly. 

After viewing various icons in the iTunes Store, students were required to design icons that they felt would best represent their products. They each wrote descriptions about their apps, and listed the app features and price. 

See 5th grade app ideas and icons in our Artsonia galleries:





Some students participated in a Skype Video call with an app developer named James Alliban yesterday. We have created art using a couple of Mr. Alliban’s apps in the art room (Composite and Konstruct ), so it was very meaningful for us to have the opportunity to learn about what it takes to be an app developer. Stay tuned to see the video footage that students took during our conversation with Mr. James Alliban.