Saturday, April 1, 2017

Beautiful Auction Art

As I mentioned in the previous post, our elementary school raises most of its PTA money through a big auction. One of the elements of the auction are individual class projects. These seem to go for quite a bit of money, so there's a little bit of pressure when creating them. I had a fun time doing one of them last year for my son's kindergarten class. This year, I decided to help my other son's third grade teacher with their project. She really wanted to the auction project to be relevant to their current curriculum, so they could possibly use parts of the art project for other assignments in class. After doing a bunch of research looking for ideas, I got my inspiration. We would do a sort of mosaic of drawings and turn it into a poster.
1. I created a square in photoshop and then had a bunch printed out, so each child in the class could make two or three drawings. (Feel free to click on it and download it.)

2. The teacher decided on a theme: in this case, we went botanical, and the kids drew plants, flowers, and berries from a specific region they were studying in class. I could see lots of other potential ideas: animals, elements of the local city, fish, patterns, self-portraits, etc.
3. Each child drew two or three plants, colored them with colored pencil, then outlined the drawings with a fine sharpie.
4. I scanned all of the pictures and brought them into photoshop.
5. I created the big grid in photoshop - the full-size poster with empty squares laid out the way I wanted it.
6. I brought in each picture and placed them in the empty grid, making sure to mix up the drawings because there were duplicates.
7. I brought the grid layer to the top, and switched it to the multiply layer setting so that the drawings would be visible underneath it.
8. I cleaned up any stray colored pencil lines, and erased any drawing parts that fell outside the grid lines.
9. I added the description text at the bottom.
10. I had it printed through

One thing I like about doing auction projects digitally is that they can be reproduced. If an auction project is popular, the PTA can decide to sell a second or third copy for the same price as the first was bid on and double their money. These projects also make excellent end-of-year teacher gifts, or they have the possibility of being permanently displayed somewhere in the school.
The teacher was able to use the scanned drawings for relevant reports the kids were working on, as well as to make some cute thank you notes for a guest visitor to their classroom.

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