At Dorset House pupils enjoy the opportunity to explore a wide variety of techniques and materials when working creatively in the Art room. This variety is vital as although some children are ‘good at everything’, others can struggle producing a painting they are pleased with but excel when working on a pottery project. Children can be intimidated by a blank piece of paper but when they swap their pencil for a stick from the school’s woods, dip it in ink and start to draw, their inhibitions subside and confidence is renewed. Working outside in the beautiful surroundings of the school’s grounds can also spark off a creative idea, which was evident recently when pupils had a one-off lesson to create a piece of work inspired by artist Andy Goldsworthy.
The Art room is a hub of creativity at break times twice a week when children use the facilities to explore their own ideas during the popular Art Club sessions. This could be using the sewing machines to make a cushion or simply wanting to do a ‘picture for Mummy’s birthday’, and as from September we will have a table for budding architects with the purchase of new architectural Lego! Being able to explore their own interests is particularly important for pupils looking to prepare a portfolio of artwork for scholarships, as work must be a combination of pieces done at school and at home.
Oscar, a Year 8 pupil gained a Millennium scholarship to Brighton College this year, and included artwork in his portfolio created using Adobe Photoshop, in addition to paintings, drawings and pottery work – stemmed from artwork he had been doing in his own time. In the IT Suite, every computer is installed with Photoshop, but this was just the start for Oscar, who combined his love of computers and art into a business selling his own artwork – not bad for a thirteen year old! From seeing the fantastic results that he could achieve with the aid of a tablet and stylus, he used his CAD (computer aided design) skills to produce artwork for his portfolio. As from September Dorset House will have iPads so we will be utilising them in the art room too, and Oscar has now invested the money he made from his artwork to buy animation software…..exciting times ahead!