Thursday, May 1, 2014

Consider voting for me, please?

So, my friend Cassie Stevens is having a Best Dressed Art Teacher Contest on her blog.  And I would love your vote.  Now, if you hop over and look at her post, and all the amazing candidates for this honor, you may wonder why I think I'm worthy of your vote. So here's the deal.  Many of the outfits posted are COSTUMES, for Halloween or some other event like 'dress like an artist' day or some such thing, not everyday wear.  But not me!  This tunic-dress I am wearing proudly (above, below, and in the contest post) is everyday wear, and I designed and made it myself!  It's not just a costume.  Anybody can wear a costume!!

 And it's inspirational, too.  
Let me explain.  For years, I have bought T-shirts at art conferences.  These shirts, along with some others I have picked up along the way, generally are not cut to fit a short curvy woman, so I rarely wore them, but I really like what they say.  In a Project Runway moment, rather than turning the shirts into rags, I cut them up to create something new.  I chose carefully what quotes I wanted to keep from the shirts.  So, there's a quote about creativity by Matisse, a quote about the importance of art from writer Henry Miller, a quote about imagination by Einstein, and my absolute favorite, from Maya Angelou: "If you don't like something, change it.  If you can't change it, change your attitude.  Don't complain."  This statement hung on my classroom door, and the kids knew it was the most important rule I had.  And there's till some more pieces left, for another future Project Runway experiment!
Meanwhile take a look at the back (above).  The large quote piece is from a T-shirt that is probably 20 years old, I swear.  It came from a shirt I received when I renewed a subscription for School Arts Magazine!  The advice on it  is as valid today as it was then.  (And by the way, the winner of Cassie's contest will be featured in School Arts!  Wouldn't it be perfect to have this dress, and this story featured in the magazine??)  So vote for me!!

But if you like seeing costumes, hey, I can give you a couple of them too, though some of my favorite costumes never were photographed.  Here's one - can you guess who I was?
My students were studying Vincent Van Gogh that autumn, so I came dressed as you can see in the photo above.  The kids had learned how he would put candles on his hat so he could paint outside in the dark.  Between the candles, and the bandaged ear, the kids obviously all knew who I was..

And below is a bonus photo, taken at a party given by an art teacher friend, yikes, more than 20 years ago.  My son's babysitter had to take him to her house (he was a preschooler), because we knew he'd freak out if he saw us. (He was young and sensitive.)  There was a costume contest at the party, with the theme 'movies', and my husband was an exceptionally good sport.  He isn't usually a costume sort of guy, but he agreed to do it for me.  (Thanks, honey.)  We decided if he was going to go so far outside his comfort zone and wear a costume, we'd better try our hardest to win the contest.  And we did!  He let me put thick makeup stuff on his face, engraving the scar.  And he found silver marker caps from old-fashioned Magic Markers, and taped them willingly to his neck. I wish I had a side view photo of my hair, with it's lightening bolt silver streak.  And I wish I had a photo where we aren't smiling.  Oh well...
By the way, when we arrived at our friends' house for the party, their young son took one look at us walking up their front sidewalk and went crying to his bedroom.  He didn't come out again the whole night.  Success!! ;)

So, hop on over to Cassie's blog and vote! I'd love it if you vote for me, but I know the choices are all terrific, so mostly, please just go and vote and celebrate all these wonderful, imaginative women - and one terrific man, too!  And thanks, Cassie, for giving us the
opportunity to share our fun art teacher outfits!! 


  1. Yeah for the Project Runway inspired look -- I went over there and cast my vote. I wish you luck!!

    1. Yay! Now I know I have one vote, anyhow!