Friday, December 07, 2012

Learning the "Three Forces"

"Every canvas, even if nonrepresentational, that depends on harmonious relationships of the three forces -- color, volume, and line -- is a work of art." -Fernand Leger, painter, 1881-1955

In my Art Foundations course, I teach what I call the "Primary" elements of art, which are Line, Value, and Color.   In drawing and painting, all other Elements of art are dependent on these three.  Currently we are focusing on Value (Creating Form with accurate Value).  The next big project in class is a Surreal Self-Portrait, but before they begin it, I asked my students to complete a full-value portrait study. Here are some photos of several of the drawings in progress.  All are by 9th and 10th graders.  I look forward to seeing what they do when they are seniors.

A.W. 10th Grade
A.C. 10th Grade
B.F. 9th Grade
M.M. 9th Grade

Saturday, October 27, 2012

School Demo: Eclipse

I created this piece today during class to demonstrate some mixed-media techniques.  It's black and white charcoal, collage, and acrylic paint on the chip board taken from the back of an old sketchbook.  She could definitely use another hour or two of work, but overall, I was happy with it for the short amount of time I had.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Dia de los Muertos

My photography students had some fun setting up a photo shoot this week.  I asked them to plan a themed photo shoot for October, which, of course, gravitated toward Halloween.  However, after some discussion, we decided to focus on Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) because it provided an opportunity to discuss and explore other cultures.  My students scheduled a day, arranged models, and asked acquaintances with some make-up experience to help out.  Here are a few of the photos that resulted from the shoot.  We will displaying photos from all students on November 1st and 2nd.

H.C., 9th Grade
B.R., 9th Grade
A.J., 9th Grade
M.B., 9th Grade
Kevin Wasden
Kevin Wasden

Sunday, October 07, 2012


While part of me remains a purist, thinking the best photos are those that are those with no post-editing, the other part of me really enjoys tinkering with photos in Photoshop and Pixlr.  For the photo below, I duplicated the image on a new layer, applied the "cutout" filter to the new image, reduced the transparency of the duplicate layer, and reduced the transparency of the duplicate layer.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

When you can't draw, photograph.

I keep telling myself I'm going to draw and paint more than I do, but being a teacher and father of five seems to absorb most of my time.  It's not my intent to complain, only to state a fact.  Truth is, I find a lot of satisfaction in teaching and I absolutely love being a dad.  But it means I have to find other ways to let my creativity out.  Lately, I've been trying to improve my photography.  I've always enjoyed taking pictures, but haven't really pushed myself to be a better photographer.  That recently has changed.  I've started taking my camera with me more often and taking a lot more photographs.  Here are a few. 

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Art Postcards From Around the World

I have this idea...In my classroom I want to create a wall of postcards that depict art from around the world. I've started collecting a few, but obviously my reach is limited. So, I need to ask for help. If you see a postcard with art you like, would you consider mailing it?

Kevin Wasden
c/o Venture Academy
495 N 1500 W
Marriott-Slaterville, UT 84404 USA

I don't have a lot to offer in return, but I would be more than happy to send you an original sketch from my sketchbooks and a thank you from my students and myself.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Interviewed by Alethea Kontis

In November 2011, I had the opportunity to create an illustration for New York Times Bestselling Author Alethea Kontis's short story, "Counterclockwise", which was published in Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show.  It was a great story to illustrate, and what made the experience even better was learning that Alethea herself was pleased with the artwork.

Recently, Alethea interviewed me for her blog.  It was a fun little interview in which we discussed spaceships, fairy tales, and bucket lists.  You can check it out here.

Sunday, July 01, 2012

Splintered-Mind: Top Ten Animated Music Videos

Splintered-Mind: Top Ten Animated Music Videos: I grew up with MTV (way back when the "M" actually stood for Music), and, to this day, I'm still a big fan of music videos. Being an artist,...

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

DaVinci Academy Student Art Show 2012

Last Friday, we held the final student art show of the 2011-2012 school year.  In the three years I have been at DaVinci Academy, this was my favorite show.  There were over 200 entries demonstrating some wonderful 2-D and 3-D art.  We also held a reception and presented the first annual DaVinci "Arties" awards.  The support from students and parents was amazing.  All the chairs filled and the walls were lined with standing attendees.  Several students performed music and monologues throughout the evening.  In all, it was a pretty perfect evening.

Here are a few samples of student art from the show:

A.D., 12th Grade

A.D., 12th Grade, "Rock N Roll" Series

A.L., 11th Grade

A.R., 11th Grade

A.R., 11th Grade

C.G., 11th Grade

C.N., 12th Grade, Concept Sketches for "Twisted Perspectives" Fairy Tales

J.A., 9th Grade

M.D., 10th Grade

Monday, April 16, 2012

Sweeney Todd

One of the great things about DaVinci Academy is the collaboration between the visual and performing arts.  I have enjoyed working closely with a couple of fantastic drama teachers to produce great plays and musicals over the past three years.  Next up, DaVinci Academy presents Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.  Shows will be April 26, 27, 28, and 30.  The cast and crew have worked hard to bring the machinations of Sweeney's mind to life. 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

DaVinci Academy's Semiannual Student Art Exibition

Recently we held the DaVinci Academy semiannual student art show.  I wish I had time to show more, but here are a few entries.

Whale art by E.H., 12th Grade

A.L., 11th Grade, Charcoal

B.F., 8th Grade, Charcoal, Life Study from Skeleton Model,

H.J., 10th Grade, Acrylic, Assignment focusing on color/value shapes

M.D., 10th Grade, Charcoal, Life Study from skeleton model

S.C., 8th grade, Charcoal, drawing from still life

S.K., 8th Grade, Collage, "painting" of still life using collage technique

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Supporting the Arts at DaVinci Academy

Dear Artist Friends,

On March 3rd, from 7 pm to 9 pm, DaVinci Academy of Science and the Arts will host its annual Gala fundraiser.  This event has always served a crucial role in DaVinci’s fundraising efforts; however, I hope this year will surpass all others.  

This year, the Gala committee will devote all profits from the event toward completion of the school’s Black Box Theatre.  I can think of nothing that will benefit DaVinci Academy and its students more.  This theatre will provide space for plays, musical performances, lecture series, art exhibitions, and many other significant events.  DaVinci’s students have waited many years for this opportunity, and it’s my aspiration to make it happen.

In order to pull this off, we need help from the community, and in particular, I would like to extend an invitation to my artist friends.  As part of the event, we will be holding a Silent Auction, and we would like to feature quality artwork.  If any of you have any drawings, paintings, ceramics, or sculptures for which you would be willing to donate all or part of the proceeds, please contact me via the comments below, Facebook, or e-mail.   Those of you who know me, know I hate asking for donations, but this truly is a cause that is close to my heart.  

Thank you.  

Monday, January 23, 2012

Latest Illustration Work

I've had the chance to do quite a bit of illustration work over the past month or two.  Most recently I completed an illustration for Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show.  It was a challenging, but fun, piece.  It was a rush assignment and I only had a small paragraph to work from (the story itself was being translated from Portuguese into English).  Prior to that, I completed the cover art and 24 interior illustrations for Hazzardous Universe 2.  The book is scheduled for release in March, and we're currently holding a contest for young artists.  You can check out the contest rules at