One minute wonders!

A technical hitch with the link meant a short notice visit to Crossmaglen this week, but I am not complaining, its a very beautiful part of the country, driving along by Camlough Lake and mountain no matter what the weather….. and the weather was driving rain and wind!

Our activities were set for indoors this week and we discussed the notion of time distortions – how fast time seems to pass sometimes! I asked the children to think of when time seems to pass slowly and quickly. Some thought time went slowly when at school! Others noticed that time went fast when something exciting was happening!

Before we began, we had a look at the journal on the whiteboard. It was the first time the children had seen the images from our earlier session and they enjoyed seeing themselves at the pond and recognizing their own photgraphs, taken by them on the day! They also were amused at how badly I used the whiteboard and whiteboard pen – I defintiely need some lessons!

Then I explained that today we would investigate ideas around time in relation to drawing and taking photographs.

Our first task was to make a fast drawing and we only had one minute to do this. The children drew objects placed on the table, using marker pens (so that they could not ‘correct’ it by rubbing out and it would be darker on the page). I encouraged them to keep looking at the object and NOT at their page so that their focus was observing the object and not worrying about how it looked on the page. A minute went by very quickly, but look at the concentration!


one minute drawing - no looking at the page!


keep the focus!
A great job!

Then we tried a longer drawing and had 5 minutes this time…..


Really good concentration...
Great concentration Erikas!
Its hard work for 5 minutes!

When both drawings were done, we discussed the sorts of marks and lines made and what we had captured of the object in a short time and then given longer to study it. We noticed that we had captured the main shape of the object in only a short time and then when we had longer we captured much more detail.

Reviewing the work made by everyone
Seeing the difference between the drawings


The children enjoyed looking at each other's work

After the children had had a chance to see each other’s work Miss Fanthorpe asked them to say something about the different drawings and what they liked. This was a great activity for them and the children responded enthusiastically!

Have a look at these one and five minute wonders!




After this I introduced the idea of documenting a drawing over time and showed the children a video work I had made from 2004, which featured the evolution of a drawing from white page to finished drawing and then the drawing reverses! The children asked lots of questions about the work.

Artwork called 'Life drawing' of an infant's cot... its an evolving drawing that reverses...

I told the children how I had made the drawing / video by using a start stop technique. So  each time I made a line or mark on the drawing I recorded it. When run fluently the drawing appears and then using editing software, I reversed the clips so the drawing unravels back to white page. I told them I used a TRIPOD to keep my camera absolutely steady and in the one spot.

We decided to make our own timed drawing or recorded action.

This needed alot of planning:

What to draw or photograph?

How to do it?

What equipment did we need to have?

How many stages of the drawing or action would we record?

Who will do what?

The children worked in small groups to plan and shoot their action or drawing.


working out the stages of the drawing

Some children decided to act out a sequence and photograph the stages of this using a stills camera. This exercise was intended as a trial for a more elaborate sequence to be worked on for our final session. This would give the children an idea about what they needed to do and any problems that might come up.

stage 1

The children were going to import these shots into Movie Maker and run it as a sequence.

Working through an action was the intention of another group:



Another group used a drawing of a simple house to try out their stop start animation. They used a tripod to keep their camera very steady. This was really helpful. To make this easier they taped a piece of paper to the wall, so they could photograph the drawing from a good position.




The session went in far too quickly, but we had managed to try out our simple idea and see how it worked. Looking forward to next week when we bring our ideas to life and sadly our project to a close.





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