Greater Denton Arts Council

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Fall Session: Wednesdays, October 4 – December 13, 2017
Patterson-Appleton Arts Center
Student drop off 3:00 – 3:30; classes 3:30 – 5:30 pm
Individual Class $15; Discounted (4) Class Pack: $55 for public ($50 for GDAC members)

 Arts After School is an exploratory program for students ages 6-10 that investigates the history of art and provides a forum for creative self-expression. This program not only offers art instruction, it nurtures life skills that foster constructive youth development. Through visual analysis and personal reflection, students will assess and interpret the ways in which they relate to the world and each other while gaining confidence in their decision making and public speaking capabilities. All supplies provided. Class size is limited; advanced registration required. To register, email or call 940.382.2787


weekly class descriptions

October 4: Camera Obscura
In the twenty-first century, taking pictures is as easy as pressing a button on our phone. But how did history’s earliest form of the camera work? In this class, students will become acquainted with the origins of photography and experiment with basic optics using the camera obscura’s present-day cousin, a pinhole camera.

October 11: Art and Nature
Art isn’t only found within the confines of a museum’s walls, it exists everywhere around us! This week kid’s will explore the Land Art movement and create their own works of art using natural materials. Concepts covered include; organic vs. geometric shapes, patterning, and tessellations.

October 18: Architecture
We spend a large portion of our daily lives in buildings or navigating around them. But how often do we consider their importance? During this interdisciplinary lesson, students will contemplate the various functions of architecture, from shelter to beauty to monuments, and design their own structures inspired by local and international architectural icons.

October 25: Portraiture
Portraiture is one of the most ubiquitous forms of art that has only expanded in the age of selfies and digital scrapbooks. It can reveal both the likeness of a person and their character traits. Using visual clues such as attire, settings, accessories, and facial expressions, students will learn how individual representation has been utilized throughout history to assert self-identity or the perception of others. The second half of the class will ask students to investigate their personal point of view as they sketch themselves and their classmates while practicing figure drawing techniques.

November 1: Public Art
Public art is a common way to express a community’s culture, heritage, and aspirations. This class looks at different forms of public art, including murals and sculpture, and asks students to think about what their community means to them. The children will then collaborate on an art project that represents a collection of ideas about how they understand their relationship and responsibility to the community they live in.

November 8: Still Life
Observing and practicing the genre of Still Life is one of the best ways to learn rudimentary techniques such as depicting light, shadow and texture. It is also an interesting exploration into how everyday objects can carry symbolic meaning. After identifying basic elements, students will create their own Still Life using items that convey personal significance in their own lives.

November 15: Landscape Painting
Landscape painting is a crowd favorite. But why? This unit will delve into the relationship between humans and the natural world. We will share our emotional responses to the experience of space and consider how the environment shapes regional identity. Students will gain elementary knowledge of compositional elements and paint their own imagined or real landscapes.


November 29: Writing Systems
From Egyptian hieroglyphs to computer coding, writing systems are essential tools in human communication. Students will learn how writing systems transmit ideas, transform over time, and preserve history. They will then compose their own project using a variety of signs and symbols.

December 6: Optical Illusions
Emerging in the twentieth-century as a new form of art that places emphasis on visual perception, Optical art is known for making viewers see what is not in fact there. In this class, students will play with optical illusions and develop an understanding of the methods Op artists use to trick the eye into perceiving movement in a still image. Students will have the opportunity to make their own piece of Op art in the second half of class.

December 13: Printmaking
Before the advent of modern technologies, news, ideas, and artwork were disseminated through the process of printmaking. Prints can be executed using a range of methods and, unlike most other mediums, distributed in large quantities. Students will explore the printmaking process from start to finish, and gain hands-on experience creating multiples without the option to “cut and copy.”


Learn more about GDAC's family, student and youth art programs on our events page.