Working in a Collaborative Group

     I am really enjoying the process of collaborating with other artists. Collaboration is something that I unfortunately rarely do. Sophomore year at the Corcoran I had to do a collaborative project. I chose to do the project with a ceramic artist, Antea Roberts. It was actually a lot of fun. She had some really great ideas. At the time, I limited myself to two-dimensional graphite drawings. Antea was creating three-dimensional self portraits using clay. I can not remember how or why we decided to create a drawing but we did. We both began drawing directly on the 18 x 24 paper at the same time. Eventually the lines of our utensils began to cross and what once was an individual adventure became a collaborative work. We developed a narrative and tried to merge our unique styles and ideas into one. After we started working the composition became important. The work was very colorful and filled with line work. We both were very proud of our accomplishment. 

     This leads me to address the need for collaborative work in the education field. I laugh at the idea of being an art teacher, who never collaborates but constantly encourages students to participate in group work. I think the collaborative experience can be a little awkward for some but learning how to communicate with others and appreciate other ideas besides your own is imperative for educators and students. Educators need to become comfortable with the idea of teamwork. With the collaborative experience outside the classroom, educators can truthfully explain to their students the importance of group work. I have met many art teachers who do not collaborate with other educators. Sometimes the teachers really are not working with the students but dictating how they want the foreground and background of a picture to look. Having the experience of collaborating with others broadens the educators perspective on the creative process in and out of the classroom.

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