Here, the main objective is to investigate the history of sculptures in their locality and to represent their findings in the comic book genre. They will locate suitable sculptures in a local museum or elsewhere in their locality before choosing one to study in detail. They will develop their understanding of the meaning or messages contained in artworks and to relay these in their own words. They will further develop their understanding of Creative Commons Licences as well as their understanding of specific art elements e.g. proportion, perspective, colour and so on.
Every town and locality will have historic and more recently commissioned public sculptures. Students should investigate these and choose one to investigate in greater detail. Explain to them that the aim of this activity is for them to trace the history of the sculptures and represent this as a comic strip. Some students will, undoubtedly, be able to recall seeing sculptures in and around the town. These are often located in public squares, civic buildings and parks. You may wish to provide further clues as to where they can look for other, lesser-known examples in the locality.
Every member of the group must search for two or three sculptures and then, by committee, groups must decide which ones they wish to investigate further. They may wish to choose several that are linked by a common theme e.g. created by the same artist or, perhaps, that they reflect significant local events or aspects of the area’s heritage.
When they have a list of between 3 and 6 sculptures, they should select pictures of them from Google or Flickr. If they are using other people’s photographs they must be reusable under Creative Commons Licence. If they take the photos themselves they will not be restricted as to how and where they use them.
When selecting which pictures to use, ask them to consider the comic as a whole – pictures work best when there is consistency in perspective, colour, quality and size. They should plan, write and draw the history on paper and try to organize it into seven cartoon-style scenes. The first cartoon would usually present the town, city or institution where the artwork is displayed. Subsequent scenes will outline the history from their perspective. Using a tool like Pixton or Chogger, they create their digital comic in order to tell their story to the rest of the class.
Time needed 3 hours over 2-3 lessons.
- One or two devices with Internet connection per group.
- Software such as Pixton (http://www.pixton.com/es/), (http://chogger.com/) or Pikistrips (http://www.pikistrips.com/).
Hints and tips
If you prefer, the activity can be done by students working alone or in pairs but it may be necessary to allow more time or reduce the number of sculptures or cartoons scenes.
Remind them to check that pictures from the Internet are under the appropriate Creative Commons License.
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