Art Retreat at Bellows, AFB, Hawaii
with Kathy Chock and James Rumford


January 19, 1999

To: Kaiser Complex Teachers
From: GT Teachers
Re:   Visual Arts Gifted and Talented Program


We are happy to announce that in December, 1998, the Kaiser Complex GT Visual Arts Program received Artist-In-The-School grant funding.  As a result, two artists will be contracted to provide services to our students during the second semester - Mr. James Rumford and Mrs. Kathy Chock.

Mr. Rumford is the author/illustrator of three children's books which have been added to our school libraries, and he is currently working on watercolor illustrations for his fourth one.  His book, The Island-Below-The-Star, was recently acclaimed by New York Times critic Christopher Lehmann-Haupt as "one of the top ten children's book published in the U.S. this past year."  We feel very fortunate to have him as one of our artist instructors to teach watercolor painting, and also look forward to his presentation as guest speaker at our next teacher inservice on February 10, 1999.

Ms.Chock has an extensive background as a former gifted and talented teacher, and is also instrumental in promoting space education in our elementary schools.  This highly creative teacher will combine her expertise in ceramics with critical thinking, problem solving, and writing skills to provide an exciting visual arts experience for our students.


February 22, 1999

Mr. Rumford opening statements to the students included the idea of seeing with one's "art glasses" on, then capturing what one feels and thinks about with watercolor when looking out at the beach and land.

Ms. Chock welcomes the student to a starting outdoor project using white clay.   She stated that this is the chance to use brains and creativity to learn new skills.  She challenges all students to create a new animal never seen before, using odd number appendages.  To do this with fast drying clay and with so many students requires teamwork and support and a positive attitude.  All pieces will be in a school show and include title and art statements by the student artists.

Comments and observations - the day at Bellows was quite windy and overcast threatened rain and dull colors for the seascapes to be rendered by the students.   However the sun did eventually come out, thereby providing a myriad of marine blues and greens  to the ocean surface. The wind provided nice splashing white waves to add contrast and the trees along the beach provided nice linear forms for the students' foregrounds. In Ms. Chock's classwork, done in an outdoor pavillion along the beach, students worked their first pinch pots in the white clay. They practiced affixing an appendage and closing off the pot into an even thickness sphere.  During the next session they will do the same and use the sphere as the starting body for an imaginary animal with an assortment of unusual appendages.  The works will eventually be glazed and fired and displayed in school shows.

Coool side notes -  the two yellow school buses were named DaVinci Bus and Monet Bus; the day ended with free large cookies and bottled Menehune water for all!