Wednesday, November 24, 2010

My Art Exemplar Portfolio

Whew. My final presentation for graduate school is due December 9th. . . And, let me tell you, those days are flying by! I have a TON of items to turn in, not the least of which is a final presentation about the importance of play. I can't wait to share what I have learned about the psychology of play and it relates to learning with all of you. It is REALLY amazing.

In the mean time, I thought I'd share a modified version of my portfolio. I posted a copy of this awhile ago, but this one is more professional, more visual, and more updated. I decided to break my portfolio down into 2 books. One book is the one I've embedded below -printed from This book is all about what my student artwork looks like, what my artwork looks like, what my classroom looks like, and what my displays look like. It is purely visual.

The second book is a binder I've designed and printed from Inside this book is my resume, teaching philosophy, teaching certification, teaching insurance proof, press written about me, classroom management, and examples of my lesson plans. It is almost purely text-based. I figured this text-based information is more subject to change than the visual information. . . At least in my world. So, since the text information is complied into a binder, I can change it at-will to suit the needs of to whomever I'm presenting.

You might ask, how much did you spend on all of this?! Well, honestly, it isn't cheap, but it isn't too expensive either. When you consider how much you would spend on color printer cartridges and paper, it is about the same. But, here is what I have noticed when I present these books to prospective employers, fellow art educators, and professors: no one really READS anything in these books. They glance. They ask you to paraphrase for sure, but no one reads. It is important to have written it out just so you can articulate yourself well on your philosophies. What I have noticed is that everyone LOOKS and visually reads what it is exactly that you present to them. The cleaner the presentation, the more interesting, the more visually engaging, the more positive the response.

Ultimately, as art educators, we are the aesthetic taste-makers of our schools (often whether we like it or not!). It pays to show how you can make a boring presentation of your skills exciting and engaging.

I'm all over the online printing. If you have any questions about it, feel free to ask. I've enclosed some links below that I LOVE to use when I online print.

Vistaprint - does FREE printing on a lot of items -including business cards- as long as you are willing to have the Vistaprint logo on the back.

Overnight Prints - my favorite online printing source. The cards I used for the GAEA conference were printed from this source. I always use the economy printing, and it never looks economy.

Zazzle - they print stickers and other promotional stuff like that. It isn't cheap; but it is awesome.

Shutterfly - they advertise as a source for printing professional-looking photo albums and scrapbooks but they are great for printing portfolios etc. etc. Average cost is about $30 for a hard-bound book.

Lulu - another online book printing source. They have a cheaper option if you plan to print out duplicates of anything.

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