Art teacher Nathan Fry modeled a painting contest in his classroom today after the Canvas Clash, a painting competition in Franklin last weekend sponsored by Ethos of the Arts. Fry won the inaugural event and brought the format back to his art classes for the “AP Studio Canvas Clash.”
The class was separated into two groups. Group one went up to the set-up easels with a blank piece of paper and painted whatever they wanted, but it had to be done in 20 minutes. Group two went up and finished the painting.
The weekend’s Canvas Clash in Franklin was a 20-minute art competition. Fry said, “I had twenty minutes to complete a painting from start to finish. I’m bringing this activity into the classroom because I think it helps to get students involved, to see if they can operate under a time crunch.”
Fry won a trophy as prize for the painting competition with a picture of a dinosaur. Similarly, he will be awarding prizes to the painter of the best piece of art in the classroom competition. First and second place prizes include a painting or ceramic mug made by Fry. “Last place” will receive a mustache-shaped band-aid.
“This is a fun experience because I love painting, and it’s cool to see if we can get a decent painting done in 20 minutes,” senior Emma Red said. “I decided to paint ducks in a shower.”
Fry hopes the event is not only a creative experiment but also offers academic rewards.
“We are going to use the finished paintings to learn about the critique process that I want to use in this class and how to say critical things about other’s art,” Fry said. “I am hoping that it will be easier to do without ‘hurting feelings’ because it is a 20 minute painting–something they have never done before, so there will be some obvious weaknesses and less emotional connection to the finished work.”