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School Visits and Residencies

Lorna Bennett provides both one day, single session interactive illustrator sessions to grades k -12, four sessions per day, as well as week long school residencies. Curriculum, duration, and schedule are flexible and open to discussion.

School Artist in Residence Instructor Description

The artist in residencies Lorna offers are based on the concept that everyone can draw when provided with the right instruction and encouragement. Working with all grade levels since 2001 has affirmed this premise. Albert Einstein said, "Imagination is more important than knowledge." This concept is important in the realm of new innovation, where knowledge only expands when imagination is nurtured. Practical applications of this view are discussed and incorporated in the residency.

Lorna Bennett will work with school students on illustration skills as well as character creation, story development and visual communication. The first session begins with published sample and storyboard viewing, question time, as well as discussion about the nature of art and the impact of all of The Arts in our lives. Students are helped to connect with these various genres in a personal way. Students will learn many varied drawing techniques, illustrative tricks, inspire their imaginations, and improve their eye-hand coordination. In-class activities and games will increase drawing proficiency, confidence, and provide students with the tools to become more skilled at trusting their creative ideas and goals. Lorna will provide in-class feedback on illustration, mediums, character creation, and the combination of image and writing as a partnership in storytelling, all at age appropriate levels.

At the end of the residency, each student will have completed their own rough color copy, bound and covered, of their illustrated story/picture book.

Many types of media can be incorporated in the residency, depending on school supplies and residency budget.


Single Session School Visits

If you are interested in having Lorna visit your school to give single session interactive presentations for a day or two, here is some initial information about my sessions that may be helpful: 

Students are first invited to view Lorna's step-by-step illustration storyboards, samples of published work (eg: ChickaDee magazine, cards, books) before sitting down. There will be a discussion about art, illustration as well as  the nature and importance of all The Arts by relating them to our own personal lives. We will touch on topics such as creative thinking, perseverance, goal setting and risk taking when learning new things, trusting oneself, and how education opens doors to life, followed by questions. 

The final two thirds of the session involves fun interactive drawing with the students, starting off with a step by step cartoon collie, tiger and other images that even kindergarten kids can draw. The goal is the individual feeling of success and skill expansion. Time may be spent working on character creation and right-brain drawing, depending on time and grade level. The last portion of our time is always reserved for the Alphabet Game, a wild, fun and creative art challenge Lorna created. Students brainstorm nouns, verbs, and emotions that start with one letter of the alphabet. Then I draw them at top speed into one cohesive, comical illustration; students can draw along. This game is the last "hurrah" and teachers often say that the students love to see it come together out of nothing so quickly. Because students may not be finished their own alphabet game drawings, I prefer using large white paper rather than a white board so that they can take it back to class as a group to refer to.

Lorna will bring a master-sheet set of drawing activities, developed over the years, that the school may copy for the students and distribute for later class work or home.

Students need: 

  • a firm surface to draw on - a hardcover book or clipboard on their lap works well to place paper.
  • 5 white pieces of paper (8.5" x 11" is fine) or sketchbook.
  • sharpened pencil & eraser. 
  • It is best to have no more than a year in age apart in multiple class groups.

Sitting on a carpeted floor works best, eg: library or music room. I have found this set-up always works much better than a classroom with squeaking tables & chairs & pencils; they are more compact as a group and can all see the easel well.

Lorna needs:

  • A tall - at least 6' (flip-chart style is good) easel with a FIRM backing.
  • Large white unlined paper clipped on (available at Staples) to demonstrate drawing.
  • 2 long tables off to the side to put storyboards and published illustration samples on.
  • The start time of first session  (Lorna arrives about 20 minutes before session start time).
  • Directions to your school from South Edmonton, (and approx. drive time if you know it).
  • Where to park (two large rolling cases of materials must be brought in).
Fee
Mileage and accommodations are covered by the host school. 
$500 per day, $300 per half day, + 5% GST.
Please contact me to discuss further details. 


More session reviews:

Lorna inspired the students to generate their own ideas and to never give up. 
An excellent, age appropriate and exciting presentation. 
~ Steinhauer School
 
We loved the creativity, ambition, spontaneity and enthusiasm.
  ~Wild Rose School

Awesome! Amazing! Riveting! The students were transfixed from start to finish. Superb!.
~ Victoria School for the Performing and Visual Arts:  


For schools/students who want to know a little more about Lorna
Favorite foods:
Sushi, Thai salads (but not chicken feet!)
Favorite children's book:
Saving Sweetness (and Raising Sweetness ), illustrated by Brian Karas
Favorite animals to draw:
anteaters, armadillos, bears, bugs, bunnies, cats, dogs, gorillas, hamsters, horses, mice, monkeys, moose, squirrels, the list might be endless....
Favorite novels:
Who Has Seen the Wind and 
To Kill a Mockingbird
Favorite musical instrument to play:
guitar, flute, piano, drums 

Favorite musical instrument to listen to:
cello
I really want to travel to:
Italy, Scotland, Alaska, Patagonia, Tibet, Nepal, Africa; then Japan and New York again!

Favorite colors:
green
periwinkle mauve
robin's egg blue  
Some places I have traveled to:
Japan, China, Korea, Hawaii, Baja Mexico, Oregon Dunes, Grande Canyon, Canyon de Chelly, Monument Valley, Arches National Park, New York, Nova Scotia, and all over Alberta, Saskatchewan & British Columbia
A few more things:
I love to travel down a highway I've never been on before. 
I recycle every possible thing I can. 
I love watching the sun going down over the wide, rolling prairie on a clear night. 
Some of my favorite children's book illustrators:
Marie-Louise Gay 
Chris Van Allsburg 
Brian Karas 
Gary Kelly 
Jon Muth
Shaun Tan
Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher
Mary Grandpre

Babette Cole
David Johnson
Lane Smith
C. F. Payne 
Lisbeth Zwerger 
Barry Moser 
Dr. Suess 
Stephane Jorisch
Oliver Jeffers