St Peter’s CE J I & EY School

Project: Digital Art – See Views
Participants: 17 children from Reception to Year 6
Partnering with: Carlton J & I School
Artist: Lucy Bergman

Our Digital Art project is about getting outdoors and comparing differences and changes in the local natural and built environments.  It will give us the chance to explore areas that although we are familiar with, we may not have looked closely at and noticed the details of.  We’ll be going on walks and collecting shapes, colours, words, sounds and textures using photography, writing and recording.  We will then use our various collected documents to produce illustrated scenes brought to life with our found sounds and photos.  Our artwork for the exhibition will be an animated film which we will be made using our photos, illustrations and poetry.

Our partner school for the project is Carlton J & I School – have a look at their project page too.

Session 1: 4th February 2014

stpeters-1-1 stpeters-1-2 stpeters-1-3

We took a short walk to Oakwell Hall for our first session to capture some photographs. The group of 18 children, ranging from reception to Year 6, partnered up and each dashed about the beautiful grounds of Oakwell collecting photographs themed in particular colours.  There was much excitement and enthusiasm and everyone had an absolutely brilliant afternoon.  We had planned to go inside the Hall but it was off limits due a film crew being on site for a new TV programme called Jonathan Strange.  It was quite exciting peeking behind the scenes and seeing how the building was being transformed by the landscapers and art directors.  After a crisp but sunny walk back to school we had a quick chat about the plan for next week.  It was great to see the children all working together despite the mixture of ages, the older children were so gentle and helpful with the younger ones and everyone took loads of brilliant photos despite having very cold fingers!  Lucy (artist)


School’s own feedback:

We walked to Oakwell Hall armed with cameras. Each pair of children were given the task of photographing as many objects as possible which were all one specific colour.

Children enjoyed exploring the grounds of Oakwell Hal, including the formal gardens and the courtyard.

The children were amazed by how many different things they found in their specific colour.

As our Change Project involves children from each class within school (from Reception to Year 6), they worked together to use cameras, learning how to focus, zoom in and out and find suitable objects which to take pictures of.

“I liked taking pictures at Oakwell Hall of the colour brown, like bins, branches and stuff like that. I liked running around with freedom, it was awesome”

“At Oakwell I took a picture of someone’s hair that had all the colours of the rainbow in it”

“I enjoyed taking pictures and going into the willow den and working with my partner”

“I enjoyed walking to Oakwell Hall because it was full of spectacular flowers and other parts of nature”

“I liked it at Oakwell Hall cos there was flowers, trees and berries”

“It was really fun because you got to use the cameras”

Session 2: 11th February 2014

stpeters-2-1 stpeters-2-2 stpeters-2-3

Despite the snowy, rainy morning we had another lucky break in the clouds today as we set off to Birstall town centre to capture more photographs.  Today we looked for shapes hidden in our everyday environment and explored the town centre aided by our trusty cameras.  We found circles in tyres, dials and buttons, triangles painted on the road and in between cracked flagstones, squares in window frames, posters and drains, and rectangles in letterboxes, signs and doorways. We snapped away until our fingers went numb and then walked back to school to share how we felt about the last two sessions.  Everyone agreed we are very lucky to live somewhere where there are so many different sights to see, country and town, road and fields, busy and quiet.  Lucy (artist)


School’s own feedback:

We were again armed with cameras but this time we visited Birstall. The children were asked to continue photographing objects of their designated colour but alongside this they were also given a specific shape to find and capture.

The children were encouraged to look all around; high, low, up, down, in the alleyways and across the streets. There were so many hidden shapes and inspiring patterns.

“In Birstall today I enjoyed walking around and taking pictures of squares.  I also enjoyed seeing people enjoying themselves”

“My favourite picture was the one I took of the button that makes the green man come on and stops the cars”

“I liked walking into Birstall because we could take some pictures. I had to take pictures of rectangles. We went all over Birstall”

“I liked walking to Birstall and taking pictures of specific shapes and seeing a lot of people”

“I most liked taking pictures of triangles and finding things”

Children from our partner school, Carlton, sent us some feedback:

“I like the photographs where you are looking down at their shoes because they make an interesting pattern” Iqra

“I like the colours and the shapes in their photographs” Athsham

Session 3: 11th March 2014

stpeters-3-2 stpeters-3-1 stpeters-3-3

It was a fast and furious session today full of lovely doodling!  I asked the children to draw three images of themselves, one facing forwards, a side view and a rear view.  We then carefully cut out the miniatures.  Using a basic stop-frame animation set-up on a table-top in the hall, the children animated their cut-out figures walking across a green blanket.  We used a green blanket so that using green-screen techniques, I can easily remove the background from the walking figures and place them over the top of the photographs that the children took during our visits to Oakwell Hall and Birstall village centre.  The children have been left with the task of recording soundbites describing the changing landscapes of their neighbourhood, which will be used for the film soundtrack.  Lucy (artist)

School’s own feedback:

On this occasion, we stayed in school to create a “mini me” which would later be used in the film, alongside the photographs we had previously taken. The children enjoyed drawing themselves from front, side and behind. For many, this was the first time they had considered how to draw themselves in profile or from behind so it proved interesting! The mini-me’s were then cut out and Lucy helped children to take photographs of them placed on a green screen.

“I learnt how to draw myself from the side, which is hard, but I think my picture is really good!”

“It was fun animating our mini Me’s!”

“I liked drawing pictures of myself”

“I liked making the person move”

“I drew pictures of my body. I enjoyed making it walk”

Session 4: 1st April 2014

This session took place without Lucy yet we were working on a task which she had set us before she left after session 3.

Children were to record themselves speaking about the local area, including Oakwell Hall and Birstall. Many children talked about similarities and differences between the two places.

The children had great fun recording themselves using digital microphones. We all enjoyed listening back to what was recorded and some children especially enjoyed hearing the humorous out-takes!




Children from our partner school, Carlton, sent us some feedback:

“I’m really looking forward to seeing their animations” – Muskaan

A final word from staff…

Our project was about being outside, exploring the local environment and comparing Oakwell Hall with Birstall village centre. It has given children the chance to take a deeper look at the world in which they live, work and play. Children observed so many features of local buildings and landmarks which they had previously failed to take notice of.

One huge unplanned benefit for all involved was the way in which children worked together throughout the project. Our project involved children from all classes within school, from Reception class to Year 6. It was pleasing to note how co-operative and supportive children were. There were some initial doubts about involving such young children but the two Reception children in particular thoroughly enjoyed their involvement and their contributions were invaluable.

Our partner school, Carlton, also happens to be our partner school for the Linking project and I am sure the children involved will have made lasting friendships and memories with their peers.

Gill Cooney