• Academics
  • Fine Arts
  • Intensives
  • UPrep
Fine Arts and Intensives: A Perfect Match

The intensive provided an ideal format for allowing for students to have deeper and richer experiences with the arts.

Ty Talbot, Fine Arts Teacher and Department Head

During UPrep’s first-ever Intensives term in January, the Fine Arts Department had the opportunity to teach a wide array of creative and experimental classes. The intensive provided an ideal format for using new models of time (part of the goals of UPrep's Strategic Plan 2020) to expand on processes, concepts, and ideas that are part and parcel of our semester offerings, allowing for students to have deeper and richer experiences with the arts.

Without the disruption of switching between classes every 70 minutes, students embraced the struggles and promise of working like a true artist—without interruptions, with greater opportunities to take risks, and with the ability to focus on longer-term, complex projects.

Here is a brief snapshot at what happened over the course of those three weeks in the arts:

  • Elizabeth Schiffler and Paul Fleming, along with English teacher Carl Faucher, taught Filmmaking in Seattle to over 30 middle school students, establishing connections to the Northwest Film Forum and the National Film Festival for Talented Youth along the way.
  • Meleesa Wyatt and Jess Klein taught a really innovative new course called Art Lab, in which Middle School students explored various aspects of creativity from a wide variety of perspectives and approaches.      
  • Dana Bettinger partnered with Anne Bingham to spend the intensive exploring Turning Pages: Book Arts, including visits to the bookbinding and library departments at UW.
  • Elena Polanco partnered with Sarah Steininger from Saltstone Ceramics to teach UPrep’s first Ceramics class to over 30 Upper School students.
  • I taught a Painting intensive to 18 Upper School students and included field trips to visit professional artists Anthony White and Mary Ann Peters. The class also visited SAM and the Frye Art Museum, and spent an afternoon painting along with Bob Ross. During the course students created far more work than during a typical semester course.
  • Tim Blok’s Musical Theatre class culminated in students performing an all-original 15-minute musical for students and staff.              
  • Thane Lewis’s Songwriting class featured students recording original material at Jack Straw Studios here in Seattle.

Although the Fine Arts faculty was pretty tired by the end of the intensives, we were also inspired by the work our students did and are looking forward to more exciting courses this spring!

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