Art and Design

Essential Characteristics of artists

  • The ability to use visual language skilfully and convincingly (for example, line, shape, pattern, colour, texture, form) to express emotions, interpret observations, convey insights and accentuate their individuality.
  • The ability to communicate fluently in visual and tactile form.
  • The ability to draw confidently and adventurously from observation, memory and imagination.
  • The ability to explore and invent marks, develop and deconstruct ideas and communicate perceptively and powerfully through purposeful drawing in 2D, 3D or digital media.
  • An impressive knowledge and understanding of other artists, craft makers and designers.
  • The ability to think and act like creative practitioners by using their knowledge and understanding to inform, inspire and interpret ideas, observations and feelings.
  • Independence, initiative and originality which they can use to develop their creativity.
  • The ability to select and use materials, processes and techniques skillfully and inventively to realise intentions and capitalise on the unexpected.
  • The ability to reflect on, analyse and critically evaluate their own work and that of others.
  • A passion for and a commitment to the subject.

©Chris Quigley Education Ltd

Art and design is the freedom of the individual, the freedom of expression and the freedom to fail without retort.
Simon Waterfall, Creative Director, Deepend
Art develops spiritual values and contributes a wider understanding to the experience of life which helps to build a balanced personality.
Bridget Riley, Painter
Art and design is not just a subject to learn, but an activity that you can practice: with your hands, your eyes, your whole personality.
Quentin Blake
Awareness and interaction with design is part of the contemporary professional environment. Design issues enter our life every day.
Peter Saville, Art Director and Designer
Art Day 2020
This year our theme has been animals. Key Stage 1 took part in some exciting African Drumming workshops in the hall. This led on to Reception Class and Year 1 making African animal masks. Year 2 linked their art work to their topic on China, making collages of pandas.
In Key Stage 2, we were joined by artist Sandie Sutton. Sandie has an interest in art inspired by the natural world and in re-using plastics to create innovative sculptures. Sandie led Year 3 in a workshop sculpting animals from Snowdonia to link in with Year 3's Mighty Mountains topic. The children used newspaper, plastic bottles, clothes pegs and parcel tape to make sculptures of pine martens, red squirrels, otters, choughs, osprey and beetles.
In Years 4, 5 and 6, Sandie led the children in making individual letters to spell out key phrases from our mission statement. We have been collecting small pieces of waste plastic for the past three months and now the purpose was made clear. Children spent time carefully selecting their plastic based on colour and shape and then experimenting with positioning on the wooden letters.
Elsewhere during the two days, classes looked at the tigers of Henri Rousseau, making string collagraph printing blocks of British animals,
Year 3 entered the Fitzwilliam Museum's Inspire 2020 project. We looked at the painting Cupid and Psyche by Jacopo del Sellaio. We looked at the story of Cupid and Psyche and wrote diary entries describing how Psyche felt while staying at Cupid's palace. This also provided an opportunity to investigate a little into what life might have been like living in comfort in Roman times.
We also used Cupid as our inspiration for dressing the mannequin in our Great Shelford phone box installation. The class imagined what Cupid would say to Psyche if he telephoned her.
The dialogue that the class constructed was included in the final exhibition of work from schools across the county in the Octagon Gallery at the Fitzwilliam Museum. 
Art Day 2019.
Once again we were very fortunate that the PTA generously funded workshops for both Key Stage 1 and 2. 
In Key Stage 2, all the children were delighted to be taught the process of making batik by local artist and teacher Sarah Hutchinson. The inspiration for the batik was the paisley pattern and the children very much enjoyed learning how to use the tjanting to drip the hot wax onto the cloth.
In the classrooms, Year 3 looked at the work of Georges Seurat and Andre Derain. Year 4 looked at how colours can be warm or cold. Year 5 looked at the work of Joaquin Torres Garcia and Year 6 at the portraits of Frida Kahlo.
In Key Stage 1, all three classes took part in a dragon dance workshop. We looked at how people celebrate Chinese New Year and danced with the dragon costume and parasols and fans. At the end of the day, children from Year 1 and 2 performed their dances to the rest of the school.
This is some of the feedback we received from pupils:
"I liked it when we did the parade and walked around the hall waving the dragon up and down" William Year 2
"i liked holding the dragon head in the parade. Also the music made me want to listen to it. I liked the instruments but I didn't know what they were." Joshua Year 2
"I found it weird how you can draw with wax" Elliot Year 6
" I liked the batik because when you put the ink on, I liked watching it spread and then it stopped when it hit the wax." Bea Year 3
"I really liked how we used the wax. As it dried it became solid." Calleb Year 3
Photographs of Art in classes Reception to Year 6 taken during an Art Learning Walk, Spring 2018.
Art Day 2018!
Our second Art Day took place in February.The theme for the day was 'pattern' and classes enjoyed a varied carousel of activities. Children were able to explore pattern in the natural world, look at the work of artists Beatriz Milhazes and Wassily Kandinsky, create tessellated patterns with printing tiles, create paisley patterns, create patterns printing with matchboxes and to investigate the patterns in the Fibonacci sequence.


We were also able to welcome an Artist in residence- Heidi Street Ward who helped years 2-5 create some beautiful felt banners which will be hung in the library. Thank you to all the parent helpers who very kindly gave up their time to help Heidi and the children with the carding, rubbing and rolling of the wool.


This is some of the feedback we received from pupils:

"I really enjoyed making felt, mixing the colours together because you got to use the wool brushes"

"I really enjoyed making the paisley patterns because it is very nice to try something you haven't learnt about before."

"I enjoyed the printing because the neoprene was nice to cut and it was really fun placing the printing tile in different positions."

Art Day 2017!
We had a fantastic day experimenting with different media from clay to paint and printing inks. KS1 and KS2 had a carousel of different activities, moving from room to room.
We were also delighted to welcome the sculptor John Doubleday who gave a presentation in assembly and then worked in the year 5 classroom inspiring the classes who were sculpting mushrooms.
Here is what some of our pupils had to say about Art in Great Shelford:
"It's good. We learn about other subjects through Art like Maths and History." Year 6 pupil
"I like the fact that teachers give an introduction and then you have a choice. You don't have to follow certain rules." Year 6 pupil
"As well as doing the Art, I like to learn about the artists. Each lesson is different and fun. You learn something new about an artist quite a lot." Year 4 pupil
"I'm trying to draw exactly the same as the pineapple. I'm using brown as there's brown on the top and yellow at the bottom." Reception child
"I like painting because you can mix colours to make different colours." Year 2 child
"i like it because it's not too hard. If you've got something wrong you don't need to worry." Year 1 child
"We made puppets. My one is purple with lighter purple string. We sewed around the edge of the two pieces.." Year 1 child