Local Farm to Table Mural


Maritime Discovery Schoolsfarm

SCHOOL: Blue Heron Middle School
TEACHING ARTIST: Jesse Joshua Watson

Students create a mural inspired by the local farms that are working with the school to provide fresh, local produce for student lunches and our meals.

Target Learning: Plans mural composition.
Criteria: Uses pencil to create thumbnail sketches, collaboratively makes artistic choices to select or combine for best composition.

Target Learning:  Communicates intended message through painting.
Criteria: Conveys a sense of “place” and the connection between the farm and our food through space, contrast, balance, color choice, and effective painting techniques in composition.

Eye Movement
Golden Mean
Thumbnail Sketch
Visual Communication

Acrylic Paint
Wood Panel






Concepts Introduced:

Thumbnail Sketches: Students create tiny, rough compositions with pencil on paper in attempting to come up with many different options. They look over all concept sketches and pick the most effective, or combine several into one composition in a collaborative process.

Visual Communication: Students learn how to share a particular message or concept through visual communication. Students analyze space, detail, contrast and balance in art and how they can direct the viewer’s eyes and thinking through a composition. They learn how to alter a design to better communicate the ideas intended to get across to the viewer.

Teaching Artist:

Discuss visual communication and show examples of effective projects in a similar format (murals).

Share own process of coming up with effective murals and show photos of the process.

Guide students through creating thumbnail sketches of the composition.

 Facilitate process of choosing or combining sketches for final composition.

Provide opportunity for each student to participate in the development of layout/outline
for composition.

Help students prepare for painting mural with acrylic paint on wood panel. Assist and course correct throughout the process of painting as students articulate their ideas visually.

Help students and staff hang and display artwork for school.


Reflection Questions in Process:
Which thumbnail sketch of yours captures or says “local farm” to you most? Why?
When you look at all of your thumbnail sketches together, which one(s) stands out?  
What makes it (them) effective? 

How can you, as a class community, collaborate effectively to choose, combine or adapt sketches for the mural composition?

In what ways can you use space, contrast, balance, color choice, and effective painting techniques to communicate ideas about Farm to Table ideas in your mural composition?

Washington State Arts Learning Standards: Visual Arts
Anchor Standard 1: Creating: Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work.
Performance Standard (VA:Cr1.2.7) a. Develop criteria to guide making a work of art or design to meet an identified goal.

Anchor Standard 2: Creating: Organize and develop artistic ideas and work.
Performance Standard (VA:Cr2.3.7) a. Apply visual organizational strategies to design and produce a work of art, design, or media that clearly communicates information or ideas.

Anchor Standard 7: Responding: Perceive and analyze artistic work.
Performance Standard (VA:Re7.2.7)
a. Analyze multiple ways that images influence specific audiences.


21st Century Skills: Creativity, Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking