By: Erron Hilton

Students at Laramie High School were tasked with creating art outside of their comfort zone.

In Justin Deegan’s painting class, students were given an assignment early this November to paint something while using a method they typically don’t use.

“It was about half way through the semester,” Deegan said. “I noticed that some of the students were playing it very safe and so they were only painting something they were comfortable with.”

Deegan then decided to create an assignment in order to expose his students to other types of art and methods to create such art.

In class, they watched videos on different types of art in order to get ideas.

“The whole assignment was based on trying to get them out of their comfort zone,” Deegan said. “What can we do to break out of those habits and into different boundaries?”

After creating the groundwork by watching those videos, Deegan decided to create a few examples.

In one example, he poked a hole in the bottom of a paint bucket and then let it swing over a canvas while leaking a constant stream of color.

In another, he filled balloons with different colors of paint and popped them over canvases to see what would happen and what would be created.

Students then went out on their own and began painting.

Some used the methods first exemplified while others did different things such as getting paint on a paintbrush and flinging it onto a canvas or using different tools.

On top of that, a common technique was layering, where students would cover a canvas with one color, let that dry, and then continue on to create all sorts of different pieces.

“Overall, they didn’t get as weird as I hoped,” Deegan said. “But I was happy with the results anyway. Mainly, I was glad we got to do it.”

Deegan was happy he was able to expose these students to different types of art in the process, which was his main goal from the start.