Art for the Earth!

The following pieces of art were submitted to the Alameda High School EarthTeam in response to the group’s call for art which depicts an environmental problem, or one that shows your personal feeling/experience in nature.

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-Marben Galicia

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Jaclyn Lea

WolfeARThFin

-Dohyun Kim

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– Liem Nguyen

 

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-Jenny Tan

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Quiet

In the midst of sheer beauty,

In the majestic mountains,

In the vast canyons,

In the infinite waters,

In the moments of awe,

In transcendence,

In the stillness,

I ask –

Why don’t they respect the trees?

-Michael Kim

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-Cody Tabor

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This was inspired by the almost horrific picture of Peanut the turtle. After twenty years of being stuck in a plastic ring off of the top of a soda can, the damage was irreversible. Trash in our oceans is a huge problem with the gyres that have been growing in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans and have a profoundly negative impact on marine wildlife. People think that throwing a couple objects on the ground have little or no consequences, but hopefully this jarring visual will convey the danger of littering.

-Philip Sun

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Statement/Explanation:

“Nature is not always tricked in holiday attire, but the same scene which yesterday breathed perfume and glittered as for the frolic of the nymphs, is overspread with melancholy today. Nature always wears the colors of the spirit. To a man laboring under calamity, the heat of his own fire hath sadness in it.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

This triptych of photos is a visual manifestation of my experience with nature in a suburban environment. Alameda puts in some effort to incorporate a fair share of plants in its environment yet it too often feels artificial and sparse. Regardless, it is important to me to recognize the inherent beauty that lies within all of nature. As Emerson points out, nature has a way of adapting to the human condition, thus remaining one of the most resilient forces in our lives. My triptych depicts the elements of this relationship. It is the small, personal moments of interaction with nature that mean the most to me, not necessarily a grand facade of vegetation. Whether it is a few branches with leaves on them, or a plain field, these subtle elements of my environment have touched me in a way that makes me proud of the relationship that humans have with nature.

-Colin Yeo

 

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-Athenna Menjivar

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Clare Rickard

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Soliciting Art from our Peers

Kyle’s Perspective:

So recently, one of the groups on our team came up with a great idea for a contest involving expressing care for the environment through creating a piece of art that shows genuine empathy for an environmental issue. The idea was great, but getting people to join in was very hard. For awhile, even with the decent incentive of the Patagonia backpack, no one would submit a piece at all. I think it was for the most part because we did not ask people directly. It is one thing to post posters and make an announcement, and this would work if we had more resources at our disposal, but it is much more effective to ask people in person who we specifically know are interested in art but need an extra push.

I went to a few of the multimedia art classes and made the announcement to the class and then wrote it down on the whiteboard the teacher so nicely let me use. It was more effective to get people interested, and then if they wanted to, they only had to look at the board to see where. I also went to the multimedia art club and asked them, and since they were especially good at this kind of art and the message was directed at only around 7 or 8 people, I think more people were pushed to join. In the end, around 10 people submitted and I heard they look great! In general, getting people interested in an event like this is tougher than actually getting it ready, and this is because people would have to genuinely care about the subject. A teacher could assign something like a project to their students, and since the students would either care enough to do it, or not really care enough and put it off till the last minute, it really shows the influence of an emotional appeal. We would have to give an incentive that makes people care, a backpack is special, but it does not exactly provide the same appeal as something like maybe extra credit. That is what impartially made our last event a success, some people I talked to came only because it boosted their grade up, same with many of our other events.

That is why something like a tax reduction incentive is so effective as well for encouraging charity, it is how the person justifies putting the effort into something. Yes this could be seen as a form of bribery, but it gets the job done, and people do charitable work or enter in a contest like the one we put on. In the future, I hope to find more incentives that appeal to a wider range of audiences at a deeper level. This kind of work that spreads awareness about an issue both rewards us and the participant, but each one needs the other, and that is why providing an effective incentive is so important. This can be done by seeing what people care about most in our target audience, in this case it was anyone caring about the environment in our school, or an artist who cared enough to do something. In this case, asking teachers to give extra credit would be hard, so giving a gift card worth $50 is appropriate. This contest overall could have been presented more effectively, but now we know how to move forward in work like this.

Cody’s Perspective:

Last week was an interesting week since there was state testing. This made it so I didn’t have every class every day, so I was able to experiment with my announcements the first day and take what I learned and apply it to the next day’s classes.

The process overall was not that difficult. I first acquainted myself with the project and read over the parameters of the contest from the document online. I then practiced a general speech for what I was going to say. Basically talking about how I am from the EarthTeam group at our school and that we are doing an art contest on man’s impact on nature. The experience was very interesting from class to class. As all my classes except for one are all mainly seniors, they did not have the ability to apply for an internship position next year. However, many of my classmates were interested in the work we did as a group. Still others had already seen our tabling events at lunch and attended our other informational events or participated in the beach clean-ups we organized throughout the year.

I got a lot of positive comments on the contest as people were interested in putting in submissions if they found the time to create an artwork. I think the most lasting effect of my presentation was simply just getting people to think more about their impact on the environment in everyday life especially concerning marine debris. For people that asked me where they could learn more, I referred them to our blog pages along with our zero litter instagram and the EarthTeam website.

I found that in order to engage my classroom I did the announcement at the beginning of class so people had time throughout the class to ask me questions about EarthTeam and the contest. Some people seemed disinterested but others were very interested. Comparing my classes full of seniors to the class I am a TA for that is full of sophmores, I found that the seniors were more open and interested in the contest as seniors have had more experiences. They also for the most part have a more worldly mindset as most seniors next year are heading out into the next stage of life at college.

Overall I think that this experience was a very nice one to wrap up the year and that the contest is a good way to go out and engage the school, preparing them for summer and the following school year. It’s great just to simply raise awareness about the issues of marine debris even if the students choose not to participate in the art contest. As the main goal of our intern group at Alameda High is to educate people about marine debris and its effects, anything to get people at our school and the community thinking about the subject is great. The experience has helped me with my public speaking skills as well as communicating topics more concerning the environment.

Art for the eARTh Contest!

In an effort to instill a sense of environmental responsibility and stewardship among our future generations – our fellow peers – Alameda EarthTeam is hosting the Art for the Earth Contest! The contest gives students around the East Bay the opportunity to express their concerns regarding the environment, while also presenting an opportunity for participants to portray personal emotions experienced within the beautiful grandeur of nature. Submissions can vary from any form of creative art, from photography to poetry. Submissions can be posted on social media sites followed by the hashtag #EastBayStewardship, or sent to earthteamcontest2016@gmail.com. The deadline for submissions is Tuesday, May 24th (3 PM). A winner, who will be selected by EarthTeam interns and staff, will be awarded the grand prize of a brand-new Patagonia backpack!

For more information, visit tinyurl.com/artfortheearth !

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EarthWeek Success!

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We had the great opportunity to table at both Alameda High School and at the City of Alameda’s Earth Day event.  Our focus was marine debris especially concerning cigarettes, microbeads, and biomagnification. In preparation we created multiple posters with interesting facts about bottle caps and other marine debris. As for tangible items we created a model of a Midway Albatross as a visual aid for our topic. At the weekend event we included our homemade microbead free face scrub, which people loved. Prior to the event we also collected cigarette buts from around the school campus to put in a mason jar for our Jamba Juice gift card guessing game.

 

Everybody loves a good Jamba Juice! This was the perfect incentive to getting people to come learn about the cigarette butts that we collected at Alameda High School. Once people came and learnt about the cigarettes they were disgusted by its contribution to marine debris. This was especially useful during our tabling at Alameda High School, because most of the teenagers passing by were uninterested in marine debris until they learnt about the Jamba Juice gift card they could win. During the earth day event we made face scrubs which attracted people curious of what was inside the containers. Many people were astonished that their face scrubs and toothpastes were contributing to marine debris and were excited to use this new environmentally friendly face scrub. We also made a albatross bird to demonstrate how trash affects the marine animal population. People far away saw this bird and were confused on why it had trash inside it. However sometimes people walking by our table were just not interested; we found that the best way to pull people in was to ask them a question, both people who knew the answer and didn’t know the answer came to talk to us. Alternatively we challenged them to guess the number of cigarettes, as not many people can refuse a challenge.     

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This tabling showed a lot of ways in which we can attract people to our booth, and then how we can get them to care about marine debris and other environmental issues we face today. It was effective to ask people if they wanted to guess how many cigarettes were in the jar, but then making them learn about the subject was difficult. I feel that if we had a short 15 or 20 second clip replaying over and over so people can see it passing by the booth, it is a lot more captivating than a simple question, and it gets people engaged even if they don’t want to approach the booth. Another thing that I noticed was that our posters (with a lot of the info we were trying to get across) were not the main focus for the audience. If they had been front and center concentrated on a poster board on the desk, it not only would be appealing and get more attention, it is perceived as the main focus and people will be more likely to remember it. Another slight flaw was our brochures. They were, I believe too filled with info, and we weren’t able to pass them out on the days we had tables in school. If we could distill that info in a short effective card, almost like a business card, people are less likely to throw it away and it is more convenient to carry around. Also, what I have seen in previous tabling is a sort of advertising people use, whether it be face paint or stickers, people ask where they got it and are more likely to go to the table or event. That and if they use a sticker, it is a constant of the beholder, and they are reminded of the event. That is why we either go big or sell quickly. By that I mean we put on a huge event with a lot of activities and tables that people will remember in the future, or we still have the table but it is packed will a lot of attention grabbing materials and we give out stickers or brochures or hold a contest that people will have that will remind them of the information. To accomplish all of this, the table crew has to be well prepared with the proper info and necessary amount of materials to give out (we ran out of the face scrubs we were giving out very quickly and people were still interested in learning about it).

Despite all the challenges we faced, the events went very well. Overall, many people came and learned many new things, walking away with a better understanding of marine debris. Not only did the public learn about marine debris, but we also improved in our public speaking and learned how we could improve our events for the future. We learned that incentives and questions are a good way to draw people in and that in future events we expect bigger crowds so that we don’t run out of things to give out.

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