Tag Archives: artstor

“Image Manipulation” slideshow used to launch our 6th grade Renaissance Photoshop project

Katelin O’Hare and I are meeting with the 6th grade Art classes this week to introduce our Renaissance Photoshop project where students locate a Renaissance painting and layer themselves into it. In the past we’ve used Dove’s Evolution of Beauty campaign video to kick-off a discussion about image manipulation. This year, I gathered examples from additional resources, news stories, and ad campaigns.

Three noted moments from the ensuing conversation:
1. When looking at examples of image manipulation in advertising and fashion magazines, one 6th grader came up with the analogy: “Photoshop is to models what steroids is to athletes.” This spawned a really interesting discussion.
2. When asked where they should start their search for images of Renaissance paintings to use for their project (before we introduced Artstor), many students called out Google! One child then piped in, “The problem with Google, is that you don’t know if the images you locate will be an authentic image or an altered one.”
3. When asked why Artstor rightfully charges for a subscription to their amazing digital repository of art, one child said it was because, “They take really big photos of paintings and then host them on their computers and let us download them. It’s like iTunes for artwork. That costs money.”

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In 6th Art, starting our Renaissance Photoshop Project with Yoshiko Maruiwa.

Today, I began the annual Renaissance Photoshop Project with Yoshiko Maruiwa, my favorite 6th grade Art teacher at The School at Columbia University. As part of the 6th grade integrated study of Florence and the Renaissance in English, Social Studies, Science, Art, Music, and Wellness, Yoshiko and I team-teach this Photoshop unit where students locate a Renaissance painting and layer themselves into it as either the main character or an additional character.

Here are the directions for our 3-day unit:

1. We talk about media literacy. Today, one girl said it was like “reading pictures.” I liked that a lot. As a group, we defined media as the plural of medium and gave examples of both:

Media = how to convey or communicate information or mass communication, the news are described as “the media” and can share information using a variety of means (television, radio, internet, etc…)

Medium = how something is communicated or expressed: a drawing, painting, watercolor, television, email, texting, movies, music, commercial, song, newspaper, internet, magazine

2. We watch the Evolution video from Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty.

3. We talk about how easy it is to use technology to manipulate an image and why. (Marketing!)

4. We do a brief tour of the Google Art Project. (http://googleartproject.com)

With a team of Googlers working across many product areas we are able to harness the best of Google to power the Art Project experience. Few people will ever be lucky enough to be able to visit every museum or see every work of art they’re interested in but now many more can enjoy over 30 000 works of art from sculpture to architecture and drawings and explore over 150 collections from 40 countries, all in one place.

5. We talk about Artstor and it’s subscription service which Columbia University pays for. We look at the Permitted and Prohibited uses. I remind them that it is super important to read the terms and conditions of a website so that they avoid doing anything illegal or unethical (whether intentionally or accidentally). Everything they do online public, permanent, and traceable. (http://artstor.org)

The ARTstor Digital Library is a nonprofit resource that provides more than one million digital images in the arts, architecture, humanities, and sciences with an accessible suite of software tools for teaching and research. Our community-built collections comprise contributions from outstanding international museums, photographers, libraries, scholars, photo archives, and artists and artists’ estates.

6. Students choose a Renaissance painting from Artstor that they will manipulate. The directions for the project are here.

7. We talk about ownership of Art. Who owns the Mona Lisa? Yoshiko made a simple slideshow about variations of the Mona Lisa here. We discuss copyright and fair use and discuss Shepard Fairey’s Obama Hope painting. My lesson plan is here.

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Just found out about the app Masterpiece Me!

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Download Masterpiece Me! here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/masterpiece-me/id428061219?mt=8

I just found out about Masterpiece Me! from another Technology Integrator at my school, Andrew Gardner (@agardnahh), who works with grades 3-5.

In his email to me, Andrew sent a pic of himself inserted into a Frieda Kahlo portrait and included the following text: Hahaha, your photoshop project with 6th grade is better, but this sure is fun and simple. I wonder if the producers got liscensing??

I’m hoping/assuming that the paintings included in Masterpiece Me! are all in the public domain.

I teach a Photoshop project for middle school students where I show the basics of Photoshop, but I also discuss media literacy and copyright. The past couple of years, students layered themselves into a Renaissance painting as part of an integrated study of the Renaissance in English, Social Studies, Science, Spanish, Music.

This year, we spent three days alternating between learning how to navigate Photoshop and discussing fair use, copyright, public domain, Shepard Fairey’s Hope painting, and the Mona Lisa.

A brief overview of the Photoshop project is here: http://karenblumberg.com/minorpieces-of-the-renaissance

My copyright lesson is here: http://karenblumberg.com/using-the-mona-lisa-and-shepard-fairey-to-dis

A quick how-to Photoshop slide show is here: http://karenblumberg.com/these-are-the-incomplete-directions-for-my-6t

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Publicly learning my lesson about properly using digital images from Artstor.org

As per my last post, I just finished a Renaissance Photoshop art project with 6th graders where we located digital images of Renaissance paintings from ARTstor‘s online digital gallery and then used Photoshop to layer themselves into the painting. During the course of the 3-day project, we had discussions about copyright, fair use, and public domain. We talked about how the Mona Lisa and all the other works we were altering are in the public domain, and our contributions to the original paintings were copyrightable.

I said that there were two possible hiccups preventing us from going forth and copyrighting our art: Our digital images of the paintings came from http://ARTstor.org, and the hardware/software we used is owned by Columbia University. Because I hate being ignorant and I love being right, I contacted ARTstor to find out if we could convince ourselves that we owned our altered image. I spoke to Cassy Juhl, a User Services Associate, who conferred with ARTstor’s lawyers and emailed me a few days later. Essentially, we can access/view/use images from ARTstor for academic and non-commercial purposes because Columbia University subscribes to their service. However, since ARTstor does not own the images in their digital collection, they can’t authorize manipulation of the files. I reminded the kids that ignorance is a terrible excuse for doing something unethical; Since we now know that we can’t use ARTstor’s images for this project, we cannot further ignore and abuse their Terms and Conditions of Use.

So, my latest idea is to generate our own collection of digital images of works of art at The School at Columbia University. Tons of museums allow no-flash photography, so I (or my students) can just gather our own photos of public domain art that we can then freely alter. As per the Mona Lisa, I’ll either have to elbow through the throngs of tourists at The Louvre this summer to take the best possible photo of her or establish a contact that can offer us a fair use copy.

Below is Cassy’s response that I shared with my 6th graders:

Dear Karen,
Thank you for your phone call.  After looking into your question regarding ownership of an altered image and I have a response for you. The ARTstor Terms and Conditions of Use ( http://www.artstor.org/our-organization/o-pdf/terms-conditions.pdf ) prohibit the modification of ARTstor images.
Specifically, see Section 6:

Prohibited Uses. You may not: (a) use the ARTstor Digital Library, or use, display or make performances with, reproduce, or distribute Content from the ARTstor Digital Library, for any commercial purpose whatsoever, including but not limited to fee-for-service use of the ARTstor Digital Library, or make any use, display, performance, reproduction, or distribution that exceeds or violates these Terms and Conditions of Use; (b) distribute and/or make available Content in the ARTstor Digital Library to persons other than as expressly permitted herein; (c) provide and/or authorize access to the ARTstor electronic database, such as through the sharing of passwords, to persons or entities other than Authorized Users; (d) download or print, or attempt to download or print, substantial portions of the ARTstor Digital Library; (e) incorporate Content into print or electronic materials that are for purchase or are disseminated for commercial purposes (such as by a scholarly or commercial press); (f) use (including reproduce, distribute, display or make performances of) the ARTstor Digital Library in any way that is not authorized under this Agreement and that infringes another’s Intellectual Property Rights therein; (g) make any adaptation or modification of, or any derivative work from, Content; or (h) attempt to override, circumvent, or disable any encryption features or software protections employed in the ARTstor Digital Library.

ARTstor does not own any of the images in the Digital Library and as such we are unable to broker rights for said images.  We are only able to offer high quality images because our contributors provide images to be used for the very specific uses outlined in our Terms and Conditions of Use.
Please feel free to contact us with any further questions or concerns.
Kind regards,
Cassy Juhl
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Cassy Juhl
User Services Associate
ARTstor

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