Work Samples

Hello,

Thank you for you interest in my work. I have included some basic information about myself below as well as samples of my sculptural and functional work. I have focused my practice on the ceramic arts but have also included the drawings that inform my sculptural practice.

I am a recent Masters of Fine Art Graduate from the Pratt Institute and hold a Bachelor of Fine Art with a double major in painting and drawing and ceramics from the University of Manitoba. I am passionate about ceramics and teaching and believe that creative exploration can be incredibly empowering and important to the development of critical thinking and self-confidence. It is always exciting to watch a child’s creative endeavors be inspired by the learning that is happening in other coursework. It is also inspiring to see the confidence that is built and the skills that are learned, through the freedom of expression that art allows, be applied to other fields.

As an art instructor I have taught elementary and junior high aged children with a wide range of interests and abilities. I developed a curriculum and lesson plans that would encourage creative growth and material exploration. I also taught technical drawing skills. The final projects that incorporated these skills ranged in medium from graphite on paper, to watercolor or silkscreen. It was important to me that students begin each project inspired and also be able to contextualize their work. Looking at other artists, historical and contemporary, whose work aligned with the students interests and project themes was often a beginning point. Classroom lessons were sometimes supplemented with field trips to local galleries and museums. The focus of the curriculum was threefold, material exploration, the development of skill, encouragement of creative and critical thinking. You might also be interested to know that I have also worked with youth as a coach, camp councillor and resident advisor.

Over the past year I have worked at the Pratt Institute as the Graduate Assistant for the Ceramics Department. In this position I instructed students in the proper use of equipment, aided in the resolution of technical issues in student projects, prepared the studio and materials for classes, and supervised the studio. I loaded and unloaded kilns and was responsible for keeping the studio open and functioning outside of class hours. I also managed a group of student workers and ensured safely protocol was followed by all workers and students.

My education in the area of ceramics is extensive. I focused my MFA thesis at the Pratt Institute on ceramic sculpture and received my undergraduate degree from the University of Manitoba with a Major in Ceramics. I am technically skilled in hand-building, wheel throwing and casting. In addition to sculpture, I also maintain a significant practice of producing functional work. I am also experienced in the firing of a variety of kilns. This experience allows me to problem solve with students who come up against technical or conceptual obstacles in their studies. I have a solid background in the history of ceramics which can be helpful when encouraging students to tell their own stories or explore the artwork of another culture through their work in the studio.

I am a highly motivated individual with effective planning and organizational skills that allow for the effective management of long and short term initiatives. I have excellent communication and interpersonal skills resulting in strong relationships with peers and co-workers. Please find samples of my work inserted below.

Thank you,

Alana MacDougall

 

Work Samples:

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