Professional Learning

Take a Look at the Collaboration and Creativity at Our Last NOW Conference!

There is something special—and incredibly motivational—about spending time with our community of amazing art teachers. Whether you attend online or in-person, conferences provide the perfect opportunity to collaborate with like-minded teachers from across the country. You have the chance to see inspiring presentations, learn about fresh topics in art education, and bring relevant ideas back to your classroom. Conferences can also give you the time to tap into your creativity, explore new artmaking techniques, and even create work of your own.

The Summer 2021 NOW Conference, with featured presenter Phil Hansen, offered all of these opportunities and more. Along with talking about his life and his own artwork, Phil created an interactive art experience with over 2,000 attendees. It allowed art teachers to create and collaborate on a unique artwork designed specifically for the conference.

Phil asked art teachers to draw, write, scribble, design, and get creative throughout his presentation. Then, teachers submitted their creations to him. He printed the drawings, designs, and writings on tiny pieces of paper and combined them into a beautiful, large-scale mosaic artwork.

View the video below or at this link to see how everything came together in the final piece!

If you were at the conference and want to zoom in to find your own contribution to the collaborative work, Phil set up a link for you to do just that!

For a lot of teachers, the opportunities to create hands-on work are few and far between. This interaction made Phil’s presentation welcome and well-received by attendees. Fortunately, the NOW Conference always focuses on giving you multiple opportunities to make your own work! You can even have a swag box of artmaking materials delivered to your door. The plethora of presentations will provide you with designated and guided time to spend making art.

Along with those opportunities, the camaraderie with the art teacher community will help you discover new, relevant, and exciting ideas for your classroom. Whether you need information, inspiration, or time to create with like-minded teachers, the NOW Conference is one of the best PD days you will find. Make it a priority to attend the next one—you will thank yourself later!

Learn more and register for the next NOW Conference!

What did you think about Phil Hansen’s presentation and interactive artwork? 

Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.


Timothy Bogatz

Tim Bogatz is AOEU’s Content & PD Event Manager and a former AOEU Writer and high school art educator. He focuses on creativity development, problem-solving, and higher-order thinking skills in the art room.

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