Visual Journal Page 35: Empty Bowls


Getting involved in the community is a wonderful way to teach people how to be humble, thankful, and give back to others. I participated in community service in high school, and it had a great impact on me; especially at a time when I was so impressionable. Because I had such a good experience I wanted to make sure community service was somehow incorporated into my teaching.

Before I started my current job I heard about a project called Empty Bowls. For the project, students hand-make ceramic bowls and donate them to a dinner. The students then organized a soup dinner, which people pay money to attend, eat food, look at the artwork, and take home a handmade bowl. Typically the proceeds are donated to a food pantry or soup kitchen, and the dinner helps raise awareness about hunger issues on a worldwide and community level. The handmade bowl is meant to serve as decoration and a reminder of all the people who are chronically hungry.

When I heard about this project I knew I wanted to get involved in it. Luckily, the art teacher I started working with had already hosted one. I was excited in my first year to be involved in such a wonderful event. We ended up donating $800.00 to the local food pantry. Not only did it get our students involved in their community, but it showed them how fortunate they are to have what they have. For those who are less fortunate, we were able to give to an organization that may have helped their family in a time of need. We finished up our 4th annual Empty Bowls dinner in December 2011, and I look forward to hosting the 5th one next Fall.


To create this visual journal page I wanted to make sure that I incorporated things we actually used in the dinner.

  1. I overlapped and glued down the Empty Bowls tickets for the background.
  2. I then glued down ticket stubs used for the prize drawing to help the Empty Bowls logo pop.
  3. To create the logo I sketched it out in pencil, then filled it in with Sharpie. Looking back to improve the page

Thanks for checking out one of my early visual journal pages, check out more here. Interested in tools to help make your teaching life easier? Check out my art education resources here. Don’t forget to connect on Instagram and TikTok for tutorials and more.

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