VAFA111 Drawing Basics

Department of The Arts: Visual Arts

I. Course Number and Title
VAFA111 Drawing Basics
II. Number of Credits
3 credits
III. Minimum Number of Instructional Minutes Per Semester
IV. Prerequisites
V. Other Pertinent Information

Students selecting Fine Arts, Graphic Design, Multimedia, or Fine Woodworking as their major must schedule an entrance portfolio review with the Department of the Arts.

VAFA111 is required for all first-semester art majors without an entrance portfolio. It may be taken as an elective course by all non-art majors. No nude models are used.

Based on the portfolio review, VAFA111 may be recommended for development of drawing skills prior to enrolling in VAFA100 Drawing Fundamentals.

Weekly homework required outside of class is generally 5 hours.

VI. Catalog Course Description
This course introduces and reinforces preliminary skills related to basic drawing concepts. The course comprehends three major units: (1) Simple shapes and Proportions; (2) Measuring and Perspective; and (3) Light and Composition. Students improve their concentration in a studio setting and develop essential skills related to drawing structural forms.
VII. Required Course Content and Direction
  1. Learning Goals:

    1. Course
    2. Students will:
      1. practice basic skills, including drawing shapes, drawing simple geometric and organic forms, analyzing proportions, creating simple line drawings using contour techniques, and measuring angles;
      2. create the illusion of three-dimensional space on a two-dimensional surface (i.e. using techniques such as the system of linear perspective or the analysis of light and form);
      3. practice concentrating on their work for extended periods of time;
      4. demonstrate a professional attitude in the studio and in the timely completion and presentation of their work; and
      5. analyze projects through critiques, oral presentations, and discussions.

    3. Core (if applicable)
    4. Category I:
      Creative Expression
      Students will:
      1. create a unique, personal, finished product appropriate to the medium.
      2. perform a critical examination and assessment of their work, as well as the work of others.
      3. demonstrate an understanding of the language, formal qualities, structure, and interpretive methodologies relative to the medium.
  2. Planned Sequence of Topics and/or Learning Activities:

    Throughout the semester, students practice representational drawing of simple geometric objects, simple organic objects, three-dimensional space, and light on form. Specifically students use mostly pencil (and perhaps also charcoal and other traditional black and white media), to explore:
    1. visual relationships (comparing objects to each other, comparing objects to negative space, and analyzing an object in relationship to the picture plane;
    2. line as used to describe form and volume;
    3. light as it affects the perception of form;
    4. value and tone;
    5. proportional relationships of all things in their context;
    6. one- and two-point linear perspective to create the illusion of 3-dimensional space on a 2-dimensional surface; and
    7. linear perspective as it applies to landscapes.

    Students create simple drawings based on visual analysis. They evaluate and critique their work, as well as the work of their peers.
  3. Assessment Methods for Core Learning Goals:

    1. Course
      1. Course learning goals are assessed with group critiques of all assignments, based on the successful design, execution, and completion of specific projects.
      2. At least two individual critiques with the instructor are held each semester, to assess projects using the above criteria and to review students' overall progress.
      3. Students' portfolios are assessed for the aesthetic quality and progress.

    2. Core (if applicable)
    3. Student assessment in Creative Expression is based on the mastery of in-class drawing exercises, the timely completion of problem-based drawing assignments, the presentation of these drawings in accordance with professional standards, the demonstrated use of appropriate vocabulary in an oral critique of a work of art, and on the overall aesthetic quality of the student’s work based on the media, the subject, the composition, and formal qualities such as scale, perspective, line, shape, value, texture, and tone.
  4. Reference, Resource, or Learning Materials to be used by Students:

    May include, but are not limited to presentation of material through lectures that are supplemented with slides, videos, books, digital formats, and demonstrations. See course format.
VIII. Teaching Methods Employed
Section VIII is not being used in new and revised syllabi as of 12/10/08.

Review/Approval Date - Unavailable; Revised 4/2010; Revised 8/2010; Core Added 2/2012; Revised 4/2012