My Drawing I course is a foundations drawing course, originally designed to function within the standard Foundations curriculum used at Michigan State University. This is an observational drawing course centered on learning to see objects and spatial relationships – and on rendering these objects and relationships two-dimensionally, using a range of drawing techniques and materials. This observational drawing practice is presented within a larger context of historic and contemporary drawing.
Throughout the semester, students engage in an intensive life-drawing practice, gaining experience drawing from still life arrangements, natural outdoor environments (plants, gardens, landscape), taxidermy animals, and human models.
In addition to a daily drawing practice, students participate in classroom critiques, view slideshows, research online or in the library, and write blogs.
I designed this student-centered course for those majoring in Design and Studio Art; students have also taken it as an elective. Students learn to evaluate their own and others’ drawings by working in small groups to help each other compile portfolios of their strongest drawings.
In various iterations of this course, students have finished the semester by planning and completing a significant final project of their own creation, often a series, or by completing a large-scale self-portrait following extended time drawing from models.