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SSIS ibvahandbook

  1. 1. 1|Page IB VISUAL ART STUDENT HANDBOOK “Untitled” by Nguyen Phuong Anh THIS HANDBOOK CONTAINS LOADS OF ESSENTIAL INFO. KEEP IT SAFE! Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  2. 2. 2|PageWelcome to SSIS HS- IB Visual Arts.This course promises to be a very challenging and rewarding experience for those of you who canmatch it with the effort and time required for success.This is our first year to offer IB Visual Arts at SSIS and you will be the first art class taking it. It isrigorous but at the same time rewarding.As an educator, my main goal for you is to enjoy the subject. Second, I want you to be thinkers, risk-takers, explorers, and reflective with any work that you are doing. You should always try to learn fromyour mistakes and do not dwell with your success. Of course in the beginning, you will have a lot ofquestions, uncertainties.To begin your journey, here is the basic manual that I developed using different and my own resources.1: THE BASICSDuring the IB course you will produce:Studio Work: 60% (Option A) 40% (Option B)Drawings, paintings, prints, ceramics, sculptures, collages, design work, digital artwork, photography,architectural models, textiles, mixed media work etc. If you are digital photo students, you can usephotograph and digital media manipulation.Your Studio Work must show your personal interests and artistic skills through a range of differentmedia and techniques.IB encourages students to look at your own cultures and personal interests.You will aim to complete at least one piece of Studio Work each month starting in September of Grade11. Therefore by the end of Grade11 you will have 9-12 completed pieces of work. In Grade 12 youwill be able to complete at least a further 8 pieces of work. This does not include any work done duringthe holidays. For your final exhibition you will have at least 17 Studio Work pieces, but preferably 24or more!Investigation Workbooks (IWBs): 40% (Option A) 60% (Option B) Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  3. 3. 3|PageIWBs are like sketchbooks, but so much more! Your IWBs will contain written notes, photos,exhibition leaflets, postcards, sketches, experiments with different media, written analysis of artworks,brainstorming ideas, art making process documentations, as well as more ‘finished’ drawings andpaintings. You can basically put anything you want into your IWB as long as it supports thedevelopment of your artistic ideas and skills.You will need to complete 5 or more IWB pages each week. Most of this will be done in your studyperiods or at home. By the end of December you will have over 50 pages completed! Some weeks youwill find you are able to do more than 5 pages because of your wonderful ideas. Excellent – but thatdoes not mean the next week you do not have to do any! Remember, holidays are a great opportunityto collect information, sketch, record and develop ideas, especially if you are in another country.By the end of the course, you should aim to have at least five thick IWBs completed.Option B students where in their main study is on the IWB are expected to produce at least twice asthose with option A both in quality and quantity.Self-AssessmentYou will be very much involved in assessing your own work every month, referring to the IBassessment criteria in detail. You will also receive comments from me that are useful in showing bothyour strong points and reminding you of areas where improvements are needed.There will be regular opportunities for you to discuss and explain your work and ideas in groupdiscussions. You will also be asked to comment upon other IB students’ work. SSIS Atrium Panorama by Vivian Nguyen Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  4. 4. 4|Page GETTING2: GETTING STARTEDArt EquipmentDuring the school day, you will be able to use the Art Studio facilities and equipment at any time.However, much of your work will also be done outside school, during the evenings, weekends, andholidays. For this reason, you must collect as wide a range of art media as possible, to help youdevelop and practice your skills in your own time. A suggested starter’s list would be: ESSENTIAL: PRICE (each) VND 200 pages A4 spiral- or hardbound sketchbook with good quality paper (available in our school’s store) VND 120,000 2B, 4B and 6B sketching pencils (Faber Castell brand) VND 15,000 Good quality eraser (Staedtler or Rotring brand) VND 15,000 Glue Stick or PVA glue VND 18,000 Digital camera – point and shoot only (minimum of 3megapixel) RECOMMENDED: Pack 12 x colour pencils (any brand) VND 55,000 Black pens 0.2, 0.5 (Art line) VND 15,000 Pack 36 x oil pastels (Pentel or Mango brand) VND 30,000 Pack 18 x acrylic paints (Reeves or Pebeo brand) VND 80,000 Set of Flat and pointed brushes Printer (to print photos, resources) when you are working your IWB at homeThese items are available locally in stores like those art shops along Le Loi Street, or those shops infront of HCMC University of Architecture, along Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street, HCMC Fine ArtAssociation in Pasteur Street, or Art Friend at Le Thi Rieng Street. The brand names are suggestionsonly and many good alternatives are available.If you expect to be doing lots of painting at home, invest in larger tubes of acrylic and oil paint that canbe bought individually. 100ml tubes of Pebeo or Windsor and Newton brand acrylic are good value.Try to get as many of these items as you can, and add to your supply of art materials when you are ableto. The first four items on the list are urgent purchases – please buy these as quickly as possible!Setting up a work space (not essential, but useful!)It would be a real advantage if you have enough space to create a ‘mini-studio’ at home. This willmean that it is much easier for you to work, as your art equipment will always be out and ready for youwhen inspiration strikes and any wet work can be left to dry overnight etc. In addition to all your artequipment, it should include: 1. A large flat table surface and comfortable chair. Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  5. 5. 5|Page 2. A good source of natural light and/or a bright desk lamp (overhead lights tend to cast annoying shadows onto your work at night). You can even buy ‘daylight’ bulbs for desk lamps! 3. A 12” mirror, if you’re interested in producing self portraits. A full-length mirror would be ideal for figure drawing. 4. An easel (table or standing easel)Investigation Workbooks (IWBs)These are working journals of your life as an artist over the next two years! The purpose of theinvestigation workbook is to encourage personal investigation into visual arts which must be closelyrelated to the studio work.What is the size of an ideal IWB?You will need to get an A4 sketchbook with reasonably thick white cartridge paper. You can use ourusual SSIS art journal spiral-bound available at our school’s store. You will be working on both sidesof the paper. You should aim to fill around 4- 8 of these sketchbooks during the IB course!How do I start?Put your name and address (or school address) inside the front cover. A phone number or emailaddress is essential – you don’t want to lose it! Oh yes, also put the date. Then leave the first pageblank, this can be used as a table of contents later. Now number each page on the bottom right. Youwill be using both sides of ALL the pages.Good working habitso Work in your IWB every day – get into the habit, starting today. Several good IWB sessions spread throughout the week are always better than hours of rushed work late at night! Remember that drawing and designing your IWB pages will be an excellent creative break from other types of academic study – you should enjoy it: it’s why you’ve chosen this course, right?!o When you finish working in your IWB for the day always put the date, including the year. This is so that your progress throughout the course can be clearly seen. Every week you will be asked to take picture of each IWB pages (530px width x 780px height @72dpi) and will be chronologically arrange either in one of the folder in your laptop, showing then on online blog or using external host like This is to digitally back up your IWB in case you lost it. Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  6. 6. 6|Pageo When you write in your IWB always use black or blue pen, and write clearly. You need to remember that some of the selected pages will be photocopied and will be part of your Research Booklet. You need to write legibly so to be able to read it. You should try to make your IWB a pleasure to look at and read! Don’t use coloured pens to write with, unless it’s really appropriate to your work (ie your main theme is ‘strong colours’!o Never ever cut or tear pages out from your IWB! Don’t stick pages together even if you have made what you think is a mistake or a terrible drawing. The IWB has to show mistakes, good work and very importantly your development as an artist over a period of time – if you hide your weaker work, how can the examiner see how much you have improved? If you are working and experimenting with material that takes longer time to dry, it is advisable to do the experiment on a separate sheet of paper. Once it dried, you paste it in your IWB.o You remember to number the pages? This makes it easy to refer back to an idea or thought. For instance, on p.60 you might sketch an idea and remember that you did something similar before. You could then write: “The drawing on p.27 could become a linoprint, see my notes on printing p.46.” Also remember to cross-reference it on pages 27 and 46!o When drawing something from observation, write down where you are and why you have chosen to draw it. Make notes on the weather or light if appropriate. A photograph of the subject can be very useful if you are going to develop the sketch into a painting or sculpture. Always take your camera!o If you have used a book or the Internet to find an image or info, always write down the full reference in your IWB – you may need to find the information again at a later date. The same idea goes for magazine articles, television programmes and films. Sources of information must always be acknowledged – even postcards from exhibitions that you stick in your IWB.o Putting Captions. Always write captions, blurbs or critical comments on magazine clippings, doodles, sketches, articles or photographs that you are using in your IWB. You need to explain why they are there, and the relevance of such to the topic being investigated. Do not use such materials just to fill in your IWB without any relation to the subject being investigated.o IWB prepare the Studio work, Studio work fills the IWB. The IWBs are the preparatory tools in starting any studio work, and when studio work is on process it fills the IWB. It’s always advisable to document properly the art making procedure and investigation in you IWB. You should use your IWB to document what you are doing during the Studio work and not when studio work has finished. You can take photographs on important and critical stages of your work. This will apply also when you are using digital media. When working with digital media, you need to provide screen grabs that shows the development of your work.o Collaboration. Collaboration with your peers and outsiders (e.g, tailors for fashion design, carpenters for furniture design etc,) must be properly documented. You have to provide the scope and individual input on the collaborative work and the area where you are taking part. If you are collaborating with artisans, you need to show actual documents such as videos that you can upload to Youtube or other video hosting sites. Link of such video must be notated in the IWB. Photographs can also be used as evidence but they should be accompanied by critical explanations. You need to properly show evidences of your individual and personal hands on achievement. If you are doing a design (logo design, interior and advertisement design) you should have clients to Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  7. 7. 7|Page work with. Meetings and conversation, collaboration and working with clients must be properly documented.o There should be written comments on every page of your RWB, even if you just write the date! Be more analytical in giving comment rather than descriptive (more analysis, less descriptions).o You should make comments on your feelings, how your work is progressing and what successes you have had. You should also write about any research or technical problems you have encountered (eg. how to create a realistic 3D ‘space’ in a drawing) and how you have solved these.o You should make comments on your attitudes about life, social, cultural and political concerns. Think about the big world outside school and IB! The IWB is yours, so it should reflect your beliefs! These comments can be related to art you are researching or artwork that you are producing.o You should write about any connections you might see between Art and your other IB subjects: Literature, Science, ToK etc. Make links across the curriculum and follow up your ideas! For instance, the study of blood cells in Biology might inspire some prints of tiny natural objects, the contour lines or grids in maps from Geography might be combined into landscape drawings, the description of characters in a novel might inspire a series of imaginative portraits etc….o You should make notes on which materials you have used in your studio work experiments. The type of paper, the type of medium, what type of glue gives the best results, which clay you used and how wet it was, which glaze and what temperature it was fired to, etc. This will save you a lot of time when later you need a specific result!o You should always make creative connections in the work that you do through open-ended exploration and experimentation. E.g. You might begin your experimentation by working on an idea, a theme or an issue. You should write your finding by making comparisons, cross-referencing and thinking laterally.o When trying out any new medium; inks, graphite, chalk pastel, oil bars etc. experiment with it, find out what you can do with it (by drawing in your IWB) and make notes about what you discover. Imagine that you are carrying out a scientific experiment and recording your results.However….When you are writing in your IWB, don’t forget that the IB is an academic course and that your writtennotes should reflect that. Describe your feelings, successes and failures, comment upon your ownprogress, and your ideas about life but DON’T use slang or informal English nor text speak nor writeusing Jejemon’s style (combinations of lower and uppercase letters)! Remember that this is your IWB,but it’s not being written for your friends – an IB examiner will be reading it!Always try to use the correct art vocabulary in your IWB. Look at for a great exampleof an Art-specific dictionary online. There are some pages explaining art vocabulary later in thisbooklet. Remember proper use of art vocabularies is one of the strands in evaluating your IWB.Second hand resources must be acknowledged. Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  8. 8. 8|PageIWB CriteriaYour Investigation work will be developed and evaluated according to several key criteria. Some ofthem overlap and involve other criteria, and should be considered parts of a holistic approach to yourbook. They are:a. Cultural/Contextual research – This refers to the degree to which your investigation work book shows that you analyzed, considered, compared and reflected upon art from other cultures and time periods, especially its function and significance, both within its original context and today. We do not create art in a vacuum. All art is interrelated.b. Technical/Process (Visual experiment and research) – this criterion references your book’s ability to display the degree to which you kept careful record of how you developed effective skills and awareness of techniques and processes that enabled you to create your studio pieces. It also refers to work in your book that shows that you developed your ability to understand and discuss the techniques and methodologies of other artists.c. Investigation (independent research) - This refers to evidence in your book that you developed clear, coherent strategies for investigating the visual qualities, ideas and their contexts, and various (ie. More than one) approach to ways of formulating your art. It also examines how your book shows evidence of connections between all these things.d. Depth & Breadth – This is a difficult one to understand easily, but you’ll get used to it. It is like the above criterion c, but most specifically it refers to the degree to which your book shows evidence that your research and investigations took in a broad range of influences, ideas and inspirations that helped you to formulate a successful synthesis of these for your own work. It also looks at the degree to which you examined these thoroughly, pushing your understanding of them and helping you to infuse your work with a more informed and articulate means of expression and meaning.e. Vocabulary – This criterion examines the evidence in your book that indicates the degree to which you learned and became familiar with an effective and accurate specialist vocabulary in the visual arts. A god artist uses the proper terminology to refer to his or her work and the work of others.f. Acknowledgment of Sources – As in all your coursework in the IB, it is important that you cite the sources and origins of the work you do in this class. This criterion considers the degree to which you accurately and consistently cite the sources you use in your book.g. Presentation – This criterion looks at how you present your work in your book. It considers effective and creative writing regarding your work and the degree to which you demonstrate thoughtful, critical evaluations of your work. It also looks for evidence that you were discriminating in the ways that you chose your methods and approaches towards your work.h. Integration – This criterion refers to your book’s relevance to your studio work. All that you do in your book should reference your studio work. This criterion evaluates the level to which your studio work is emphatically evolved, supported, justified and explained in your book. It is imperative that this be seen as a developmental process – it should be continuously taking place as you develop your work, not simply after the fact. Your Investigation workbook is an organic work, not a scrapbook in which you paste what you’ve accomplished. It should grow and develop with your studio work and reflect that fact. Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  9. 9. 9|PageStudio Works:Studio Works are the actual projects that you will be producing. They are usually the result of yourinvestigation in your IWB.I will be giving you prompts. These prompts have background information and questions which cannotbe answer by yes or no. At the beginning, I will be very strict in engaging you in addressing suchprompt using your IWB. You will only start your Studio work when you have sufficient preparatory work inside your IWB. Your Studio work will be developed and evaluated according to several key criteria. Some of them overlap and involve other criteria, and should be considered parts of a holistic approach to your work. They are: a. Understanding - This refers to the degree to which your work reflects an understanding of how one can express concepts and ideas in the visual image, as well as how well you grasp the technical and formal methods through which these can be conveyed. b. Relevance – This refers to the degree to which your work reflects or conveys personal elements“Abstract Lights” by Lena Pham (Where are YOU in the work? How this work is related to you.); the degree to which your work shows your awareness and understanding of socio-cultural issues and concerns; and finally the degree to which your work shows evidence of well-developed, complex ideas and approaches to your given theme.c. Development – This refers to the level of development of both your ideas and your technical competence with your chosen media or mode of expression.d. Sensitivity to materials – This criterion concerns your ability to use and in some cases develop novel uses for your materials. It refers most importantly to your ability to review and modify your use of materials, so that your work shows evidence of increasingly well-informed resolutions of concepts and the ideas that can be conveyed in your work.e. Technique – This is related to both a and d above. It refers to your mastery and understanding of the media you have chosen to explore. A student in our IB art program is free to choose whatever medium he or she wishes, but they must be able to demonstrate that they have learned a great deal of the handling, potential and limits of that medium.f. Confidence – this criterion refers to the degree to which you work shows evidence of a confident, inventive and wholly personal approach to image-making, one that does not rely heavily on existing art, historical precedent or teacher guidance.g. Independence – This criterion looks at the degree to which your work shows self-direction and use of your own judgment. Ultimately, your work must be entirely your own and should show that you arrived at the visual statement it makes on your own accord. This has a great deal to do with the above criterion f. Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  10. 10. 10 | P a g eExpectationsIn your first year, you will be expected to develop a familiarity and fluency with these criteria. Inaddition, it is always my belief that concentrated investigation always begin when you have a theme.This theme is not required by the IB, but I will encourage you to always be looking on developing atheme. You can always develop easily a series of studio works based upon a theme of your choice. Onthe other hand, if a certain theme is the reason that inhibits you to go and explore further, then by anymeans you need to jump to another area of interest. You can always link your new interest with the oldtheme of your choice.Think of a camera. Your theme is the lens through which you approach your work. It can, of course,change and evolve (indeed, it should!) and that change and evolution should be well documented in theInvestigation workbook.Your pace throughout the first year will be your own, but you will be expected to complete at least onemajor, finished studio work per month.Possible themes and promptsThe following are possible prompts and themes: • Self (you, your identity, self image, self-esteem) or dark self (see C.G. Jung) • Family or ethnic group (not necessarily yours) • Science & Technology • Vietnamese Culture/ Vietnamese art/history • Current events (just like what happen in the past Swine Flu, Haiti etc) • Global Issues • Dreams/the surreal world,/alternate reality/questioning reality • Society/Public vs. Private • Gender issues/ Sexual politics • Capitalism/ (Free)Trade/Economic equality/Globalism • Conflict/resolution/war/peace • Art/History/Art History/Interpretation • Origins/Beginnings/Endings/divisions in time • Philosophy, Religious beliefs • Age/Adolescence/Biological growth/evolution • Location • Power • Symbols/Systems of Meaning/Codes • Social Networking/e-generation • Story/Narrative • Humour/dark humour/ • Shock/Horror/Ugliness Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  11. 11. 11 | P a g eIB Visual Arts Year 1 – List of Studio work accomplishedMonth Work Title(s) Media Used Describe brieflySeptemberOctoberNovemberDecemberJanuaryFebruaryMarchAprilMayCrop this down and paste it inside the back cover of your sketchbook. Keep it updated. It will helpyou keep track of what you have done and what remains to be done.Studio etiquetteNext January, we will be using the newly built high school building. This and the future art studio willbe your artistic home in the school. They are state-of-the-art facilities purpose built for your two-yearcreative journey. A great deal of your work will be done at home but you will also be working in thestudio and will be using materials and tools that are being kept here. Please keep in mind that otherstudents need to use these as well. Therefore, if we all abide by certain expectations in the studio,we’ll all benefit from it and from each other’s work: • All work and materials should be stored away. • All tools (especially brushes) should be properly cleaned and stored away. Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  12. 12. 12 | P a g e • All tables and flat surfaces should be kept free of paint, varnishes, dust, clay, ink and other working materials. • The outside studio is for our use, but should always be kept clear of objects and tools, free from paint and spray marks. • The school prohibits you to use iPods, MP3 players in the hallways. But in art room you can but only during the time you are doing your studio wok. Be sure they don’t disturb other students. Volume level must remain reasonable at all times even when you are listening through your ear plugs. I expect you to remove your ear plugs during discussion time. • You should not be browsing your Facebook/Twitter accounts/ Yahoo Messengers or any other social networking when you are using your laptops for the purpose investigations. Laptop screen must be put down during discussion time where there is no need to use laptops. • Sinks must be properly used – paint residue, refuse and traces of materials must not be permitted to collect in the basins. No volatile or oil-based solvents may be washed down the sinks in any quantity. All sediments (clay, plaster, etc) and acrylics must be washed up outside sink where we have a big sediment trap. • Ask Mr. Nguyen or me if you need supply in our material storage. The supply storge is out of bounds for students. The art room should be kept tidy and treated with respect. • Respect for other students’ work is imperative. • Additional expectations may be introduced as the year progresses.DeadlinesArguably, the most important skill you will learn in your early work in the IB Diploma program ismeeting deadlines. You will be expected to produce 16-20 finished works of art and some 300 pagesof investigative research in the IWB over the two year period. The only way you will be able to meetthese requirements is by meeting the deadlines set up Mr. Nomer.A calendar will be posted on a designated area as well as in Moodle. It will detail deadlines and duedates. It will also list special events like the portfolio workshop, fieldtrips, college representative visitsand the IB2 mock exams (in which you will participate). Keep watching and noting the calendar.Specialized Materials and Printing and Framing CostsIB Students often explore unconventional and specialized materials like huge canvass, bronze cast etc.Studio work will be printed in large format and art works will be framed for the final exhibition whichis the final students’ examination in IB. The cost of these specialized materials and printing will beborne by the IB candidates.Digital PortfolioOur school will introduce one on one laptop starting in the academic year 2010-2011. Our learningportal using applications like Moodle, Gapps, and Wordpress will be used extensively in building yourdigital portfolio. Alternatively we will use our main Art forum site at inshowing your digital portfolio. It is advisable to set up an account using to host your images of your art journal pages and studio work. Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  13. 13. 13 | P a g e3: WRITING ABOUT ARTWriting about Artworks – Do’s and Don’tsDon’t… Do…Write essays on the artist’s life history… Make notes on why you’re looking at this artist…(date of birth, favourite football team etc..) Anyone what you admire, what you don’t – how this artist’s work relateswith Encarta could do this. A few biographical to your Studio Work. Make your research personal to yourdetails are useful, but are not essential. particular project.Photocopy loads of artworks … Choose one or two good artworks …… and stick them into your RWB with no written … annotate them and make copies of them (to practice brushanalysis or other information. technique, colour mixing or something similar).… and forget to write the titles down! … include the artist’s name, title of the artwork, year, medium and where you found it (web address or book title and page).Treat your RWB like an exercise book … Think about your research in a visual way…Don’t produce blocks of writing, underlined, with no use colour, headings and images to complement your notes.visual consideration or interest. Compose the pages so that they look interesting and varied.Write without checking the facts! … Use the correct vocabulary…Make sure that you are accurate about dates, media i.e. ‘tone’ is more accurate that ‘light and shadow’. Rememberused and especially the gender of your chosen artist! that at IB level, you will be assessed on the quality of your written work! Don’t be afraid to use adjectives, especially when evaluating an artwork (giving your opinion).Plagiarise… Include one or two relevant quotations…(include quotations from other writers as if they are (e.g. the artist writing about his / her ideas OR a well-knownyour own words). This is always obvious to the critic) and always use quotation marks. Include the name of thereader. person who you are quoting and write down where you found it.Writing terms and techniques… tasks you will be asked to complete: To annotate To make short notes explaining or clarifying a point or drawing the viewer’s attention to something of relevance (e.g. ‘the wide range of tones here adds drama and interest’). To analyse To look closely and in detail at an artwork, noting down as many points as you can about the (see next piece. These points might cover things like: page) o Composition (the organisation of shapes within the work) o Use of colour / tone o Medium used (oil paint, photography, pastel) o Mood or emotion created o Content / narrative (what’s happening in this artwork? Is there a story?) o Issues covered (i.e. political, social, religious issues?) To compare To analyse two or more artworks at once, focusing on the similarities and differences and contrast between them. This is often easier than analysing a single artwork. To evaluate To make personal judgements about the artwork and to give your reasons i.e. Do you like the artwork? Why? What is good about it? What is not so good? The reasons for this will, of course, come from your analysis. Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  14. 14. 14 | P a g eAnalysing Artworks: A Step-by-Step Guide⇒ Follow these steps, answer all the questions and you can’t go wrong!⇒ Remember that your own drawings/copies of the artwork should accompany ALL written analysis.1: First Reaction o Are some parts of the composition full of shapes and some parts empty, or are the shapes spread evenlyWrite down your first response to the artwork. across the artwork?o Do you like it? o Are some shapes repeated or echoed in other parts ofo How does it make you feel? the artwork?o Does it remind you of anything you have seen before? o Does the whole composition look full of energy and2: Description movement, or does it look still and peaceful? How didList what you can see in this artwork. the artist create this movement/stillness?o Figures, colours, shapes, objects, background etc. o What is the centre of interest in the composition?o Imagine you are describing it to a blind person. Do o How does the artist draw your attention to it? this in as much detail as possible. Mood / Emotion: o What do you think the artist wanted you to feel when3: Formal Analysis you look at this artwork?Write down your observations in more detail, looking at o What has he/she used to create a mood? (think aboutthese specific aspects of the artwork: colour, shape, tone etc.)Colours: o How has he/she succeeded in creating this mood? (Foro which type of palette has the artist used: is it bright or example, strong vivid colours might be used to create dull, strong or weak? a joyful or angry mood in an artwork, depending upono are the colours mostly complementary, primary, how the artist has used them). secondary or tertiary? o Could the same mood have been created in a differento Which colour(s) are used most in this artwork? way? How could you change this?o Which colour(s) are used least in this artwork? 4: Interpretationo Are the colours used different ways in different parts of the artwork? Now write down your personal thoughts about the work:o Have the colours been applied flat, ‘straight from the there are no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ answers here! tube’, or have different colours been mixed? o What do you think the artist is trying to say in this artwork? what does it mean?Tones: o What is the main theme or idea behind this piece?o is there a use of light / shadow in this artwork? o If you were inside this artwork, what would you beo where is the light coming from? where are the feeling / thinking? shadows? o does the artwork have a narrative (tell a story)? is it ao Are the forms in the artwork realistically modelled religious artwork? (does it look 3D)? o is it abstract? is it realistic? Why?o is there a wide range of tonal contrast (very light o How would you explain this artwork to someone else? highlights and very dark shadows) or is the tonal range quite narrow (ie mostly similar tones)? 5: EvaluationUse of media: Based upon what you have observed already, give youro what medium has been used (oil paint, acrylic, opinion of the artwork. You MUST give reasons. Eg: charcoal, clay etc)? o “Franz Marc has created an effective expressiveo How has the artist used the medium – ie is the paint painting, because the hot colours and lively applied thick or thin? How can you tell? brushmarks he has used add to the overall feeling ofo Can you see brushstrokes, markmaking or texture? energy and excitement he is trying to create.” Describe the shape and direction of the brushstrokes / o “The overall mood of this drawing would be improved marks. What size of brush / pencil was used? if Kathe Kollowitz had used strong, dramatic shadows,o Was it painted, drawn, sculpted quickly, or slowly and instead of just pale tones. Dark tones would develop painstakingly? What makes you think this? the feeling of fear and loneliness in this image.”Composition (organisation of shapes): o “Picasso has used sharp, stabbing, geometric shapes ino what type of shapes are used in this artwork (ie some areas of his composition to create a sense of rounded, curved, straight-edged or geometric shapes)? violence and distress within ‘Guernica’. These makeo Is there a mixture of different types of shapes or are the figures and animals seem more vulnerable, as if in all the shapes similar? pain and suffering while under attack.” Saigon South International School IB Visual Arts Handbook
  15. 15. Writing about Painting – A glossary of useful terms:o Alla Prima the paint is applied in one layer only; there are no under-layers or over-working. The work of the Fauves was often alla-prima; their energetic, spontaneous style suited this method of working.o Gestural A loose, energetic application of paint which relies on the artist’s movements to make expressive marks on the canvas. This is supposed to be a very personal and unique way of working - almost like handwriting. Look at artists like Cy Twombly or Antoni Tapies for examples.o Glaze (or Wash) a semi-transparent layer of thinned paint. Many traditional painters like Michaelangelo made use of this technique to create the subtle tones of skin or fabric. For a more modern use of the glazing technique, look at the abstract, gestural paintings of Helen Frankenthaler.o Impasto a thick layer of paint, often applied in several layers with a brush or palette knife. Look at the dense, textural brushwork of paintings by artists like Gillian Ayres or Frank Auerbach.o Plein-aire a painting which has been made outside, often quite quickly, to cope with changing weather, light effects etc. The Impressionists were the first artists to paint outdoors, rather than in their studios. Before this, however, many artists had sketched outdoors in preparation for painting; the oil sketches of Constable are an excellent example.o Pointillist the use of many tiny dots of pure colour which seem to ‘blend’ when seen at a distance. Georges Seurat’s work is the most famous example of this almost-scientific technique. Look also at the paintings of his pupil, Paul Signac.o Scumbling a thin glaze of paint dragged over a different colour, so that both layers of paint can be seen, giving a luminous, glowing effect. Abstract painters like Mark Rothko made use of this technique.o Sfumato literally means ‘smoked’ in Italian; the use of heavy, dark tones to suggest mystery and atmosphere. Rembrandt’s late self portraits are a superb example of this technique in practice.o Sketch A quick painting, often made in preparation for the ‘final version’. See also ‘plein-aire’.‘Brushwork’The way in which the artist uses the brush to apply paint. Brushwork can be loose, energetic,controlled, tight, obsessive, repetitive, random etc.‘Palette’1. A wooden or plastic tray, used for mixing colours when making a painting.2. The choice of colours in a painting ie ‘van Gogh uses a pure and vivid palette in his Arleslandscapes’.‘Tone’ or ‘tonal’1. The elements of light and shadow in an artwork ie ‘Kathe Kollowitz’s etchings use strong, densetones to create an intense, sorrowful mood.2. The range of tones within an artwork ie ‘Rembrandt’s later portraits use a very dark tonal range’.‘Support’
  16. 16. The surface that a painting or drawing is produced on. Supports can be paper, card, wood, canvas,metal etc. ie ‘Antoni Tapies’s paintings sometimes look as if they have been attacked. The support isoften violently torn, ripped and stabbed into.’ “Marnie” by Vivian Nguyen
  17. 17. Writing about Colour – A glossary of useful terms:o Primary colours: red, yellow and blue. Primary colours can be used to mix a wide range of colours. There are cool and warm primary colours. (ie warm cadmium red and cool vermilion red OR warm primary yellow and cool lemon yellow.o Secondary colours: orange, green and purple. Secondary colours are mixed by combining two primary colours.o Complementary colours: pairs of opposite colours on the colour wheel: green-red, blue-orange and yellow-purple. Complementary colours are as contrasting as possible (ie there is no yellow at all in the colour purple). Painters like Andre Derain and van Gogh often made use of the contrasts of complementary colours in their paintings.o Tertiary colours: A wide range of natural or neutral colours. Tertiary colours are created by mixing two complementary colours together. Tertiary colours are the colours of nature: skin, plants, wood, stone etc.o Tones: are created by adding black to any colour. (ie maroon is a tone of red).o Tints: are created by adding white to any colour. (ie pink is a tint of red).o Palette: the choice of colours an artist makes; ie ‘Van Gogh uses a vivid palette to paint his Arles landscapes’.o Limited palette: the selection of only a few colours within an artwork; ie ‘In this drawing, Matisse has used a limited palette of ultramarine blues and purples to create a moody, subdued atmosphere.’o Broad palette: the use of a wide range of different colours within an artwork; ie ‘Kandinsky’s paintings are instantly recognisable for their use of geometric shapes, but also for the broad palette of colours he employs.’o Tonal range: the range of tones in an artwork from light to dark. A wide tonal range would include all tones from white to black. A narrow tonal range would include only pale tones, only mid tones or only dark tones; ie ‘Kathe Kollowitz’s etchings make powerful use of a narrow tonal range to create oppressive, dark images.’o Opacity: the density or thickness of the colour used; if the colour is strong and nothing can be seen beneath it, the colour is said to be opaque. Acrylic and oil colours are often opaque.o Transparency: thin, transparent colour, with perhaps other colours, shapes and lines visible beneath it. Watercolour paintings typically use transparent colour.o Useful adjectives you might use when describing COLOUR:Saturated, bright, pure, vivid, strong, harsh, dramatic, vibrant, brilliant, intense, powerful.Muted, subtle, gentle, dull, soft, watery, subdued, delicate, gloomy, tertiary, faded, limited.
  18. 18. Writing About Cultural Values Attached To The ArtsUseful terms to consider:When the arts of the past are seen in museums, they are effectively detached from the life of the culturewithin which they originated. If you only see these art objects in books or photographs, it is verydifficult to see them as a ‘real’ part of a living culture. To begin to understand the meanings variousarts had for the societies they came from, consider the following values:RELIGIOUS VALUES: Arts were often essential to the belief systems of many cultures; for example:statues of gods/deities, temples, icons, altarpieces, masks, music, dances etc.SOCIAL VALUES: Arts often symbolised group identity and pride; for example: banners,headdresses, tattooing, flags, chants, anthems etc.PSYCHO-EMOTIONAL: Arts sometimes provided assurance of the continuity of life; for example:portraits, epic poetry, mythological tales, hymns etc.USEFUL or PRACTICAL VALUES: Art was often an integral aspect of functional objects, both inshape and decoration; for example: knives, pottery, lamps, buildings etc.SENSUAL VALUES: Arts provided a direct source of sensual pleasure and perhaps an intrinsicallyaesthetic response; for example: textiles, clothing, sculpture, music etc.EDUCATIONAL VALUES: Arts were frequently a means of transmitting the values, attitudes andhistory of a culture; for example: cave painting, frescoes, illuminated manuscripts, epic poetry, historicdrama, tribal dance etc.DECORATIVE VALUES: Arts were used to enhance people’s appearance or to beautify theenvironment; for example: jewellery, wall-hangings, tapestries, clothing etc.COMMUNICATION VALUES: Arts reached the illiterate for whom the written word wasmeaningless; for example: friezes, stained glass windows, mosaics etc.AN EXAMPLE:Medieval cathedrals integrated most of the values above.The cathedrals were the focus of the religious life of the community even as they were being built byhundreds of ordinary people and skilled craftsmen over long periods of time. The towers symbolicallyrose high above the town and, within the walls, the sculpture and stained glass windows stirred theemotions of the faithful. Processions with banners, chants and the Mass, with its music, poetry anddrama, integrated the arts and values of the culture. All of this gave meaning and continuity to theotherwise impoverished lives of the common people.
  19. 19. 4: ASSESSMENTThere are six Assessment Objectives:Assessment Objective Which Assessment area How is the assessment objective addresses this objective addressed?1. Respond to and analyse critically Investigation workbooks External assessment option B; internaland contextually the function, assessmentmeaning and artistic qualities of past,present and emerging art, using the option A—investigation markbandspecialist vocabulary of visual arts. descriptors2. Develop and present independent Investigation workbooks External assessment option B; internalideas and practice, and explain the assessmentconnections between these and thework of others. option A—investigation markband descriptors3. Explore and develop ideas and Investigation workbooks External assessment option B; internaltechniques for studio work through assessmentintegrated contextual study and first-hand observations. option A—investigation markband descriptors4. Develop and maintain a close Investigation workbooks External assessment option B; internalrelationship between investigation assessmentand a purposeful, creative process instudio work. option A—investigation markband descriptors5. Produce personally relevant works Studio Work External assessment option A; internalof art that reveal evidence of assessmentexploration of ideas that reflectcultural and historical awareness option B—investigation markband descriptorsStudio work6. Develop and Studio Work External assessment option A; internaldemonstrate technical competence assessmentand artistic qualities that challengeand extend personal boundaries option B—investigation markband(option A) and technical competence descriptorsand self-direction (option B).
  20. 20. The Final Exam:In March / April of Year 12, you will organise an exhibition of your work which covers everything youhave produced during the whole IB course. Your exhibition will be assessed by a visiting examiner,who will also talk with you about your Studio Work and IWBs. In Year 12, you will have a mockinterview to give you some practice at this.You will also produce a Candidate Record Booklet, which contains photographs of your finishedStudio Work, photocopied pages from your IWBs and a 300 word statement about your developmentduring the course. This will be sent to the IBO for final assessment, so it must be of a high quality.This booklet will be produced right at the end of the course, so I’ll explain more about it at that time.