A resource site for students in Ethan Berry's Spring 2009 studio class titled; Artists Notebook.
Monday, January 26, 2009
The Artist’s Notebook DR311
SYLLABUS, Spring, 2009
Ethan Berry, Instructor 3 Credits, T/Th 3:30-6:10 Office Hours: Mon, Wed 8: 30-11:00 and by appointment eberry@ montserrat.edu
Course Description: Throughout history, the artist’s research has played an important role in the artist’s development of visual imagery, from the sketchbooks of daVinci, Turner, Picasso and Kahlo to the folders of Phillip Guston. This course examines the methods and materials artists employ to work through visual issues to reach meaningful and coherent aesthetic resolutions: students apply these strategies to their own creative work through in-class and assigned studio projects. Course Objectives: Course objectives are to introduce students to the sketchbooks and their equivalents of historic and contemporary artists so those students may study their methods of idea development and adapt some of these procedures for their own use. Students sketch observing and absorbing visual information, draw from memory, develop studies for a final work, address abstract and conceptual studies in both visual and written language. By exploring fundamental ideas in a work of art, examining sustained variables on one idea and using the visual language to explore concepts on a small scale without the responsibility of producing a finished work of art, students are given the opportunity to take greater risks and liberties and produce more in-depth investigations. Class Format:
Visiting artists presenting and discussing their sketchbook methods Slide lectures supported by books and other visual aids Students presenting and discussing their sketchbook methods In-class studio work on and off campus Individual and group critiques on assigned work Assigned reading Field trip(s) when an appropriate opportunity occurs Final Projects Criteria for Credit: Attendance for all classes, lectures, slide presentations and critiques; excused absences only; assigned work missed, must be made up. Participation in class Quality of work One major project resulting from sketchbook explorations. This may be done in conjunction with another class. All sketches and final project must be presented together in-class, during the fourteenth week of the course. Four, or more completed sketchbooks showing significant effort. One of these should be a “source-box”. In addition, a brief digital sketchbook should be presented in some form for classroom viewing. Sketchbooks required for credit: Traditional sketchbook – containing a visual language concerned with training the eye and the hand; observing and absorbing visual information; drawing from memory; developing studies for a final work – to be used for most of your in-class sketches and should be with you when we visit different locations and generally at all times. (Observational studies) Conceptual Sketchbook/Notebook – addressing ideas in both visual and written language beyond what is concrete and observed, possibly for exploring radical ideas pushed to the limit or, putting to formal use what were observational studies – to include a lot of writing so that ideas are clarified verbally and visually. (Abstract and conceptual studies) Final Project – a major work that emerges from the explorations in a sketchbook or, sketchbooks from this course or, might develop through the conceptual sketchbook evolving through writing as well as visual studies – This project may become finalized in conjunction with another course. Both studies and finished work must be presented together to the class before the end of the term. (Final project) “Source” Box – to collect materials that have some meaning or stimulate some artistic interest. This may include objects, notes, doodles, newspaper articles, postcards, photographs, sketches, measurements, marks, notes, scraps of drawings or paintings, or colors, collage materials, found objects, non-perishable, non-toxic garbage from the street, etc. This may be a collection of eclectic objects and notations for future reference or, it may be a collection specific to one idea. (sketchbox) Electronic Sketchbook – a brief exploration of the digital approach to a sketchbook to be investigated outside of class. (Digital sketchbook/notebook) Course Outline: Week One: Discussion of syllabus Discussion of content of the course Introductory slide lecture concerning various approaches to keeping sketchbooks, artist’s notebooks and journals using examples from books of historic and contemporary artists. Concentration: Repeating an image/concept in a variety of ways and considering the entire space, in the process. Week two and three: Concentration: Developing one ideaColor Week four and five: Concentration: Sustained variables on an idea as opposed to radical change Week six and seven: Concentration; Many uses of the photographed image Week eight and nine: Concentration: Continue all of the above Final Project are discussed and presented in-process Week ten and eleven: Concentration: Conceptual or abstract development of ideas. Electronic sketchbook Continue all of the above Week twelve and thirteen: Concentration: Concentrate on an aspect of Artist’s Notebook most important to you Final projects are presented in progress and discussed in groups Week thirteen and fourteen and fifteen: Presentation and critique of final projects Week Fifteen: In-class individual student reviews; these are mandatory for credit