Monthly Archives: November 2013

Photo 1 – Emmet Gowen – Due 11/25



In your comments, answer the following questions:

How does Gowen capture the character of individuals in his family and the nature of the family as a whole?

What is your favorite photo and why?

Why does Gowen shift from focusing on his family to other themes?

What themes do his later photographs address?

In conclusion, what ideas of Gowen’s do you find most interesting?


Art 1 – Due Nov 25 – Chuck Close “breaking it down into pieces”


In his career as a painter, Chuck Close has used the grid method as a formal structure in his work. In his early years as a photo-realist, Close hid the grid with paint. In his later work, the grid becomes an essential part of his paintings.

1. Choose one of Close’s paintings (you’ll find a gallery at  Comment on the significance of his technique using the grid system.

2. In his words, Close says he “builds experiences for the viewer.” What is your personal response to his work?

In your sketchbook, do a 1 hour drawing of something of your choice. Begin with a grid that will remain in your design. Color is optional.

Art 3 – Abstract figure painting – Due 11/18


Visit the site of local artist Claire Thorson and look at her images of figures, first the drawings then the paintings.  Note how abstract and stylized her paintings are.

Next, do an internet search for images of “diebenkorn figure drawings” and “diebenkorn figure paintings”

Read the following articles on Richard Diebenkorn and notice especially how the figurative work corresponds to his more abstract work. In your comments, offer 3 points that you find especially interesting and relevant to your figurative work and the upcoming figure painting.

NOW, look at some of the influences on Diebenkorn that were mentioned and other figurative artists you admire and post a link.

Art 2 – Romare Bearden Due 11/18


Watch this video on Bearden’s Jazz works and pay special note to the rare clip of him in his studio.

Watch the clip on Bearden from Robert Hughes “Empire of Signs”  (after Rauschenberg, around 2:15 until 6:00)

Comment  thoughtfully on ideas concerning:

a: the development of his art,

b: the uniqueness of his style in the 60’s and 70’s,

c: his manner of linking personal themes from African American culture with art historical precedents or broader humanistic themes, and

d: anything else you may want to add to the discussion about Bearden.

Art 1 – Color in nature Due 11/18


Color schemes inspired by nature

Look at the video of the chameleon, the cuttle fish, and the site below it about color combinations in nature.

In your comments this week, consider:

Can color also be emotional in effect?  What kinds of emotions can it convey?

What will you try to convey with your color choices (besides light and dark) in the distortion grid?

If you could borrow any ideas from nature, which would you choose for your  distorted face project?  Explain why.

Also, share a link to a site which has interesting color effects.

In your sketchbook, collect 3-5  small examples of interesting color combinations from nature (tape in the sample or a magazine swatch, illustrating it.)

Do a 1 hour drawing of anything which uses the color combinations from one of your samples. You may do any style of drawing but it should be in color. Mark your time on the back of the page.

Art 1 – sketch due 11/11/13


Read the following article and study the accompanying image. Using the continuous line drawing method practiced in class, fill a sketchbook page with imagery inspired by Picasso’s Guernica.  Quickly and expressively draw your lines and shapes. You may draw from observation, but also invent some of your own designs. Then, spend one hour building up a range of tonal values with shading techniques. No blog comment required this week.


Art 3 – Clothed Figure – Due 11/6


1. Look at the following description of Degas’ life and work:


2. Look at the visual sequence  of recreating a Degas drawing using pastel and abstracted shapes:


3. Here is a video segment on polishing a drawing of a clothed figure using a kneaded eraser and shapes to accent the form:

4. Comment on the three aspects of Degas’ work and life that interest you most and then search the collections from link below for seated clothed figure.  Find the clothed figure that interests you most and post a link to it and explain why you find it interesting and how you might use some of the style or techniques in your own work.

Google Art Project