visual arts

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Unit #1: Active Learning Project

This assignment meets Unit Learning Objectives: Media process video-drawing, media process video-painting

These are interactive exercises that bring difficult visual concepts to life. For each project there are specific questions that will relate to your chosen project, but you will also need to complete the following steps:

  • This project involves a physical art project that must be photographed and submitted 
  • You will write a 300 (minimum) word response (in MLA format) that examines how your project brings specific artistic elements/principles to life.
  • Connect what you have learned from your project with the material we studied and that you have seen elsewhere.
  • You must put the physical artwork and the writing in the same document.
  • A sample assignmentPreview the document is attached for your information.

Below are several choices available to you, you must complete one. 

  1. When two or more shapes are placed in a design, depth can be implied by changing the relative size of each shape, overlapping them, or placing them higher or lower in the space. Using black paper, cut out a series of simple geometric shapes: circles, squares, triangles, etc. There should be at least two of each shape, and some of different sizes. Arrange these shapes on a white piece of paper. Describe which shape is closest and which is furthest away. What makes the closest object seem closest? Furthest? Can you think of a way to make the objects all seem the same distance from the viewer? Re-arrange your shapes and see how the design changes. Be sure to include the images of different arrangements. How do the principles and fundamentals we studied in this unit (Media process video-drawing, media process video-painting) apply in your artwork?
  2. One important property of color is value. The hue blue can have many dark or light variations of color. Search and find pieces of colored paper from magazines, brochures, product packaging, construction paper, color printed images, etc. From this collection of colors, clip out only the sections that are blue. Take all your blue color clippings and glue as many of them as you can into a 6-in. × 6-in. square that you have made on a white sheet of paper. Feel free to modify their shape and size for more variety. Does your collection have both light blues and dark blues? Do some of the blues look slightly red and others a little green? Why do you think that you might be seeing reddish or greenish tones? Do you perceive a new color, different from the originals? What results do you think you would get with other color combinations? How do the principles and fundamentals we studied in this unit(Media process video-drawing, media process video-painting) apply in your artwork?
  3. If you have ever traced an image by placing a piece of paper over another image and following its shape, you have done a contour line drawing. You focused on a single point (the end of the pencil) and moved it over the shape beneath to transfer a skeleton of the other shape to your paper. But what if you wanted to transfer a person’s face to a paper? To do this you can use a piece of transparency film (transparent drawing surface) and a marker/pen. With one hand hold up the film so that you can see a person’s face through it. Then close one eye and focus on the tip of the marker/pen, tracing the features as it follows the basic outlines of that person’s face. Try to keep a long, continuous line. If necessary use a support, such as a piece of Plexiglas, so that the film does not bend and sway. Is the result a good likeness of the person? Can you think of other ways this process could be used? How do the principles and fundamentals we studied in this unit(Media process video-drawing, media process video-painting) apply in your artwork?
  4. Watercolor painting is popular because the materials are simple and cleaning up is easy, but it can be challenging because the artist must plan ahead. The key to making a good watercolor is to anticipate where the white areas will be, because once painted, the color cannot be removed. So leave the white paper as the highlights, and layer more in the darker areas. Using a simple, inexpensive watercolor kit and a piece of watercolor paper (a heavy textured paper), paint any piece of fruit or vegetable you happen to have around. Place it so that it is partially in light and partially in shadow. You should note a light highlight that will not be painted on your paper and the surface it is sitting on. Leave the light tones and paint the dark spots first, then overlap those areas and work into the medium-toned areas next, always leaving the white highlights alone. What do you notice when you paint over a section that was previously painted? What happens when you moisten the paper, then paint? How do the principles and fundamentals we studied in this unit( Media process video-drawing, media process video-painting)apply in your artwork?
  5. When an artist unifies a design, he or she places elements with similar characteristics into a visual relationship. The simple act of organizing your desk can create unity in the visual space of your desktop. Even making a list is a way of creating a visual unity that organizes information. Collect sixteen small objects of varying shape and color, each of which will fit in the palm of your hand. On a clean sheet of white paper, lay them out in a way that seems regulated and harmonious. Take a picture of the completed composition. What kind of system did you use? Are there patterns that you see now that you may have overlooked before? Try re-arranging the objects into a different pattern. Does that change your viewpoint? Be sure to include images of multiple compositions. How do the principles and fundamentals we studied in this unit(Media process video-drawing, media process video-painting) apply in your artwork?
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