Welcome Students!

Hello and welcome to my art class!

This blog was set up to help you successfully complete your sketchbook assignments. It contains: sketchbook lists, drawing tips, worksheets, classical drawings to copy and deadlines.

Every student in my class is required to complete a set of sketchbook assignments based on drawing from observation. Drawing from observation is sketching an image of what is exactly in front of you. It is drawing objects, people, places from life and not based on one's own imagination. It is really looking closely at something and learning how it is put together and how to interpret what you see onto a piece of paper.

Good drawing from observation is a skill everyone can learn. It requires practice and focus. Some of you have a "talent" for art and some of you may feel you are not so blessed with this gift. But in any case, it is possible for both kinds of artists to improve their drawing.

So work hard and be open to this challenge. I guarantee if you follow my directions and do all your assignments, your drawing from observation will improve quickly!

Happy drawing!

WHY is drawing from observation important?

Every brilliant artist, designer, inventor or scientist can sketch an image to communicate their concept. Even in business today, visually communicating an idea really can help sell an idea.

Drawing from observation will train you to be able to take what you see in front of you and translate it into a image others will understand. Drawing from observation shows that you understand how to interpret the world around you. It also will help you better illustrate what is in your imagination since you can use real world references to support your ideas.

If you are planning to attend a professional art or design college (to study art, game design, comics, animation, illustration, fashion, photography, architecture, product design or graphic design) you will be required to submit an "admission portfolio". A big part of this admission portfolio is drawing from observation. You will be required to submit high level original drawings from observation in a sketchbook and several large format drawings.

Friday, September 10, 2010


Every student will complete 50 drawings from observation by November 19th. This is so you will have a complete sketchbook to show on November 20th at National Portfolio Day. You will have 10 weeks to complete this assignment.

Do not procrastinate and wait for the last minute to complete the assignment. If you want a really excellent sketchbook that will help you get into your dream school or obtain a scholarship, you must work almost every day and put you best energy into it. Try to complete a drawing a day. If you do draw in your sketchbook everyday, your artwork will also improve and quickly and also you will have a fabulous sketchbook to show off.

See list below for suggested drawing ideas.

The drawing must be made on letter size paper (8.5 x 11) or larger.
The drawing will fill the entire page and touch 3 sides of the paper.
You may use any drawing material that you enjoy (marker, pen, pencil, color pencil)

View of your closet
Pile of 5 shoes
Pile of 4 or 5 baseball hats, all facing different angles
An open bag of athletic gear (show both gear and bag)
What's in the kitchen sink (draw the sink too)?
What's for breakfast (lunch) (dinner)?
An orange cut into 6 pieces on a plate
A toaster, loaf of bread + coffee machine (or coffee or tea pot)
A person sleeping on a _______
A person reading in a _______
A pet sleeping on a chair
A bird cage with bird
Sunglasses, keys and wallet
Your keys and _________
2 remote controls, one sitting on top of the other
4 chairs arranged in a circle
Three quarter view of two toy cars or trucks
Three quarter view of a toy chest with toys on top or spilling out
Two stuff animals and one doll
A hammer and a drill, one sitting on top of the other
A box of tools
A glass with 3 ice cubes and filled halfway with water
Three glasses with ice cubes, put one if front of the other
My backpack, MP3 player and headphones
A houseplant (close up)
Two or three houseplants in a window
My hand holding a fork
2 bare feet
My t-shirt hanging on the back of a chair next to a window
The view from my window
A detail of a window, fire escape and brick wall
A street corner
My corner store (bodega)
Fire hydrant and sidewalk
A street lamp and traffic light
Close up of a brick wall and window (or door)
Park bench and tree
The playground
The laundry room
An office or shop
Elevated subway station (big view or details)
A close up of a stroller
A bowl of Christmas ornaments
A crumpled piece of paper
A can of soda that is twisted and crumpled
The back of someone's head (show lots of hair detail)
A self portrait (full length)
A self portrait (neck and face)
Window curtains hanging in front of a window
The inside of a car
The view of the back of the car from the street/outdoors
A tooth brush in a glass and tube of toothpaste next to it
What's inside the medicine cabinet (kitchen cabinet)
People on the train, subway or bus
Draw a close up of a statue or object at a museum
Copy a painting or drawing from a museum
Copy a classical drawing (see Carol Sun Sketchbook Blog) - you may complete 5 per semester

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