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Re: artsednet digest: February 18, 2002 - plagerism

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Sonoftiel_at_TeacherArtExchange
Date: Tue Feb 19 2002 - 03:27:00 PST


About Copying and plagerism -Hello to you all from Maryland -
    I have been teaching for about 22 years, many of those years with
students that have learning disabilities, are good in art but suffer from
terrible lack-of-confidence issues. Initially I was a "don't ever copy"
purist - "only draw from life", until I realized that that even the old
masters we so revere copied from other images in order to teach themselves
drawing information they couldn't get from life. Also, it takes a certain
stage of development/comprehension for children and other students to
understand the difference between drawing from 2-D versus 3-D. 3-D is
definitely harder for most peole when they first begin to draw. What I now
do with my students is this: I go back and forth between both; life-drawing
and works done from references and I emphasize to the students that they are
learning information from copying, and I do teach them that they may not pass
off this work as their own; that they either have to sign it "After. . . . .
" (whoever the artist is) or that they alter it enough,- Intepretation - that
it becomes their own. I am now teaching a unit on wildlife for a wildlife
show sponsored by the National Wildlife Center - I simply cannot import
flamingos, herons, bobcats, etc. for the students to study. I do not think
this is a copout, as long as you use can use life drawing as much as possible
and continue to help students discern the differences between copying,
plagerism, referencing, etc.
    The trick I think, is not to copy too much, because this does keep the
student from exercising their own imagination and creativity. Finally, I am
an excellent representational artist myself, and my first models available to
me were my cat (real life) and the super heroes from comic books. They both
helped me when I was finally able to get to draw from real models - both
human and inhabitants from the
National zoo. I prefer life models when I can get them - but the animals are
harder to convince to stand still! . . . . . . .Hope this helps. . . . Pam
 

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