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[teacherartexchange] Regarding Teaching to Observe

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From: Kevan Nitzberg (knitzber_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sat Sep 13 2008 - 06:06:34 PDT


One strategy to getting students draw from what they are seeing as opposed
to what they think a subject looks like, is to have them make view finders
(approximately 1.5" x 2"), through which they have to look at the specific
subject (or part of subject), being drawn. This narrows their field of
vision to a specific area that helps to have them focus on that area.
I have used this strategy with having my students on the following
assignments:
- draw / paint still life compositions
- negative / positive space compositions
- gridded self portraits that are drawn on a 4:1 scale where they actually
make 2 view finders, one is 1" square and the other is 4" square for use in
transferring the shape / value information from the 4" x 5" digitized
photograph I have taken of them and applied a 1" grid to their portraits
which they then have to transfer to the larger 4" square boxes that make up
the 16" x 20" drawing
- contrasting / composite pattern compositions that involve their looking at
2 contrasting photographs and selecting portions of each to be placed into a
broken up plane (geometric or organically designed), so that the 2 images
are scrambled in the final composition.

You can see examples of some of these works on my school web site:
http://www.anoka.k12.mn.us/ahsnitzberg Go to the Drawing I class sections
under the different years noted on the menu bar on the left hand side of the
web page.

Kevan

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