In-Class Work

Final Landscape Painting

Technical Skills: 3
The painting was passed in on time. The craftsmanship of the painting was mostly good, but the paint in the sky is rather dry and there are places where there is no paint on the matte. There is very little detail in the trees in the front of the painting. There was more detail in the mountains and sky, but there still could have been more.

Creative Problem-Solving Skills: 3.5
The composition of my painting is very similar to Ansel Adam’s photograph. There are more than eight mixed colors, but there should be more color variation in the trees in the foreground of the painting. The teal in the famous painting doesn’t match the blue, purple, and green colors that I put in my painting. I didn’t match the painting style either because I wasn’t sure what the style of the famous painting was.

Final Still Life Drawing


1. Look at the famous artist’s work that we discussed in class (the laminated sheets). Compare your marks to the marks created by Henry Moore, Vincent van Gogh and Giorgio Morandi. Which of the three artists’ marks, are the most similar to yours? Explain why and exactly where you used these marks:
I would say that Vincent Van Gogh’s marks are the most similar to mine. I say this because Giorgio’s drawings consist of a lot of lines and crosshatching and I barely ever crosshatch. Then, Henry Moore’s Vultures are all lines and I like to try to smooth values out in my drawings instead of drawing suggesting lines. Even though I really like Moore’s hand drawing, that isn’t how I draw, with the scribbled background and shadows. Van Gogh’s drawings are more smooth and realistic which is what I try to achieve.

2. Look at your work (all in the portfolio) and progress over time. What drawing(s) make you the most proud? Please explain:
I am most proud of my hand contour and my final still life. I think that the hand is for the most part, very realistic and I showed a lot of contour lines. I haven’t used much white charcoal before, and I like how it adds to a drawing. I also think I did well on finding values in the shapes and drawing them on my paper.

3. What are three important things you have learned? Please explain why they are important.
I have learned more techniques, more about using white charcoal, and I have learned to see more value and different shades, shadows, and highlights in objects. Before this class, I never crosshatched and I am learning how it can add to drawings and add texture and different values. White charcoal also adds a lot because it adds more values and makes the drawing pop more because you can draw a great range of values. Being able to see more shadows and highlights is important because these little values make the drawing more realistic.

Color Vocabulary

Hue-Hues are colors or shades.

Primary Colors-These are the basic colors: red, yellow, and blue
ericsonprimary.pngGate of an Adobe Church, Georgia O'Keefe (1929)

Secondary Colors-Green, orange, and purple. These colors are created by mixing two primary colors. Purple is made by mixing the two primary colors blue and red.
ericsonsecondary.pngThe Railway at Bois-Colombes, Paul Signac (1886)

Tertiary Colors-Red orange, red violet, blue violet, blue green, yellow green, yellow orange. These colors are made by mixing primary and secondary colors. Red orange is created by combining red, a primary color, with orange, a secondary color.
ericsontertiary.pngThe Papal Palace, Avignon, Paul Signac (1900)

Analogous Colors-Analogous colors are color schemes that are composed of colors that are right next to each other on the color wheel; for instance, red, red orange, and orange are analogous colors.
ericsonanologous.pngMarlboro Woods, Wolf Kahn (1999)

Monochromatic Colors-These are all the shades of one hue. To get monochromatic colors, start with a base and add black or white to create more shades. Think of blue violet paint, for instance. Imagine adding white paint to it and you can see how it gradually gets lighter. Now go back to your base color and start adding black. Notice how it gets darker. Each of these shades of the blue violet are part of its monochromatic colors.
ericsonmonochromatic.pngAutumn Light, Mark Wethli (1995)

Complementary Colors-Complementary colors are colors that are opposite to each other on the color wheel. These are colors that look good together and have a high contrast. For instance, blue and orange are complementary colors and their contrast is exciting. The ever popular red and green, the Christmas colors, are also complementary colors.
ericsoncomplementary.pngIn Newfane VT, Wolf Kahn (2004)

High Intensity-When a hue is high intensity, it is pure and hasn’t be dulled by other colors and shades. It is bright. An example is the primary color yellow.
ericsonhighintensity.pngPiazza d'Italia, Giorgio Chirico (1913)

Low Intensity-This is a dulled hue which has been mixed with it’s complementary color to make it duller. If I mix some purple paint into my yellow paint, the paint color will have a lower intensity.
ericsonlowintensity.pngLe bateau atelier (The Boat Studio), Claude Monet (1876)

Warm Colors-Warm colors are exciting, energetic, and vivid. These include orange, yellow, and red.
ericsonwarmcolors.pngThe Floating Ice, Claude Monet (1880)

Cool Colors-Cool colors are calm and soothing. Some examples are blue and purple.
ericsoncoolcolors.pngPortrait of Nick Wilder, David Hockney (1966)

Value Portrait Collage with Reflection

1. Technical Skills: 3
I think I did some things well and others not so well. There are a lot of gaps between the pieces of paper throughout the collage. Also, the values aren’t that great, partially because part way through the project, some of my values disappeared out of my folder. But I used small pieces of paper which help make the collage more realistic. The way that pieces of paper are placed on the collage also adds to the look of the face, like drawing lines in with the flow of the contours of a face does. I think I did well in most parts of the collage on arranging the pieces correctly.
2. Creative Problem-solving Skills: 3
There wasn’t really much unique about my collage other than the fact that it was of my face. It was rather average. One thing though, was that, like I was saying before, I tried to make my paper move with my face. On the right side of the collage, the values are better because I used a better variety of shades.
3. Why might the exercise of breaking down a photograph into value shapes help when you are drawing?
Breaking down a picture into value shapes really helps when you are drawing because then you see what the image actually looks like. When you look at a picture, you automatically assume things which makes you pay less attention to detail and to get proportions wrong. By breaking the photograph down, you see shapes and can copy those shapes. When together, like they are in the photograph and will be in your drawing, it looks much more realistic.

Negative Space with Reflection

1. Technical Skills Justification: 3.5
For Technical Skills, I think I did pretty well-the shapes are clearly identifiable. The shape and placement of the plant is balanced and well done. But the spirals get lopsided and the spaces between the lines change. Also, there are places where I messed up the line, so there are double lines.
2. Creative Problem-Solving Skills Justification: 4
I believe I came up with a unique and original design for the background. The curves of the spirals work well with the many curves of the plant. Also, I used two spirals instead of one to show the outline of the plant better. Lastly, the placement of the spirals was critical-the centers are exposed so that you can see where the lines are coming from, but the two are also placed so that they aren’t too similar in positioning.
3. Why do artists make thumbnail sketches before starting a formal drawing? In what ways did it affect your work?
Doing thumbnail sketches gives the artist an idea of what they’ll be drawing and gives them an overview of their choices so they can choose they best design. When I drew my thumbnail sketches, it let me get to know the plants better so I could draw them more accurately in the future. Also, I could see that even though some of my designs were very interesting and had a good composition, there was vast difference between the amount of positive and negative space. Because of the thumbnail sketches I made, I chose to draw the one I did because I could see by looking at the four sketches next to each other that that one was the most balanced and interesting.
4. Why does it matter what pattern you choose for your background? How do different patterns affect the "look" of this project?
With some backgrounds, there isn’t a distinct barrier between the positive and negative space. Also, different patterns make the background look lighter or darker. Another difference that different patterns can have is that they give the drawing a different feeling. This could be tension, rhythm or something else.

Leaf Designs

EricsonLeaf3.jpgFree Choice
1. Technical Skills Justification:
On Technical Skills, I think I did a good job cutting out the leaves and various other shapes. But the gluing isn’t very good because it is visible in many places on both black and white paper. Some of the placing isn’t very good either; such as on my free choice, some of the tips of the leaves are off. On the tension, the white space is overpowering the black because I didn’t use enough black paper.
2. Creative Problem-Solving Skills Justification:
For Creative Problem-Solving, I think I did well. My rhythm piece is showing the rhythm of repetitive leaves flowing in water and I didn’t see any pieces on the bulletin board with quite that view. For my free choice, the design is kind of average, but the twisted square puts a different take on it. My symmetrical design is also fairly average, but my intricate leaf is different from others which differentiates it from others. On my tension design, the pattern could have been more creative, but I didn’t bring it to that level. I left it with too much white space and without something really tying the piece together.
3. Which of the four designs do you feel is the most successful in terms of using positive and negative space well? Please explain.
I believe my free-choice piece used the best balance of positive and negative space. Neither is overpowering the other and the placement of the pieces gives it that feeling of balance too. The design isn’t scattered or cluttered and the positive and negative space is even and centered.
4. Which one of the four designs do you feel best communicates the assigned Principle of Art? Please explain.
Compared to the others, tension and rhythm, my symmetry piece represents the principle the best. It is clearly symmetrical and there are multiple places where it mirrors the image. My tension design, as I discussed earlier, wasn’t made very well and there wasn’t enough black paper used so the piece doesn’t express tension well. The rhythm design is rhythmic, but when looked upon, ‘rhythm’ doesn’t immediately come to mind like ‘symmetry’ does when my symmetry design is looked at.

Sketchbook Assignments

Painted Color Wheel


Color Collage


Still Life 2


Still Life 1






Household Tool