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ART 2DG3 Contemp Appr To Drawing (C01)

Academic Year: Winter 2019

Term: Winter

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Prof. Judy Major-Girardin


Office: Togo Salmon Hall 430

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 27287


Office Hours: By Appointment (

Course Objectives:

Course Description

This course provides insight into the varied functions of drawing including expressive purpose, communication, information organization, idea synthesis and drawing as a form of thinking. A variety of media including graphite, charcoal, conté, wet media, collage, digital media, mixed media and hybrid approaches are included. Due to the nature of this course it is mandatory that students attend every class. Demonstrations, lab instruction and life modeling cannot be repeated.



By the end of the course students will have gained experience with the following:

  • Understanding of basic human anatomy
  • Familiarity with a wide range of drawing media and approaches
  • Understanding drawing as a way of thinking, researching, organizing and expressing information.
  • Increased confidence and efficiency in translating information into a visual form.

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

Studio Fee ($75.00)

4B and 8B graphite pencils


White Conte

Water-soluble graphite pencils



Black ink

Bamboo Brush

Selection of papers


Support Provided by Tuition


Teaching Assistants


Visiting Artists

Life Models

Program Administrators

Student Support Offices

Studios, exhibition space, equipment

Studio furniture, props and hand tools

Access to campus resources (Library, McMaster Museum of Art, Anatomy Lab, Greenhouse, natural areas)


Method of Assessment:



1. Chine Colle Window collaboration 10%


2. Figurative Portfolio

In-class drawings are worth 20% and include:

  • Gesture, Contour and Blind contour drawings from life model (charcoal)
  • Subtractive life model drawing (eraser drawing focused on value study)
  • Sustained pose life model drawing (graphite pencils)

This drawing is continued as home assignment to add a narrative context.

  • Figure in motion drawings (Mylar and ink working 2 sides of film)
  • Human Skeleton (focused on proportion/anatomy (water soluble graphite)
  • Anatomy Lab visit (coloured pencils) or alternative rubber anatomy parts


Figure-based independent drawings are worth 20% and include:

  • Comparing and recording similarities and relationships in your own body measurements (i.e. size of hand in relation to size of face) and plot them onto a ¼ scale outline drawing.
  • Develop your in-class sustained pose figure drawing by creating a narrative context for the figure outside of class time. Base your work on observation and composited research and focus on creating depth through compositional arrangement, value relationships, scale and perspective.


3. 3D Diorama Drawing (20%)

Using found and drawn images employ cut-out methods to create a 3D diorama in a box or tray. Focus on careful construction and use strategies such as tabs/slits, folds, double ply shapes, sewing, suspension, etc. to build secure components and activate the space. No glue guns may be used in the construction of this work. Examine packaging to explore ways of creating form that reduces the need for adhesives.


4. Integrated Media Drawing on Rigid Panel (10%)

Small-scale wood panel incorporating digital transfer techniques and a variety of media (i.e. inks, paint markers, gesso, graphite, etc.). Imagery may be representational, highly stylized, abstract or text-based.


5. Independent Drawing (10%)

This work is any media, any size, any support and any concept of your choice.


6. Participation/Engagement (10%)

Regular and prompt attendance and engagement throughout the term will ensure success in this category. In class activities include:

  • Artist Presentation to your peers on an assigned artist
  • Demonstrations
  • PowerPoint presentations
  • Critique Sessions



Midterm: Figurative Portfolio (in class drawings + home assignments) 40%+ Chine Colle collaborative window (10%) = 50%. This portfolio is due Feb. 26.

Final: Midterm 50% + 3D Diorama 20% + Integrated media/digital transfers on panel 10% + Independent Drawing (10%) + Participation/engagement 10% = 100%. Projects due on critique deadlines.

Students will have received at least 20% of the grade by March 15, 2019.


Achievement Levels



A+ = 90–100; A = 85–89; A- = 80–84

Work assessed at the A level consistently exceeds expectations and exhibits the following:

Conceptual rigour

Deep critical engagement

Complex, ambitious and prolific production

Meets deadlines with time for reflection before presentation

Advanced technical proficiency and risk taking

Comprehensively researched responses linked to focused goals, personal interests and artistic vision

Independent and self-directed approaches

Highly professional presentations

Engagement with all aspects of the course (requires promptness and stellar attendance)



B+ = 77–79; B = 73–76; B- = 70–72

Work assessed at the B level consistently meets expectations and exhibits the following:

Good grasp of concepts

Evidence of developing critical skills

Meets deadlines

Technically sound, demonstrating sensitivity to materials and their connection to ideas

Evolving research skills and good understanding of personal goals and interests

Some independence, self-motivation and risk-taking evident

Satisfactory presentation

Engaged with most aspects of the course



C+ = 67–69; C = 63–66; C- = 60–62

Work assessed at the C level fails to meet some expectations and exhibits some or all the following:

Inconsistent grasp of concepts

Little evidence of critical skills

Work is regularly late or presented in an undeveloped state

Struggling with technical skills, and conservative approach to exploration and risk

Requires regular assistance to understand assignments

Unsatisfactory presentation (unprepared, late)

Minimal engagement with course (poor attendance, few contributions evident)



D+ = 57–59; D = 53–56; D- = 50–52

Work assessed at the D level consistently falls short of expectations and exhibits some or all of the following:

Significant struggle with concepts and objectives

No evidence of critical skills

Missed deadlines

Simplistic technical approach with little sensitivity to materials

Arbitrary or no research evidence

Unacceptable presentation (inappropriate or wastes the time of the group)

Unsatisfactory engagement with course



F = 0–49

Work assessed at the F level fails to meet enough of the course requirements to obtain credit. Studio Art is a hands-on learning experience. Students who miss more than 3 classes or 25% of the course risk a failing grade due to the impact of this percentage on their ability to demonstrate abilities during in-class activities.


Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

Attendance and Late Assignments


Arriving on time and making efficient use of class time is crucial for your success in this course. Late assignments will automatically result in a letter drop in grade (A becomes B). Late assignments will be graded but not discussed outside of critique session deadlines. Assignments that are not received within 1 week of the due date will no longer be accepted and no projects may be submitted beyond the last day of classes.


The success of studio courses is dependent on the active engagement of all participants. Learning is accelerated in a hands-on environment where work and ideas can be discussed as they evolve, and challenges and successes can be shared. Important health and safety information and safe operating procedures are communicated during class time. You must receive this information to work independently in the studio, and you may not operate any equipment or use any process that you have not received safety training for.


Class discussions and critiques empower individuals to take risks in their art practice and learn from each other. It is of utmost importance that all students participate fully by attending all classes and remaining welcoming and open to all points of view.


The atmosphere of the studio should be characterized by courtesy and mutual respect. Participating in group critiques is an important part of providing constructive feedback for your peers. Active questioning and differences of opinion, respectfully expressed in a spirit of collaboration and mutual exchange, contribute to a positive and supportive group dynamic. It is your responsibility to contribute positively in this shared space and come to class prepared, on time and ready to contribute to the activities of the day.

Support Services

The University provides a variety of support services to help students manage their many demands. Reference librarians can provide invaluable research assistance. The Student Accessibility Services Centre (SAS) provides assistance with personal as well as academic matters. MUSC B107 and


Office Hours


Office hours are intended to provide additional assistance and you are welcome to visit often to discuss course projects or seek assistance on difficulties you may be experiencing. It is always better to deal with an issue while there is still time remaining in the term to seek solutions. Office hours are not a replacement class for those opting to miss class time without valid excuse. Office hours will not provide feedback sessions if you miss a critique deadline. It is important that you learn to manage your time. Of course, extenuating circumstances can sometimes occur and requests for accommodation should be discussed with the instructor a.s.a.p.



Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.

Topics and Readings:

Schedule of Activities




Due Date

Tues. January 8




Review of course outline, materials

distributed, PP, presentation artists assigned,

Chine Colle Window instalations

Group work to plan you chine colle window


In class participation


Due January 22

Tues. January 15



Human Skeletal Drawing

Complete window installation

Research for Artist Presentation




Tues. January 22



Model Session (close up subtractive drawing with charcoal and eraser)

Compare and record your own body measurements finding similarity in part sizes

Figurative Portfolio requirement

Due Feb 26

Tues. January 29


Model Session (gesture, contour, blind contour 2 drawing with charcoal)

Work on Independent Drawing

Figurative Portfolio requirement

Due April 9

Tues. February 5



Figure in Motion (2-sided Mylar drawing)

Sustained pose figure drawing

Continue sustained pose drawing to add a narrative context based on observed environment for the figure

Figurative Portfolio


Due Feb 26

Tues. February 12



Digital Transfer demo

Anatomy Lab visit (coloured pencil)

Complete sustained pose drawing to create a narrative context for your figure

Figurative Portfolio requirement

Due Feb 26

Tues. February 19


Winter Recess

Prepare figurative portfolio for submission


Tues. February 26






Submit Figurative Portfolio

Ensure name and date is on all items

Select one item from your portfolio for critique feedback

oral artist presentation

Gather found imagery for 3D diorama

Critique & work due

Midterm Assessment

Tues. March 5



Midterm grades returned

Visit to MMA (Jaime Angelopoulos)

Integrated media panel drawing work time

Complete integrated media drawing


Due April 2

Tues. March 12


Class time for 3D diorama drawing

Individual discussion of midterm (optional)

Work on 3D diorama drawing

In class participation


Tues. March 19


Class time for 3D diorama drawing

Individual discussion of midterm (optional)

Complete 3D diorama drawing

In class participation

Tues. March 26

Critique of 3D diorama drawings (20%)

Work on Independent drawing

Critique of 3D diorama

Tues. April 2



Critique of Integrated media panel (10%)

Critique of Independent drawing

Critique of integrated media & independent drawings

Tues. April 9


Final submit for independent drawing (10%)

In class participation


Other Course Information:



Working in the Studios

It is mandatory for all studio art students to have read the Studio Safety Art Manual for Students available on

The art studios are only for art students in the program or those enrolled in an art course. If you have a special project requiring involvement from someone outside the program you must seek permission from your instructor. Volunteer forms are on Avenue to Learn and require Director’s signature. There is no food or drink permitted in studio spaces. Exceptions to the food policy may occur in the flex studio, 114 or Atrium when art materials are not present. Steel toed shoes must be worn with the exception of 114, flex and atrium. If the policies are violated, loss of studio access will result as a consequence. Do not bring any chemicals or hazardous materials into the studios without the permission of your instructor. Do not decant any materials into food containers. All materials not in original containers must be labeled according to WHMIS regulations.



Appointments must be made with the Studio Technologist in regards to consulting and/or executing specific projects requiring the use of wood shop, metal, or ceramics facilities. Please ensure appointments and arrangements are made well in advance of deadlines and critiques.


Studios are accessible through access cards and are open from 7 am to 11 pm, seven days a week. Students are not permitted to work in the studios alone. Please arrange to work in the studio with a peer when working after hours.


Steel toe shoes are not required and eating/drinking are permitted in the following public studio spaces as long as art materials are not present:

Flex Studio 105


New Space 114


Non-art students are only permitted in 105, 114 and Atrium spaces unless accompanied by their class or with special permission of their instructor.



Incident Reports


If a student should have an accident in any of the studios, the incident (no matter how minor) must be reported to a faculty member, or the Studio Technologist within 24 hours. If no faculty or technician is available and immediate attention is needed, please call 88 for all emergencies. Do not hesitate to call 88 in any circumstance. Please do not make medical judgments for yourself or others. Let medical professionals make the necessary assessments.


Emergency Response

University line: ext. 88

905 522-4135; or 905 525-9140, ext. 24281


Student Walk Home Attendant Team (SWHAT)

Ext 27500

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Sunday: 7 pm – 1 am

Thursday, Friday, and Saturday: 7 pm – 2 am