Contact a Humanities Office or Academic unit.
Find your course outlines.

ART 1UI3 Making Art&Understanding Imag

Academic Year: Fall 2015

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: E

Instructor: Prof. Sally McKay


Office: Togo Salmon Hall 417

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 23675

Office Hours: Wednesdays 11:00-12:00 am, TSH 417

Course Objectives:

Utilizing sketch books, collage and creative research, students will gain widely applicable skills in manipulating and analyzing the communicative power of images. This course offers students from all programs the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with art making and materials while engaging in critical analysis of art and visual culture. Students will gain skills in creative self-expression, effective mark-making, composition and form. Hands-on projects will be linked to assigned readings, class discussions and lectures. Students will gain widely applicable skills in both manipulating and analyzing the communicative power of images. No previous artistic experience is required.

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:


A required Custom Course Pack will be available at Titles Bookstore. Additional required readings can be found online, as noted in the schedule below.



Please go to Currys art supply store at 610 King St. West in Hamilton to pick up the materials listed below. Curry’s has ordered them in for this course and they will give you a discounted price. Materials will be available in the store by September 1st. Please bring your valid Student ID and ask for the McMaster kit supplies. Please allow yourself plenty of time and be patient, as the store gets very busy at this time of year. 

Canson Universal Sketch Pad 11" x 14" (100 sheets) [product # C702193]

Canson XL Mixed Media Pad 9" x 12" (60 sheets) [product # C702242]

Marsgraphic Kneadable Eraser [product # S525G20]

Alvin Gum Eraser 2" x 1" x 3/4" [product # AL1223AE]

Metal Pencil Sharpener Two-hole [product # BS2]

Lumograph Pencil HB [product # S100HB]

Lumograph Pencil 2B [product # S1002B]

Lumograph Pencil 4B [product # S1004B]

Lumograph Pencil 6B [product # S1006B]

Conté Crayon - Black HB [product # CC2460HB]

Conté Crayon - White HB [product # CC2456HB

UHU Glue Stick Economy 8g [product # U26]

Students are required to bring all of the above supplies to every class.


Additional supplies will be required for some classes (these can be previously used):

            set of coloured pencils


            paperback book that you can modify/destroy, something small and easy to carry

Method of Assessment:

In-Class Assignments  (Due Weekly)   10%


Daily Drawing   (Due. Nov. 26)  10%


Drawing in the Museum  (Due Oct. 1)  15%

(Detailed guidelines will be provided in class and posted on Avenue to Learn.)


Self Portrait/Still Life  (Due Nov. 5 ) 20%

(Detailed guidelines will be provided in class and posted on Avenue to Learn.)


Drawing Across Disciplines (Due Nov. 19)  20%

(Detailed guidelines will be provided in class and posted on Avenue to Learn.)


Exam  (scheduled during Exam Period)    25%   

(Detailed study guide will be posted on Avenue to Learn.)


Grading Scale:

A+   90-100    B+   77-79       C+   67-69       D+   57-59

A     85-89       B     73-76       C     63-66       D     53-56

A-    80-84      B-    70-72       C-    60-62       D -  50-52       F     0-49

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:

Sept. 10 - Intro: Drawing Defeats the Mind-Body Split


• David Rosand, Drawing Acts, (excerpts), 1-3 and 13-17. (Course Pack)

• Scott McLoud, Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art, 24-41. (Course Pack)

• Lynda Barry, Picture This, 53-65 (Course Pack)


Sept. 17- Intro: Culture, Context, Contingency


• Marita Sturken and Lisa Cartwright, “Images, Power, and Politics,” Practices of Looking, 9-48. (Course Pack)

• Glossary of Key Terms and Concepts (Avenue to Learn)


Sept. 24 - Vision as an Active Process  

Readings :

• Semir Zeki, “The Neurology of Ambiguity,” 243 -246 and 250-270. (Course Pack)


Oct. 1  - Visual Codes & Knowledge Forms

*Drawing in the Museum project due in class


• Hans Belting, “Perspective: Arab Mathematics and Renaissance Western Art,” European Review, vol. 16, no. 2 (May 2008): 183–190. (Mills Library online database: Scholar’s Portal )

• Elizabeth Stephens, “Inventing the Bodily Interior: Écorché Figures in Early Modern Anatomy and von Hagens’ Body Worlds,” Social Semiotics, vol. 17, no. 3 (September 2007): 313-326. (Mills Library online database: Scholar’s Portal )


Oct. 8 - Realism & Representation


• Terry Barrett, “Realism,” 19-28. (Course Pack)

• Orhan Pamouk, My Name is Red (excerpts), 68-73, 75-81 and 62-65. (Course Pack)


Oct. 15 – NO CLASS… Mid-term Recess


Oct. 22 - Representation & Self-Representation


• Marcia Crosby, “Construction of the Imaginary Indian,” 266-291. (Course Pack)

• tekanji, “FAQ: What is the Male Gaze?” Finally Feminism 101 blog, (Online:

• tekanji, “Obscuring the Male Gaze” Official blog (Online:


Oct. 29 - My Kid Could Make That!


•  Artist Senga Nengudi on Vasily Kandinsky's Impression III (Concert)(1911), Museum of Modern Art, New York

(Online Audio:

•  Artist Frank Stella on Kazimir Malevich's Suprematist Composition: White on White (1918), Museum of Modern Art, New York

(Online Audio:

• Museum of Modern Art, Invention Abstraction (intro text) (Online:

• G. Roger Denson, "Colonizing Abstraction: Moma Show Denies It's Ancient Global Origins" Huffington Post, 02/15/2013 (Online:


Nov. 5 - Stop Making Sense 1

*Still Life/Self-Portrait project due in class


• Herschel B. Chipp, ed., “Dada, Surrealism and Scuola Matafisca: The Irrational and the Dream,” Theories of Modern Art, pp. 366-396  (Course Pack)

• Priscilla Frank, “7 Forgotten Women Surrealists Who Deserve To Be Remembered,” The Huffington Post (2015) (Online:


Nov. 12 – Stop Making Sense 2


• Paul-Émile Borduas, “Refus Global Manifesto” (1948),  The Canadian Encyclopedia,  


• Sol Lewitt, “Sentences on Conceptual Art (1968),” Ubu web (Online:


Nov. 19 – Getting Outside the Box

* Drawing Across Disciplines Project due in class


• Soo Jin Kim, “Interview with Mierle Laderman Ukeles,” Parallax, vol. 3, no. 2 (1997): 215-221. (Mills Library online database: Scholar’s Portal)

• Lucy R. Lippard, “Sweeping Exchanges: The Contribution of Feminism to the Art of the 1970s,” Art Journal, Vol. 40, No. 1/2 (1980): 362-365. (Mills Library online database: Scholar’s Portal)


Nov. 26 - Topic To be Announced

* Daily Drawing Project due in class


Readings to be announced in class and on Avenue to Learn


Dec. 3  - Review

Other Course Information:

Policy on Email Communication:  The instructor may take up to 48 hours to read and/or respond to student emails.


Avenue to Learn: In this course we will be using Avenue to Learn.  Students should be aware that, when they access the electronic components of this course, private information such as first and last names, user names for the McMaster e-mail accounts, and program affiliation may become apparent to all other students in the same course.  The available information is dependent on the technology used.  Continuation in this course will be deemed consent to this disclosure.  If you have any questions or concerns about such disclosure please discuss this with the course instructor


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

Academic and writing skills support is offered by the Student Success Centre located in Gilmour Hall, room 110. For more information on the Student Success Centre please call (905) 525-9140 [ext. 24254], email or visit