Course Search 2022-2023

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Upper School Art and Design Curriculum

Mission Statement: Art and Design is a multi-disciplinary program, providing students the technology, resources and mind-set to creatively move from abstract to artifact.

Upper School Art and Design is a multi-disciplinary program. The discipline of design thinking comprises the core of the program, and the pedagogical focus stresses personal creativity, collaboration, team building, problem solving, storytelling and media authorship. Using either traditional media or computers as fundamental tools, moving from “abstract” through “artifact,” students are encouraged to adopt a “design” mentality and see hands-on project work as a unified, connected activity held together by some form of "narrative" or story-theme structure. Students are encouraged to develop and discover new skills, take pride in their creations and acquire a respect and appreciation for the work of their peers and other designers and artists.

Note: Starting with the class of 2024, Foundations: Digital and Studio are interchangeable as a prerequisite for advanced Studio art, Digital art and Makerspace classes. Artisan Tools and Techniques are not interchangeable.


Entry-Level Courses

Foundations: Studio

Instructor: Department Staff

Prerequisites: None

Open to students in the following grades: 9, 10

Full Year Course

Foundations: Studio is for ninth-graders and tenth-graders with a strong interest in pursuing studio arts.
 The class will develop students’ skills in visual problem-solving, perspective, the design thinking process, ideation and communicating through sketching. Students will learn how to apply the principles of art and design, including composition, balance, emphasis, value, line and color theory.


In addition, students will apply these skills in traditional-media projects. Skills covered will include paint mixing, shading with dry and wet media, and enlargement using grids.


For the Class of ’24 onward, this course is a prerequisite for the Studio Art sequence (Art 2-4 and AP Art Studio).

(Note: This course was formerly called Art 1)


Foundations: Digital

Instructor: Department Staff

Prerequisites: None

Open to students in the following grades: 9, 10

Full Year Course

Foundations: Digital is open to ninth-graders and tenth-graders interested in pursuing digital graphic design and maker-space courses. The class will develop students’ skills in visual problem-solving, perspective, the design thinking process, ideation and communicating through sketching. Students will learn how to apply the principles of art and design, including composition, balance, emphasis, value, line and color theory.


In addition, students will apply these skills in digital-media projects. Skills covered will include drawing on tablets, working with virtual layers, vector drawing, file management, and other components of digital literacy and media authoring.

For the Class of ’24 onward, this course is a prerequisite for the Advanced Digital courses (Graphic Design, Graphic Design Studio) and Maker-space courses (Design with Digital Fabrication, Architecture Design Studio).

(Note: This is a digital-based version of the class formerly called Art 1)

Artisan Tools and Techniques

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites:

Open to students in the following grades: 9, 10

Offered in the Fall and in the Spring

Artisan Tools and Techniques is an introductory art and design class, and the prerequisite for Glass, Metal and Jewelry Design. In this semester-long, project-based course, students will learn the elements of art, design principles, and basic technical skills for fabrication in glass and metals. Students will become familiar with studio procedures, as well as the foundational tools and materials associated with metalsmithing, glass cutting, grinding, and soldering. Artisan Tools and Techniques is offered in the fall and spring.

For the class of '26 forward, this course is a prerequisite for Glass Design, Metal Design, and Jewelry Design.

For the class of '24 and '25, Foundations: Studio or Foundations: Digital fulfill the prerequisite for those courses.

Ceramics

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 12

Prerequisites: None

Open to students in the following grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Offered in the Fall and in the Spring

This course explores both hand building techniques (pinch, coil and slab) and the potter's wheel. Students will learn about glazes and different methods of application and will have the opportunity to use various types of high-fire clay. They will be responsible for the loading and unloading of the kiln and will gain an understanding of how to do a firing. Scheduled time on the potter's wheel is built into the course for each student. This course is open to all Upper School students with creativity and imagination and who do not mind getting a little "messy"!

Digital Photography

Instructor: Laurie Hartman

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: None

Open to students in the following grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Offered in the Fall and in the Spring

This Introductory Digital Photography course is for any student with a strong interest in photography. The course will go beyond fundamental point-and-shoot techniques to provide a deeper understanding and open the realm of possibilities available in the digital medium. Topics and projects covered may include equipment use, aperture, shutter speed, composition, focal points, contrast and lighting as well as themes such as portraiture, nature and motion among others. A basic knowledge of digital cameras is helpful, but not necessary. In order to enroll in the course, students must provide their own digital cameras.

Digital Storytelling

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: None

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Offered in the Fall and in the Spring

This course will introduce students to digital video production and editing with a strong emphasis on organizational and communication skills. Students will learn basic video production techniques as a means of communicating a specific message to a specific audience. They will be encouraged to seek creative ways technology can help to accomplish this task, using it as a flexible tool, not an end in itself.

Film Photography

Instructor: Laurie Hartman

Enrollment limited to: 9

Prerequisites: None

Open to students in the following grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Spring Semester

All aspects of black and white film photography will be explored and students will be taught proper use and care of the 35mm film camera, safe use of the darkroom, rolling, developing and printing film, chemical mixing and usage and proper use and care of the enlargers and darkroom accessories. Three to four theme-based projects will be required as well as either a written final exam or oral practicum. Students should bring their own 35mm film cameras to class. All other materials will be supplied.

Hands-On Art History

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: None

Open to students in the following grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Spring Semester

This semester course will incorporate Visual Art, History, Reading, Writing and Studio Art.
 Students will explore a variety of selected art movements, themes and subjects throughout history, as well as create their own works of art. 
Students will use skills of visual analysis to investigate and critique master works of art using Elements of Art and Principles of Design.
 Key features of the course include learning and practicing techniques in a variety of two and three-dimensional media in response to each unit of study in order to produce a “hands on” project.
 Class trips to galleries and/or museums and visiting artist presentations will provide real-world examples.
 Assessments may include written and oral exams (art identification, multiple choice, compare and contrast, essay), studio art projects, group or individual presentations among other alternative assessments.

Printmaking

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: None

Open to students in the following grades: 9,10,11,12

Spring Semester

Printmaking is the reproduction of images through impressing a plate or block into a paper or textile. This course, open to students of all skill levels, will introduce students to the design process, materials and production methods associated with printmaking. Some basic sketching is necessary for planning projects, but drawing skill is not a major part of Printmaking. Rather, students should come with a willingness to repeat a print multiple times to improve results. Craftsmanship is stressed above all else. Projects may include linoleum printing (single block, multiple block, or reduction), silkscreen, monoprint, or non-toxic etching methods.

Intermediate Level

Art 2

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 14

Prerequisites: Foundations: Digital or Studio

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Full Year Course

Art 2 is for students who have successfully completed Art 1 and have a strong interest in progressing further with their art. Each student is expected to complete projects in various media including pen and ink, watercolor, scratchboard and acrylic among other mediums and materials. Emphasis is on the principles of design, illustration, pattern, creating abstraction from realism, perspective, composition and creative thinking. Good craftsmanship is stressed in all assignments and projects.

Art 3

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 14

Prerequisites: Art 2

Open to students in the following grades: 11, 12

Full Year Course

This course begins the formal process of portfolio development by introducing oils, pastels, and mixed media, while also continuing work in all media previously studied. Life drawing, painting techniques, and selected student projects are covered with no "copy" work. There is an emphasis on realizing and enhancing students' individual style and craftsmanship, and creative thinking and original work are rigorously stressed.

Digital Illustration

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: Foundations: Digital or Studio

Open to students in the following grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Offered in the Fall and in the Spring

Digital Arts explores digital drawing and art using Wacom drawing tablets, Adobe Photoshop, the iPad, and Procreate. Students are encouraged to seek creative ways of using technology to prepare projects and assignments. Elements of Design, Principles of Art, drawing techniques, color theory and a drawing tablet skill set are the main focuses of this class. The core software for this class are Adobe Photoshop and Procreate. The hardware used is Wacom Intuos tablets, Wacom Cintiqs, and iPads.

Ceramics 2

Prerequisites: Ceramics (Entry Level)

Open to students in the following grades: 9,10,11,12

Offered in the Fall and in the Spring

Ceramics 2 will invite students to dive more deeply into the cultural art of ceramics. Students will build on the skills that they learned in Ceramics to make, larger, more ambitious pieces. Projects may include African masks, Grecian Urns with a Sgraffito
design, Egyptian Canopic Jars with a flange and gallery, Hexagonal Vases, and a set of pieces inspired by a 2-dimensional artist.

Graphic Design

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: Foundations: Digital or Studio

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Fall Semester

Graphic Design explores problem-solving through the use of photography, illustrations, and digital tools. Students break down images into more basic concepts and thumbnails to better understand minimalism and the role it plays in logos and marketing for businesses in today’s age. Students explore color psychology and the importance of color palettes when used in a business setting. Elements of design and layout are explored in the pieces the students produce and they are given the opportunity to work on pieces at home and in school. This class uses the Apple Computers, Wacom drawing tablets, iPads, Adobe Photoshop and Procreate.

Graphic Design Studio

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: Foundations: Digital or Studio

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Spring Semester

Graphic Design Studio expands on skills learned in Graphic Design and Digital Illustration and encourages students to use the classroom more independently to work. Students learn an advanced level of understanding for Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator and Procreate. Students gain in-depth knowledge about marketing campaigns, printing, photo editing, and portfolio building. The core software for this class are Adobe Photoshop and Procreate. The hardware used is Wacom Intuos tablets, Wacom Cintiqs, and iPads.

Can be repeated for credit

2 Dimensional Design with Digital Fabrication

Instructor: Matt Martino

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: Foundations: Digital or Studio

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Fall Semester

How are the products that we use everyday designed and produced? How can we apply a design process to product design that can inform a final product that is balanced in form, function and aesthetics? In this class students will use drawing and model making, both digital and by hand, to prototype using professional digital fabrication equipment and techniques.

Fabrication Equipment: Laser cutter

Software: Adobe Illustrator / AutoCAD by Autodesk

Can be repeated for credit

3 Dimensional Design with Digital Fabrication

Instructor: Matt Martino

Prerequisites: Foundations: Digital or Studio

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Spring Semester

How are the products that we use everyday designed and produced? How can we apply a design process to product design that can inform a final product that is balanced in form, function and aesthetics? In this class students will use drawing and model making, both digital and by hand, to prototype using professional digital fabrication equipment and techniques.

Fabrication Equipment: 3d printer & 3-axis milling machine

Software: Fusion 360 by Autodesk & Cura by Ultimaker

Can be repeated for credit

Architectural Design Studio

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: Foundations: Digital or Studio

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Full Year Course

In this hands-on project based course hosted in the new maker space classroom, students will work in a studio environment on a number of design challenges as they apply to the Architectural design process. Students will work independently and collaboratively to produce a theoretical architectural installation represented by architectural drawing and model making. Throughout the course students will also look at various case studies of architecture, bridge design, structural engineering and sustainability to inform our own designs.

Intermediate Artisan Courses

Students interested in Intermediate Artisan Courses (glass work, metal work, and jewelry making) must complete "Artisan Tools and Techniques", or receive special permission from instructor.

Glass Design

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: Artisan Tools and Techniques
Students having already taken any Foundations prior to 2022 may waive the prerequisite.

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Fall Semester

An introductory course in which students learn how to design and fabricate two dimensional pieces using the medium of glass. Techniques covered are drawing for stained glass, cutting glass, grinding, foiling, and soldering. The focus of the course will be on the design process, as students consider the aesthetic, functional, and economic dimensions of both the piece and the design process itself. Students will be expected to present their design idea before fabrication begins and upon the completion of a piece.

Can be repeated for credit

Jewelry Design

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: Artisan Tools and Techniques
Students having already taken any Foundations prior to 2022 may waive the prerequisite.

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Offered in the Fall and in the Spring

In this introductory course, students learn to design and fabricate jewelry using base metals and sterling silver. Techniques covered include various cold connections, sawing, drilling, forging, and rudimentary torch work. The focus of the course will be on the design process, as students consider the aesthetic, functional, and economic aspects of both the jewelry piece and the design process itself. Students will be expected to present their design idea before fabrication begins and upon completion of the project.

Can be repeated for credit

Metal Design

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 10

Prerequisites: Artisan Tools and Techniques
Students having already taken any Foundations prior to 2022 may waive the prerequisite.

Open to students in the following grades: 10, 11, 12

Offered in the Fall and in the Spring

An introductory course in which students learn to design and fabricate various ornamental and functional objects using base metals and sterling silver. Techniques covered include various cold connections, sawing, drilling, forging and some rudimentary torch work. The focus of the course will be on the design process, as students consider the aesthetic, functional, and economic dimensions of both the object and the design process itself. Students will be expected to present their design idea before fabrication begins and upon the completion of the project.

Can be repeated for credit

Advanced Level

Students in Advanced Level art classes are expected to have completed courses at the Entry and Intermediate levels. Specific prerequisites vary from course to course.

Art 4

Instructor: Department Staff

Prerequisites: Art 3 plus teacher recommendation

Open to students in the following grades: 12

Full Year Course

Art 4 is for focused and serious students of the visual arts who can work independently and who may be looking at an art-related major in college. At the beginning of the year, a contract is made between teacher and student regarding the course of study for the year and can include projects in a wide variety of media, such as painting, sculpture, drawing, illustration, fabrics, ceramics, printmaking, etc. Portfolio development continues with an emphasis on creating high-quality, original work and meeting deadlines. At year's end, each student's full portfolio of work is displayed at the Upper School Art Show.

Advanced Placement Studio Art

Instructor: Department Staff

Prerequisites: Teacher recommendation

Open to students in the following grades: 12

Full Year Course

This course is intended for highly motivated students committed to the serious study of art. The end result is a two-part portfolio of 17-20 pieces submitted to Educational Testing Service for an AP grade. There are three choices for portfolio development (Drawing Portfolio, Two- Dimensional Design Portfolio or Three-Dimensional Portfolio) and each of these is divided into two equally weighted sections: Selected Works (Quality), and Sustained Investigation (Concentration). Written statements are also required for each Section of the final portfolio. It is strongly recommended that students applying for this course consider attending a summer visual arts program before entering their Senior year. Please note that this is considered a core academic course.

Human Scale: An Advanced Integrated Design Studio

Instructor: Department Staff

Enrollment limited to: 12

Prerequisites: Foundations AND 2 semesters of an Art & Design electives
2 years of Art and Design courses

Open to students in the following grades: 11,12

Full Year Course

This advanced design studio lies at the intersection of Design, Art, Science and Engineering. Students will bring their varied creative experience and work in both hands and digitally in a collaborative studio environment. They will spend a full year working on a series of large-scale team-based projects that incorporate all of their prerequisite skills and experience. This may include elements of Art, Architecture, Engineering, Graphic Design, Glass & Metal Work and Digital Fabrication as they relate to or interact with the human user/viewer. Students will build the program and design process themselves. Their inspiration will come from the world around us, possibly elements of nature or science. Projects may be located indoors or outdoors. They may take the form of art installations or built structures like pavilions, sculpture, mechanical devices or even furniture. At the core of all of these options and respective disciplines is the common thread of human experience and interaction.


At the start of this class, students will focus on working as a team and honing their processes in the construction of a cardboard furniture system. They will study design concepts and investigate materials and techniques. The second quarter will open all of the tools of the Makerspace. It will focus on refining individual skills and how they may be incorporated into the student project team. In the second semester students will begin working on a full-scale installation to be built on campus. Each project will conclude with presentations of work to a panel of design critics where students will receive feedback on their progress. Students will be expected to spend class time actively working to advance their projects and at times be required to spend additional time in the studio to reach project milestones. At the conclusion of each semester students will be required to submit documentation of their work as it may appear in a design portfolio.