Student Work from Intro Art Courses

Digital Foundations:

Digital Foundations is required of all art majors and focuses on the application of design principles through the use of digital tools such as Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign and Premiere Pro. Below is a selection of student work from the fall 2015 course. Digital Foundations was taught by Adjunct Professor Angela Sieler.


Intro to Photography:

Students were asked for their final project to create a photo series based on a subject of their choosing. The Intro to Photography course is taught by Adjunct Professor Laura Marsh.

"The Emotions of Eyes" by Ryan Dukes

I find eyes very intriguing. I love drawing eyes all the time and its the first thing that I notice when I look at someone. This piece was inspired by my appreciation for the human eye. Each photo captures an emotion on the female subject. I did not tell them how to look when the photos were taken, I just simply asked if I could take a picture of their eyes. The emotions from the photos were what I read from each person and how they presented their self at the time being. According to the particular emotion that I read from them, determined how I edited the photo to give it a more dramatic affect. 

Final Project by Tabitha Ferguson

When I first started to think about the projectI had a lot of different ideas in my head. But one idea that seemed to make the most sense for this project for me was to tie it into beauty. The reason for this is that I am always changing my style and I know that there are a lot of others thatdo too. So I decided to take five different pictures on how people change their looks for beauty. So I first started to think about myself and how I have changed mylooks. Like shaving part of my hair, make up, and tattoos. So I used myself for those three pictures. Then for the other two, I was thinking what else do people change. Then I was like, people dye their hair and get piercings! So I found two of my friends and took their pictures. I also was thinking that I wanted them to all be close up photos, so that the viewer can see the texture and it would give them a different story then if they were taken further apart. I really like how they came together and look like they belong together, even though they are different photos.

ART105: Foundations I: Core Concepts

ART105 focuses on helping students to become more purposeful, creative, and articulate. Students learn creative strategies and research skills that help them to find original solutions to visual problems. They also develop the vocabulary and presentation skills needed to document, describe, and share their artwork with others. Below is a selection of final projects. Students were asked to reinterpreted a historical painting by changing both its meaning and formal attributes to match a new theme of their choice. The course is taught by professors Tim Van Beke and Peter Barr.

Amber Koprin  --  Edward Hopper, Nighthawks, 1942, oil on canvas, 33-1/8 x 60 inches (The Art Institute of Chicago)

For my final project I selected Nighthawks, by Edward Hopper. It is a very famous painting from 1942. The theme I chose to work with is transformation and along with that I chose depressing. The colors do not alone represent depression but the meaning of the content on the outside of the bar verse the inside is where it is depicted. The change from mostly gray scale (outside) to rich colors (inside) is my connection to my stylistic adjective. 

To give a brief explanation of my piece as a whole I will start by stating that I portrayed transformation by separating my image into two different worlds if you will. The outside and the inside are separated from each other by color, content, and then window of the bar. The outside is created of found objects and collaged images that are related to my childhood and my main focuses in life as I was growing up. The inside of the bar is mostly drawn and painted with a few found objects. The inside of the bar is of content that surrounds my life today and my main focuses that are most consuming of my time in my life.

The three creative strategies I selected were collaged thematic images, manipulating found objects, and color scheme. I also added in used a photograph of myself that is relatable to my theme. First, I used collaged images in my piece in the third window as well as the book that was placed to represent the door to the building in the back with windows. The book and third window are where the objects of my childhood are placed. The book represents that peoples past are held in our minds but best looked back on by documenting our experiences by journaling. Writing in journals and pasting little pieces of papers, receipt, tickets, quotes etc. is something I religiously do and felt it was a great choice to use as the door. We enter doors to see the inside as we open books to see the content. The window has wire over it that represents jail bars; my memories are locked up in my past and I find this very dawning. This is where my strong relation to depression is connected to.

Found objects are used both in inside and outside. I explained them on the outside in the paragraph above. As for the inside, I used found objects in place of the original characters heads and for the poster on the wall next to the door. There are three people that has visible faces in the original and I replaced them with objects that consume my life today, almost completely in fact. I spend all of my time painting (artwork), putting in time to track and field (the turf represent this), and then lastly the bartenders head is representational of film. I cut the side off of a reel of sewing string and glued the edges of film strip and a ticket to it. Films are easily one of my favorite hobbies and am heavily captivated by the film industry. 

The colors I chose are colors that reflect me as a person. This is easily stated as if you had to look at a person as just a color(s) those would be the ones I would be displayed as. My favorite color used to be blue which is used but my favorite color has transformed into green. My biological mother, guardian Mary, and Darwood all loved the color green. Not sure if that is the reason I was drawn to this color over time but I see it as one of my parents’ characteristics that rubbed off on me. So the man that is not facing the front view is represented as myself, therefore being dominantly green and also yellow which is extremely fitted with this color visually (which is visible in the clothes I wear a lot of the time). The black on my back is representational of the past creeping of on me and my life now is transforming into memories. Along with this, I put a lot of yellow in the front of my face that symbolizes my present life and experiences are filled of life and “the now”. Also in relation to color, I drew my eyes in the frame on the wall. Half of it is in color and half in gray scale that is symbolic of my transformation of my life the living in the moment of each day and then the other part is lacking color and becoming a memory.

My time in my life today is reflected from my past. My interest in art and horror films is easily passed on from my biological parents (both pasted in the collage section in the back). The colors as well which was mentioned earlier. Another connection of the outside to the inside is the water the sits behind the silhouette image of myself, the water is gray and flows into a colored section of water that is rushing up and hitting the wall of the bar. Water lack controls and is very consuming. Further, water is hard to hold, mold, and manipulate to a specific way (our experiences, things we face). A body of water can be very consuming and so if the fact of life that nothing stays the way we may wish for.

The original piece I kept from the artwork was the people’s upper bodies but I changed the colors of each of them. The elements of design I used are color and is obvious in the lack of color on the outside verse the large amount used on the inside. I used shape because I wanted to replace the building with different objects, ex. the knife.  There is balance in this piece, outside and inside. It is split by the window to give a sense of past and present.

Brandon page -- Francisco Goya's The Third of May

In Art 105 I have learned about creativity, usefulness and color theory. In each of my projects I have used different methods of creating useful, non-cliché pieces. We also have discussed art themes and created our pieces around our theme of choice. In my collage I used the themes, power, protest, and humor. My final project uses humor as its theme, and excited as its adjective. For my creative strategies I used silhouettes relating to the theme, expressive use of line, and coded communication.

The painting I based my piece on was Francisco Goya’s, The Third of May, 1808 in Madrid, 1808. It was a little ironic that my theme was humor, as Goya’s painting is depicting a mass shooting of people against a hill. A big part of my life was watching cartoons. I watched all different styles and developed my taste in humor. Watching new episodes of Spongebob with my sister was on the couch was extremely humorous. Viewing so many cartoons is what made me want to be and animator/illustrator. I replaced the row of guns men with my couch and two people watching the television. These two people represent my sister and me. The television contains silhouettes of Patrick, Mickey Mouse, and Bugs Bunny.

I created my silhouettes from hand drawing them onto paper, and then tracing them onto construction paper. I then used an exacto knife to cut out the images and collage them to the television. Behind them is a piece of construction paper that I colored with primary colors to symbolize wild and crazy antics that are in cartoons. It may seem weird putting Patrick Star, Bugs Bunny and Mickey Mouse on the same screen, but I did so to represent the cartoons I love, and find the most humorous. I used silhouettes to signify these characters, because if I just drew their faces it would be cliché.

Expressive line is another key element to my piece. Excited lines appear to shoot out of the television and into the minds of the people on the couch. Those individuals also have lines coming from their mouths to indicate they are laughing at the humor on screen. The adjective, “Excited” was used because when I was little I was always excited to watch new episodes of a show. I used primary colors for my expressive lines because simple cartoons typically use very bright and high saturated primary colors in their design.

In the sky you can see stars. These stars are my coded communication strategy. I used braille to spell the phrase, “Humor is Happiness”. This was the part of the piece that I changed frequently. At first I had the stars in a straight, small line that only took up a little space on the sky. I changed this by expanding the distance between each star. To create depth, I changed the size of each dot, and also changed the color from white to grey to draw attention away from the sky. The one element I kept from Francisco Goya, The Third of May, was I kept the style and color scheme of his painting. The colors do not represent humor at all, but it is what makes my painting unique and not cliché. I mixed green, yellow, and burnt umber to recreate Goya’s gloomy design, and also leaving shadows that were in the original. I also wanted to keep his sloppy style with the brush. I accomplished this by not making perfectly straight lines, and making my brush strokes clearly visible.

To conclude, I really enjoyed this project. I had fun with it, and I believe it is one of my most unique pieces. It is not cliché, and it is completely original. I was happy I could imply that the piece takes place at night, with the use of my dark color scheme. If I could change any thing, it would be to add more people standing behind the couch, as an homage to the original (which contains more people). Learning these creative strategies will really help me in the long run, because they help generate creative masterpieces that I will hopefully make in the future. To me, humor is about simply sitting on the couch, watching cartoons.

Emily Cueto -- Édouard Manet, Olympia

For my reinterpretation of a historic painting I decided immediately that I wanted to use “romance” and “ecstatic” for my theme and adjective that would expressed through my artwork. I chose these two words once I found out the work had to relate to us personally, and one of my favorite things to do is talk about my relationship. The painting I chose to reinterpret is Édouard Manet, Olympia, which I chose solely because it had a pair of ladies posed in a vaguely romantic stance. My chosen personal experience for this project was the first time I had ever met my girlfriend in person, so a painting of two women was more than enough for me to work with.

I chose to use three different color schemes in my work, the first being various tints and shades of pink and purple for the romance aspect,  yellow and orange for ecstatic, and grayscale for the main subjects of the piece. I have my main form, Jasmine, lying on top of the fabric layered together to create a couch and pillows. I wanted to make the couch warm and loving because those were vibes I felt coming off of her the moment she walked out of the bus station. The orange and yellow that seem to be bursting off of me are an accurate representation of what my mind was experiencing in this moment. There was a blissful, surreal feeling of joy and shock that just seemed to hit me all at once and I felt this was best expressed with bright, warm colors. As for the two figures I went with grayscale because I wanted to show that we were both people in the same situation, thinking and feeling the same things, and yet handling them in two completely different manners.

When we saw each other Jasmine kept it pretty cool; she smiled broadly and kept mostly quiet. This made her stand out more than anything else around me; I’d never seen anyone or anything more clearly than I saw her in that moment, which is why she is so realistically cut out of paper. I on the other hand had immediately broken into a cold sweat, thrown up in my mouth, and started shaking uncontrollably. I couldn’t form a comprehensive thought and stuttered out every word I tried so desperately to get out. I wanted to show my state of disarray and ecstasy through the use of expressive line to create a vague silhouette of myself. Lastly, I placed some subtle braille code throughout the fabric of the couch that can be translated into some of the thoughts that were buzzing around my head, such as; “Wowie!” and “This is actually happening!”  

KaCee Costello -- John Singer Sargent, The Daughters of Edward Darley Boit

The theme that I chose was fantasy because I absolutely love fantasy novels and movies. It wasn't hard for me to think of a memory to go along with this theme as Ihave read a lot of fantasy books in my life. For my memory I decided to choose the time I locked myself in the room for a week to read the Percy Jackson series. This lead me to decide to turn the people in the original picture to mythological creatures that could be found in the books. These two creatures are a water nymph and a satyr. 

My adjective was grim because the original picture was already pretty creepy so it inspired me to make it even more dark and creepy to be grim. Also I thought that the adjective grim could fit very well with fantasy because some fantasy books are very dark and creepy to the point that I would consider them grim.

The first strategy that I chose to use was college. I decided to make the pond that the nymph is in a college of pictures of water. After I was done with it I decided it was too bright to be considered grim so I watered down some black paint and painted over top of it to help it fit in and I'm really happy with how it turned out.

The next strategy I chose to use was color scheme and that was very easy to pick. I chose cool colors keeping everything close to my theme and adjective. To me cool colors go very well with the adjective grim because a cold person with a dark outlook on life is considered to be a very grim person.

My third strategy was expressive line, this one is hard to see in the final picture but if you look closely you can see the lines in the trees and a little bit in the grass which I used to help add texture and depth as well as express my adjective grim. The lines are all very short which to me resembles a life being cut short by a tragic event or something of the sort which is very grim.

I decided to keep the little girl who I thought was creepiest which happened to be the one standing off to the left but since I already had planned a new character to go there she had to be moved. There was another problem with this little girl though, she was wearing a red dress which didn't fit with my color scheme. So I put her into Photoshop on my laptop and used what knowledge i have to recolor her dress and scale her to the exact size I would need for my larger version of the painting.

The elements I used were line, texture, and color while the principals I used were emphasis and movement. I used texture to give both the trees and grass more detail and I used line within this texture to express my adjective. I used color to further express my theme. I used emphasis to draw your eye to the water nymph in the front of the picture because the eyes of the other two characters pull your gaze away from her so I tried to create a sort of balance, this also caused the movement in my picture as your eyes move between the three points.

John Bucher -- Gustave Caillebotte, "Paris Street; Rainy Day"

This project reinterpreted Gustav Cailbotte's Paris Street; Rainy Day, as pictured above, while retaining the umbrellas. The Art 21 theme used was "secrets", and the three creative strategies used were: coded communication, silhouettes of shapes, and expressive line. Overall, the painting has to do with lies, in this particular case, cheating. This piece, through working with it, has quickly become an emotional attachment to me. A lot of myself, specifically that of past relationships, is poured into this piece, but not explicitly. I wanted to make it as abstract and indirect as possible (while at the same time being aesthetically appealing) but just direct enough where someone can sort of get the idea as to what the figures were, humans/individuals and maybe a trace of its symbolism. 

The coded communication, which is done in morse electric telegram messaging, reads "Lie" and is seen on the sides of the building in the distance as well as in red paint on the yellow figures, and also on the rectangular shape between them. 

The silhouettes are of people, or other bodies. These represent association with the figure with the red dot for a head. In fact, the warm colors in this piece are of association with this figure. Notice the targets all over the figure's body and those colors' distribution throughout the painting. 

Expressive line wasn't used primarily throughout the piece, but it's there. (I didn't fully read the criteria before I started the painting, so it was sort of implemented late into the process which is a fault on my part). The intentional expressive lines are the wavy ones, which represent uneasiness/disorientation. This again is symbolic, and all ties into to a specific idea within secrets. 

I enjoyed this piece overall. Even though I made errors early in the work, It turned out to be one of my favorite pieces ever for me on a personal level, as a lot of my emotion was translated into this piece while still retaining the original paintings proportions and general placement. 



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