I am very pleased to announce that the new drawing HE4 course, Exploring Drawing Media, is now available for students at level one . The course is part of a fantastic drawing degree pathway being developed by programme leader Doug Burton and his team. Having written for HE5 and 6 (levels two and three) I was so pleased to be able to write this course for the Open College of the Arts.
I’ve had a chance to think about and experiment with writing for distance learning students over the years. Some of the developments I have implemented as a result of reflection of the process of course writing include generating a sense of peer community through using students as examples, and to using clear and varied learning materials to aid access; particularly for students for whom acres of text is unhelpful. I’ve also been a tutor of level one drawing students for a very long time now, and so I was brimming with ideas for how I could write a course to support students to discover drawing for themselves.
The premise of the course is really the relationship you have with your materials; how far you can develop sensitivity to their own properties and how you harness that understanding to your developing abilities in looking, thinking and moving.
The course covers working with fluid media, collage, and in three dimensions as well as the more traditional materials you might expect. There is always scope though in each assignment to ‘make it your own’. One of the aims of the course in fact was to support students at level one to engage more critically with their work, so from the off you are given responsibility for key aspects of it. Many of the exercises are formulated as questions or choices for example and much of the contextual study requires you to form opinions and make connections with your own work.
There’s plenty of space here to make work that is personally interesting and rewarding for you, no matter what your reasons for studying and making art. The course is ambitious for students, and it is clear from the off that you are studying at degree level, but the ambition is couched in a highly supportive course structure – you will amaze yourself!!
I believe that Exploring Drawing Media will prove to be an inspiring and rewarding course for students embarking on or continuing degree level study with the college and, as Unit Leader, I look forward to welcoming some of you to it in the months ahead.
Image Credit: OCA student Sally Pennington.