Syllabus ARTC 4430
Instructor: Bonnie Mitchell
Office: 109 Fine Arts Building
Office Hours: By appointment only
Section: 1001 (42519)
Semester: Summer 2015
Lab: 244 Wolfe Center
Time: M-F 9:00am - 2:30pm
ARTC 2210 Digital Imaging or permission of instructor
Students will learn about how to apply art and design principles to create visually appealing characters. Focus will be on character archetypes, body language, facial features, poses, model sheets, and creative character development.
Students will improve their drawing and design skills by learning how to focus on details and depict weight, create the illusion of 3d on a 2d surface, use economy of line, express emotion, and use shading and texturing techniques. Students will also learn about contemporary and historical issues related to character design by engaging in various research and creative activities. In this class the students will create a series of drawings and model sheets to include in their art portfolio.
The course is taught in the computer lab but most of the work will be created using pencil and paper. The medium and style of drawing is flexible and is based on specific assignments. Class lectures will include demonstrations, discussions, videos, technical exploration, aesthetic inquiry, and historical information relevant to character design. During this class, students will spend time researching and presenting that research as well as developing character designs.
The course will be taught in an active learning format. Students will be presented with information and then will do visual and text-based research. The information presented will include drawings, videos, films, storybooks, animations, and historical information. The studio time will focus on improving drawing and observation skills, experimenting with styles of drawing and creatively juxtaposing elements to create unique designs. The course will include periodic critiques and reviews where peer evaluations as well as feedback from the instructor is provided.
Possible topics for this class are listed here:
Sketchbook, Drawing Pad, Drawing Board and clip, Pencils HB or #2 (2B or 3B are good for shading), , Pencil shapener, Paper stump, Erasors (kneaded rubber erasor is best), Optional: Prismacolor colored pencils, blue draftsman pencil or other preferred style, markers, pastels, or other media to design your characters. You will need a portfolio case to protect your drawings.
You need money to print three 11x17 images. These do not need to be archival prints.
Firewire External Drive (formatted for both Mac and PC) or Flash Drive highly recommended. You will be expected to back up your data if you save your files to the lab computers.
Field Trip Costs:
We will go to the zoo during the class. Plan on $20 admission and food and parking costs.
It is essential that you have a digital camera. The camera on your phone will work fine or you can use a more sophisticated camera to record the realistic characters you are drawing so you can go back and refine them once you are in the studio.
- "Creating Characters with Personality: For Film, TV, Animation, Video Games, and Graphic Novels" by Tom Bancroft
- "Cartooning: The Ultimate Character Design Book" by Christopher Hart
- "The Art of Animal Character Design" by David Colman
- "Atlas of Human Anatomy" by Frank Netter
- "Atlas of Animals Anatomy" by Frank Netter
- Any of Preston Blair’s character drawing books.
- There are a LOT more books available related to the specific type of characters you are interested in drawing.
Each student is expected to complete all projects, exercises, in-class exercises, research projects, and the final project. Details of the various assignments will be discussed in class. By the end of the course, all projects should become part of the art portfolio blog.
During class time, students are expected to engage in meaningful classroom participation.
Attendance is mandatory. We will be covering a variety of materials throughout the semester. If you miss a class, it is your responsibility meet with a classmate or make an appointment with me to get the information.
- 1 absences = no penalty
- 2 absences = overall final grade lowered 1 letter grade
- 3 absences = overall final grade lowered 2 letter grade
- 4 absences = fail the course; dropping the course strongly recommended
Being 15 minutes or more late to class three times will count as one unexcused absence.
Leaving class early (15 minutes or more) three times will count as an absense.
Assignments and Critiques
Turning in Projects
Projects are due in the Homework folder prior to the beginning of class.
Because this is a fast paced, three week course, I do not accept late projects and you will receive a zero on the project if it is NOT turned in on time. We will have three blog updates (Mon. May 25, Mon. June 1 & Fri. June 5) and projects will be graded then.
You must be prepared for critiques. Projects not ready for presentation at a critique will be marked down a grade level when turned in.
During critiques, I expect each student's full attention and respect. Monitors will be TURNED OFF.
Attendance at the Final critique is mandatory. Missing the final critique will result in an F for the Final Project. NO late Final Projects will be accepted!
Grades / Evaluation
Excellent - Above and beyond, artistically AND technically
Very Good - Beyond requirements, artistically OR technically
Average - Met the basic requirements. Quality OK but could be improved.
Did not meet requirements.
Project not turned in or completely insufficient
Digital Arts Department Rules
- No food or drink in the lab.
- No cell phones, or beepers on during class. ALWAYS remember to turn off (or silence) your cellphone before class.
- No sleeping during class.
- No student is permitted to disconnect, reconnect, or reconfigure any workstation without the permission of a digital arts
- Any problems with hardware or software must be reported to a digital arts professor, preferably by email. Report should include Barcode number of the workstation and the exact details of the problem.
Projects created in any Digital Arts course may be used by the ART department for the purpose of promoting the student, the department and/or the university in general. These materials may also be used by the ART department for instructional purposes in future courses. Please inform the instructor if you do not want your projects used.
Any student who wishes to discuss accommodations on the basis of a disability, please come talk to me after class or during office hours. The goal of the Disability Services for Students Office is to help provide equal access and reasonable accommodations to BGSU students with disabilities. Students wishing to discuss their eligibility for such accommodations are encouraged to contact their office at 372-8495 (413 South Hall).