Thursday, October 15, 2009

Drawing Workshop at the KU AAD...


I teach a class in Contemporary Art at the Art & Design Department of Kuwait University. Earlier in the week we conducted a drawing workshop with the students. (who are all in their final year of Graphic Design). Strangely enough they've never done anything like this before. The workshop consisted of seven points, which lasted ten minutes each.

The seven drawing points were:

1.
To draw a picture (a portrait of Dorothy Parker) from memory. The students were allowed to observe the photo for one minute, and draw their mnemonic impression for nine minutes...

Two mnemonic interpretations of Dorothy Parker...

2.
To do a 10 second, 30 second, 2 minute and 5 minute drawing of a landscape...

Intense concentration during the 10 second drawing...

3.
Copy an image from Gray's Anatomy (the book, not TV series) using colouring-pencils and another medium of their choice (pastels, crayons, thick markers, water-colours, collage, etc.)...

Two renditions of the same drawing, represented through two different mediums...

4.
Draw their impression/ rendition of a monotonous surface, in this case a framed section of a window-shade...

The students were asked to draw the inside of the, A4 size, taped area...

5.
Attempt to copy an image (a geometrical painting by Malevitch) with their 'wrong' hand, i.e. a right handed person had to use their left hand to do the drawing, and vice-versa...

Drawing with their 'wrong' hand...

6.
Interpret what they felt (through haptic means) into an image. The students inspected (felt up, without peeking!) an object in a bag which they could not see, and drew what they felt...

A student inspecting, interpreting and translating what they're touching into a drawing...

Some of the resulting interpretations of the haptically inspected object...

One of the actual surfaces the students inspected...

7.
Copy an upside-down line drawing. The students drew, as is, an upside-down line portrait (a portrait of the composed Stravinsky by Picasso)...

An example of an upside-down drawing...

12 comments:

bumo said...

Very interesting drawing points. We had some similar exercise in photography class.

The latest issue of T-Square Magazine is out. We still havent distributed it around the coffee shops yet but it will be soon. The pdf copy will be uploaded to the T-square Magazine website soon.

Summer said...

Cool, very nice!

Thomas said...

Thanks for your comments Bumo and Summer...

I actually already have a copy of the latest T-Square, thanks to Dr. Dashti at the KU Architectural Department...

A great start for the year...

sarah said...

staying at home with bad flu and fever, with the kids, we tried some of your exercise: Real FUN and interresting...

Thomas said...

That's great Sarah..! Hopefully the results were worthwhile...

Fun, fun fun for all ages..!

sarah said...

the results were not as appealing as the students' works.
But "copying with the other hand" experiment was closer to reality than expected. The "touch in a bag" gave them a sense using a new medium.
They asked for more...
thank you for sharing your techniques and your knowledge.

Thomas said...

Anytime Sarah...

I'll try to enter some later blog entries of the project we're currently dealing with, which has to do with censorship in Kuwait, a subject matter all of the Graphic Design students I'm teaching will inevitably have to deal with in the not too distant future...
The drawing project, which aimed to introduce the notion that everything we do is inherently subjective (a rendition of 'lateral thinking'), performed as a preamble to this, a bit more substantial and research based, assignment...

But more on that later...

sarah said...

So true: the inherent subjectivity. In every choice we make, words, images, gestures, connections, we are far from objectivity and free of influence.
But that what makes us the individuals we are or want to be.
I'll be waiting for the rest of the assignment. (Now I would like to see how far you're planning to take your students.)

Anonymous said...

Hi ! i have already graduated from University as a Civil Engineer but am very interested in Architecture and thinking of completing my Masters in Architecture.

Meanwhile, is there a way i could take the Drawing/design workshop without enrolling the in university?

Please say yes !!

Thomas said...

Hi Anonymous,

I'm not sure if the class can be attended by anyone not currently enrolled, but perhaps as a former student (if you studied at KU) it might be possible.

I'm not sure though that I'll be teaching the class next term though (and even if I did, I might do something completely different)... There are some drawing classes taught at AUK by Alia Farid, which I know have a enthusiastic following, although, again, I believe this current class might also be her last she'll be teaching in Kuwait in a while... But I'm sure there are other worthwhile places and courses you could attend...

Anonymous said...

Hi Dr. Thomas,
Can you maybe name me or recommend fun, creative design classes or courses i could take?

Thank you :)

Thomas said...

Hi again Anonymous,

I'm sure there are a number of worthy classes around, they seem, though, to change regularly, so the best idea is simply to keep an eye out for any classes that might interest you and just ask around - check KU, AUK, Sadu House, etc. for courses...

Good luck...