Art & Design


Art & Design Key Stage 3

What can students do to develop their skills in this subject area?

  • Drawing challenges. A list will be issued to all Year 7 and Year 8 students that they can work through. Students are challenged to complete 2-3 per term – for example: draw a flower, animal, something mechanical, your bedroom, your bike, etc. These tasks become progressively more challenging as students move towards the end of Year 8.
  • 'Noughts and Crosses' – nine ideas for students to create something following Bloom's Taxonomy. Students ensure each challenge is signed off by their Art teacher. For example: write about an artist; create a fact file about an artist or movement; undertake a survey of friends about the subject; read and make a report about a painting or artist; create an image in the style of an artist of your choice; recreate an artwork in a different material; draw one image in 4 different materials; design a new logo for your form; create a pattern using found materials and photograph it.
  • Complete a set of challenges that reflect the assessment objectives: 4 cultural tasks, 4 creativity tasks, 4 competency tasks and 4 critical tasks. This can include Christmas card design, etc.

What wider reading can be completed to support the curriculum?

  • Encyclopaedia of Drawing Techniques - Hazel Harrison.
  • The Complete Book of Drawing - Barrington Barber.
  • The Drawing Project: An Exploration of the Language of Drawing - Mick Maslen and Jack Southern.

What websites could students visit to support the curriculum?

The website below provides a list of galleries and what they have on offer including exciting resources and opportunities for young artists:

www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/art-and-design/art-and-design-community

You or your son or daughter could download the free Art Fund app which gives you all the latest exhibitions near to you.

How can parents/carers help and what can be done at home?

  • There are often extension activities as part of your son's or daughter's set homework projects, or ambitious ways of approaching the projects. Ask your son or daughter to share how they intend to challenge themselves!
  • If your child is attending an extra-curricular club, they will be given fun challenges in a lunch-time session or after-Academy club every week, ranging from drawing to sculpture to photography.
  • A number of students in Art are also keen on producing their own ideas at home too. Activities to suggest or support could include:
    • Drawing from life – this is an extremely important (and sometimes the most frustrating!) skill to develop. Try observing objects or environments, accurately capturing the shape, textures and light involved.
    • Encourage your son or daughter to sometimes work for a sustained period and to compare quick, expressive sketches with more careful observations.
    • Transcribing work – copying a section or all of an artwork in a similar media allows your son or daughter to understand the processes the artist went through to achieve a certain style.
    • Collage or drawing in response to an event or a news story will help your son or daughter to create visual stimulus with meaning.
    • Building and sculpting shapes – this can be done with anything, and for anything, from blu-tac to craft straws; inventing new forms and structures in 3D is an important part of development.

Questions to ask about what your son or daughter is working on:

  • What made you decide to draw/make this?
  • How is this different to your other work?
  • What would happen if you used different materials for this?
  • Is there an artist who works like this? Are you working in a particular style?

  • Galleries: Gallery visits are extremely valuable for young artists and photographers, allowing them to engage with artwork in 'real life' and often providing a range of free activities, course and workshops for younger artists.
  • Useful Materials: A space in which to works sketchbooks with cartridge paper make a huge difference; drawing pencils in a range of grades – 2B-8B, pastels and paint. All supplies are available in different price ranges and quality.
  • GCSE: Students could also take responsibility for extending their skills via additional workshops and making pro-active use of example A* coursework available via teachers.
  • Activities: entering competitions – there are many competitions open to students run by Saatchi Gallery, The Tate, local and national Rotary clubs to name but a few, and your son or daughter should be considering entering some. Their teacher will be able to support and guide entries.

Art & Design Key Stage 4

What can students do to develop their skills in this subject area?

  • Deeper reading and reports about artists that have been researched in lessons, providing personal opinion and prompting further discussion.
  • Collecting broadsheet newspaper research on contemporary artists, recording details in the form of a scrap book.
  • Creating an art work that reflects the world's current events.
  • Creating an art work that reflects a mood.
  • Running a Years 7 and 8 Art Club with the help of a teacher; to plan and design a short term Scheme of Work to be delivered here.
  • As part of analytical drawing, focus on measuring and proportional drawing – either a subject suggested by staff or own subject matter.
  • Design and create a visual story using unusual features – for example: emojis, a comic strip, willow pattern.
  • Create a YouTube style video to demonstrate a skill or product; create a time-lapse video of a drawing/painting to show the process.

What wider reading can be completed to support the curriculum?

  • Encyclopaedia of Drawing Techniques - Hazel Harrison.
  • The Complete Book of Drawing - Barrington Barber.
  • The Drawing Project: An Exploration of the Language of Drawing - Mick Maslen and Jack Southern.

What websites could students visit to support the curriculum?

The website below provides a list of galleries and what they have on offer including exciting resources and opportunities for young artists:

www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/art-and-design/art-and-design-community

You or your son or daughter could download the free Art Fund app which gives you all the latest exhibitions near to you.

How can parents/carers help and what can be done at home?

  • There are often extension activities as part of your son's or daughter's set homework projects, or ambitious ways of approaching the projects. Ask your son or daughter to share how they intend to challenge themselves!
  • If your child is attending an extra-curricular club, they will be given fun challenges in a lunch-time session or after-Academy club every week, ranging from drawing to sculpture to photography.
  • A number of students in Art are also keen on producing their own ideas at home too. Activities to suggest or support could include:
    • Drawing from life – this is an extremely important (and sometimes the most frustrating!) skill to develop. Try observing objects or environments, accurately capturing the shape, textures and light involved.
    • Encourage your son or daughter to sometimes work for a sustained period and to compare quick, expressive sketches with more careful observations.
    • Transcribing work – copying a section or all of an artwork in a similar media allows your son or daughter to understand the processes the artist went through to achieve a certain style.
    • Collage or drawing in response to an event or a news story will help your son or daughter to create visual stimulus with meaning.
    • Building and sculpting shapes – this can be done with anything, and for anything, from blu-tac to craft straws; inventing new forms and structures in 3D is an important part of development.

Questions to ask about what your son or daughter is working on:

  • What made you decide to draw/make this?
  • How is this different to your other work?
  • What would happen if you used different materials for this?
  • Is there an artist who works like this? Are you working in a particular style?

  • Galleries: Gallery visits are extremely valuable for young artists and photographers, allowing them to engage with artwork in 'real life' and often providing a range of free activities, course and workshops for younger artists.
  • Useful Materials: A space in which to works sketchbooks with cartridge paper make a huge difference; drawing pencils in a range of grades – 2B-8B, pastels and paint. All supplies are available in different price ranges and quality.
  • GCSE: Students could also take responsibility for extending their skills via additional workshops and making pro-active use of example A* coursework available via teachers.
  • Activities: entering competitions – there are many competitions open to students run by Saatchi Gallery, The Tate, local and national Rotary clubs to name but a few, and your son or daughter should be considering entering some. Their teacher will be able to support and guide entries.

Art & Design Key Stage 5

What can students do to develop their skills in this subject area?

  • Write down all the key art vocabulary they can think of and define the terms.
  • Try to describe a piece of art using as many different art words as they can think of. Challenge a friend to get a higher score.
  • Pick out 5 key aspects of an artist's style and list ways in which they could use them in their own practice.
  • Pretend that someone is blind and explain a piece of art in as much detail as possible.
  • Look at the work of an artist and try to figure out how they created their work and the process they went through. Write out the steps.
  • Drawing from life. Try observing objects or environments, accurately capturing the shape, textures and light involved.
  • Work for a sustained period and to compare quick, expressive sketches with more careful observations.
  • Try marking your own work using the mark scheme provided.
  • Create a mind-map of ideas to link to your artists and observations. Consider adding to this every class as ideas develop.
  • Conduct a media experiment trying out a new process. Analyse results and consider how to improve upon the results.
  • Visit a gallery. Write a review of one of the pieces seen. Include opinions as well as explanations for them.
  • Try out an unconventional material or media or process– did it work, how could it be used – for example: drawing with a stick; painting with a tree branch; painting with fingers; closing eyes.
  • Write an artist statement to explain their own work, inspiration and thought processes.
  • Create the flyer, poster or promotional material for the end of year show.
  • Enter an art competition and get experience working to a design brief.
  • Create a website to display/sell their own artwork.
  • Look up past examination papers online. Create a mind-map of ideas that relate to that topic. How could these be addressed?
  • The student can make a list of their strengths and weaknesses in Art; what needs to be developed and what makes them stand out.

What websites could students visit to support the curriculum?

www.topmarks.co.uk - provides links to resources, sites, and artist information.
www.studentartguide.com - provides links to useful websites and exemplars of students' work.
www.nationalgallery.org.uk

How can parents/carers help and what can be done at home?

  • Encourage your son or daughter to discuss how they intend to challenge themselves in their project work this year.
  • Support lower school lunch-time sessions or after-Academy clubs as part of enrichment.
  • Encourage your son or daughter to produce their own ideas at home too. Activities to suggest or support could include:
    • Drawing from life – this is an extremely important skill to develop. Try observing objects or environments, accurately capturing the shape, textures and light involved.
    • Work for a sustained period and to compare quick, expressive sketches with more careful observations.
    • Collage or drawing in response to an event or a news story will help your son or daughter to create visual stimulus with meaning.
  • Gallery visits are extremely valuable for young artists and photographers, allowing them to engage with artwork in 'real life'.
  • Your son or daughter could also take responsibility for extending their skills via additional workshops and making pro-active use of example A* coursework available via teachers.
  • Activities: entering competitions – there are many competitions open to post-16 students run by Saatchi Gallery, The Tate, local and national Rotary clubs to name but a few, and your son or daughter should be considering entering some. Their teacher will be able to support and guide entries.

Photography Key Stage 4

What can students do to develop their skills in this subject area?

  • Composition: practise taking photographs of a range of subjects exploring different composition rules: Leading Lines, Rule of Thirds and Golden Mean.
  • Viewpoint: take portraits of friends, family from different viewpoints: looking down on them, looking up at them, eye level. How does this change the mood of the portrait? Does the person appear more or less powerful?
  • Light: explore different lighting and understand its impact on the appearance and mood of a photograph; try photographing at different times of day - sunset, midday, sunrise.
  • Complete a documentary or photojournalist project. Find a local event, person or activity and take photographs over a longer period of time to create a visual story.
  • Join Instagram - the most extensive photography portfolio in the world. Follow at least 100 photographers you like; record your personal opinions on their work and this can be a valuable contribution to your GCSE Research grade.
  • Create a photographic diary; aim to create a picture each day which records/describes your life. This could be on Instagram.
  • Movement; practice freezing movement with your camera and a short shutter speed and blurring movement with a longer shutter speed and a tripod.
  • Make a number of photographs that document a poem or song; photography is really effective at evoking visual metaphor.

What wider reading can be completed to support the curriculum?

  • The Photography Book by Ian Jeffrey; An anthology of the most important photographs ever made.
  • The Digital Photography Book: Part 1 by Scott Kelby; a comprehensive beginners guide of the technical and visual skills needed to work in Digital Photography.

What websites could students visit to support the curriculum?

www.bestphotolessons.com - excellent easy to follow tutorials.
www.lensculture.com - website hosting the best in contemporary photographers work.
100photos.time.com - photography through history.
www.twistedsifter.com/2013/03/most-perfectly-timed-photos-ever.

How can parents/carers help and what can be done at home?

  • There are often extension activities as part of your son's or daughter's set homework projects, or ambitious ways of approaching the projects. Ask your son or daughter to share how they intend to challenge themselves!
  • Encourage children to be the 'family photographer' and document important family events and holidays.
  • Exposure to weekend newspaper supplements; many of these have examples of quality photography which will inspire students and help them understand the role of photography in the media.
  • Photography – encourage your son or daughter to use light in a thoughtful way, perhaps to add drama to a portrait or considering how light at different times of day affects the mood of the photograph.
  • Download a free trial of photography software or purchase this if possible. Experimenting with image manipulation software will develop digital creative skills.
  • Encourage your son or daughter to use different phones or cameras to take pictures. In the digital age we often have a number of these in the family home. This will increase their technical skills and aid understanding in the different ways images are captured.
  • Two techniques which can be used to improve the outcome of homework are:
    • Encourage your son or daughter to always take more photographs than they think they need; the art of photography is half the art of editing.
    • Encourage your son or daughter to 'shoot 360 degrees'; photography is a physical subject and exploring your subject matter from all angles will ensure you get the optimum shot.
  • Your son or daughter can experiment further with black and white photography, by taking family or holiday photographs and converting these to black and white in an app or computer software; this will increase their understanding of light and tone.

Questions to ask about what your son or daughter is working on:

  • What made you decide to photograph this?
  • How is this different to your other work?
  • What would happen if you used different lighting?
  • Is there a well-known photographer who works like this? Are you working in a particular style?
  • Galleries: Gallery visits are extremely valuable for young artists and photographers, allowing them to engage with artwork in 'real life' and often providing a range of free activities, course and workshops for younger artists.
  • Activities: entering competitions – there are competitions open to GCSE-age students run by Sony Photographers Award and the Young Travel Photographer of the Year; your son or daughter should be considering entering these. Their teacher will be able to support and guide entries.

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