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7 Creative Sketchbook to inspire

 An A2 Art sketchbook page by Ruth Beeley:

This A Level Art sketchbook page is exactly as a high school Art sketchbook should be: an exciting investigation of media and ideas. Using ‘modrock’ (a plaster of paris bandage) and glue to create raised areas, with other mixed mediums such as wire, ink and Biro pen, Ruth adds careful and detailed drawings over a chaotic ground. The piece is not a finished, resolved image: rather, it is a beautiful and competently executed exploration of ideas.

An A2 Art sketchbook page by Lucy Luu:

At its essence, a sketchbook page should provide insight into a student’s ideas and intentions, as well as revealing the influence of other artists. This A Level Art sketchbook page is beautiful in its simplicity: devoid of all superfluous decoration, it shows a dedicated and committed student learning a technique from an artist and then carefully applying this to original artwork.

Sketchbook pages completed as part of a VCE Studio Arts folio by Australian high school student Heesu Kim:

Heesu writes about the project: “I want to create

7 Tips to Draw And Paint Faster

 1. Use a ground

There are many benefits to working on a ground. One of these is increased painting or drawing speed. A ground covers a painting or drawing surface from the outset. It can act as mid-tone, with only black and white used to apply dark and light areas (as in the examples below) or be left partially visible in the final work. This results in an artwork that is much faster to complete (see our article about painting on grounds for more information).
The beautiful A Level portrait on the left has been completed upon a pale brown ground (this provides a mid-tone skin colour and is also left visible in the background). On the right, a wash of ochre, blue and brown provides a background to the drawing black and white pencil drawing.

2. Incorporate mixed media /patterned surfaces / textural elements

As with using a ground, patterned, decorative or textural items can cover areas of an artwork quickly. Although this strategy should be used with care, selecting only materials which support or enhance

A Guide to Make Line Drawing

When we first picked up a pen or pencil and started making marks on paper, we began with line. Whether self-taught, through trial and error, or guided by others, we learned how line defines form, creates structure, divides a frame, traces contour, creates tonal variation (cross-hatching, for example) and leads the eye from one part of a work to another. Initially a mechanism for getting outlines onto paper – identifying edges – we begin to applaud lines for their own merit: celebrate their presence…whether a quiet flick of charcoal on paper or a streak of graphite.

This article contains exercises for Art students who wish to produce contour line drawings, cross contour drawings, blind drawings and other types of line drawings. It is a teaching aid for high school Art students and includes classroom activities, a free downloadable PDF worksheet and inspirational artist drawings.

Blind Contour Drawing

Definition: A blind contour drawing contains lines that are drawn without ever looking at the piece of paper. This forces you to study a scene closely, observing every shape and edge

Tips to make an art portfolio for college

What should be in an art school application portfolio? How do you present a portfolio? What gives you the best chance of being accepted by the art school of your dreams? This article explains how to make an art portfolio for college or university and is packed with tips from leading art and design school admissions staff from around the world. It is written for those who are in the process of creating an application portfolio for a foundation course, certificate, associate or undergraduate degree and contains advice for specific art-related areas, such as Architecture, Fine Art, Graphic Design, Illustration, Interior Design, Animation, Game Design, Film and other creative, visual art-based courses. It is presented along with art and design portfolio examples from students who have recently gained acceptance to a range of art schools from around the world, creating a 9,000 word document that helps guide you through the application process.

What is an art school application portfolio?

In addition to meeting academic requirements, Art and Design Schools, Universities and Colleges typically require a practical art portfolio as part of the application process (this is often accompanied by a personal statement and/or an art school interview –

Things Every Beginner Should Know About Painting with Acrylics

Lesson One: Understanding the Medium

Of the many acrylic lessons you will certainly learn, many would argue that the first lesson should be understanding the medium itself.

Simply put, what is acrylic paint? The answer is a water-soluble medium made from a synthetic resin binder mixed with pigments. The water soluble aspect of acrylic paints means that a painting dries quickly and you do not have to use solvents to dilute the paint or for cleaning brushes or a palette.

All Dry! After an acrylic painting on canvas dries the surface becomes water resistant, and a canvas can be rolled up and stored with no fear of cracking or damaging. This is all in contrast to oil paints, which need to be thinned with solvents, take much longer to dry and harden as they do so, making them quite fragile and not so easily transported. This medium can be an exciting prospect because acrylics have so much versatility.

You’ll notice when painting with acrylic paint that they dry to a flat finish. But mediums abound that can be added to the paints to:
-Increase luminosity and surface shine
– Get a matte or semi-matte

Tips to Create an Excellent Observational Drawing

What follows is a list of tips that have been written specifically for high school art students who are looking to improve the realism of their observational drawings. It is for those who have already selected something appropriate to draw (see this guide for selecting subject matter if you need help with this) and who understand how to compose a drawing well (this will be covered in a subsequent article).

Tip 1: Look at what you are drawing

Failing to look at what you are drawing is one of the most fundamental errors an Art student can make

This sounds obvious, but it is the most common error made by art students. Many students attempt to draw things the way that they thinkthey should look, rather than the way they actually do look.

The only way to record shape, proportion and detail accurately is to look at the source of information. Human memory does not suffice. Forms, shadows and details are hard enough to replicate when they are right there in front of you; if you have to make them up, they appear even less convincing. In order to produce an outstanding observational drawing, you

10 Watercolor Painting Techniques for Beginners

1. Research is underrated

Delve into a lot of watercolor instruction resources. As often as you can, hear directly from practicing artists–what they think of their chosen medium and what they have to share in terms of tips that might help you. Consider a subscription to Watercolor Artist Magazine. It is a great place to start as you will receive an entire year’s worth of step-by-step watercolor articles and demos to explore during your studio time, growing in your creativity and skill with each issue you receive. Splash: Best of Watercolor—Digital Collection is the resource I keep close at hand to learn the methods of contemporary watercolor artists. With more than 350 paintings showcasing contemporary watermedia, this collection truly celebrates all the unique innovations and explorations of watercolor painting.

2. Don’t buy a premade palette

Create your own watercolor palette rather than going the easy route with a premade one. Painting this way allows you to better understand what each color is capable of doing and how you can work with it. A good starter palette might include:
-Cadmium yellow
-Cadmium red
-Permanent rose
-French ultramarine
-Cobalt blue
-Raw sienna
-Burnt sienna
-Burnt umber
-I also

3 Easy Steps You Can Take to Learn How to Paint

1. Understand Your Materials

There are dozens of oil painting lessons out there. But the first, and most crucial, step of painting instruction is coming to know your materials. All oil painting lessons start there because knowing how your paints respond allows you to fully understand how to exploit them to their fullest potential, and how to avoid any big mistakes.
Traditional oil paints consist of ground pigments combined with a drying oil, such as linseed, walnut, or poppyseed oil. A “drying oil” is one that absorbs oxygen from the air, which causes it to dry and harden over time, forming a flexible and resistant surface. Each pigment requires a different amount of oil to reach the consistency needed for painting. The amount of oil absorbed by a pigment directly affects its drying time, which can be useful for an artist to know as he or she works in the studio to learn painting.

When applying layers of oil paint most artists follow one of the most popular oil painting lessons known as the “fat-over-lean” rule. ‘Fat’ oil paint contains more oil than pigment, which increases the length of time it takes to dry. ‘Lean’

Cool Art Project Idea

This is a concise article, aimed at helping students generate ‘cool’ art project ideas. What follows is a list of art project ideas that might be suitable starting points for those studying high school qualifications such as GCSE, IGCSE or A Level Art.

These ideas have been collated from students, teachers, artists, examination papers and from those kind enough to comment on the Student Art Guide. This list is largely aimed at helping the brainstorming process, prompting original thought and spurring a student into thinking creatively. The suggestions are primarily subject-matter orientated (i.e. based upon a physical object or scene) and do not begin to address the theme or message –  something that is as important as the subject itself. For those students who need more in-depth direction and guidance in this area, I recommend reading the accompanying guide for selecting good A Level Art project ideas. Students may also like to read this list of possible Art exam topic interpretations.

Creative Art Project Ideas

  • Chickens in cages
  • Pigs in pens
  • Discarded / rubbish
  • Abuse
  • Alcoholism
  • Drugs
  • Bullying
  • Self-harm
  • Binge eating
  • Sugar and the malnourished

5 Essential Tips for Learning How to Draw

1. Find the Best Drawing Tools for You

The first step of learning to draw is figuring out what drawing tools you want to work with and gaining an awareness of what your chosen drawing medium is capable of. Working with a graphite pencil is quite a different experience and utilizes a completely different process than working with a stick of charcoal, oil pastel, pen and ink or colored pencil. Drawing Secrets Revealed by Sarah Parks and the video download Top 10 Art Techniques can really help you reach your fullest potential by giving you an understanding of the different drawing techniques used with different drawing media. For example, if you want to really work on your mark-making with an emphasis on hatching or cross-hatching, you’ll probably want to work with graphite. For more expressive marks, reach for charcoal.

2. Use Mistakes as a Lesson

When you start to draw the first thing you will want to do is loosen up—literally. You want to draw fluidly and spontaneously, so the first thing I was always taught to do is warm up with exercises like drawing circles or cubes. This gets your hand and eye working in

Tips to Draw People

1. Drawing Hands

Keep in mind the bone and muscle structure beneath the surface. In some places the surface is influenced by the angular bones, in others by the soft muscles. Don’t round off all the forms or the subject will look rubbery.

2. Drawing People and More

A classic way to draw something with correct proportion is to create a grid and place it over your reference photo, then draw a grid on your paper. Erasing these lines can be a pain, so a lightbox (or window on a sunny day) can be used instead. Place the grid on the lightbox, tape it down, then place your paper over the grid. You can see the grid through the paper and there’s no erasing later.

3. Drawing People

A useful device is a shaft or midline, which is a line drawn through  the middle of a human form to see how it is supported. A midline acts like the armature underneath movement and direction. It also simplifies the process of seeing and indicating the angles of specific forms.

4. Opposites Attract

An essential principle

The Top 11 Museums in The World

Which are the best museums of the Western World? While such list is entirely subjective, we have tried to be as objective as I can be, taking in consideration its collections and history. So here is a guide to the premier Museums of the Western World and a link to its websites.


1- The Louvre
in Paris is arguably the world’s most famous Museum. Take an online tour through its wonderful collection of antiquities and painting, including -of course- Leonardo’s Gioconda


2- The Metropolitan Museum of Art
in New York is arguably America’s greatest museum. Its spectacular collection is especially strong in American painting and Egyptian Antiquities.


3- The British Museum
is England’s greatest museum -and one of the best in the world- of Ancient Arts and antiquities, with an excellent collection of Art from Ancient Egypt to the Middle Ages.


4- The Vatican Museums
houses the inmense and outstanding Art collection of the Catholic Church, including the Sistine Chapel or Raphael’s The School of Athens


5- The Hermitage Museum
(or Ermitage) is the