Drawing I

I.     Course Prefix/Number: ART 131

       Course Name: Drawing I

       Credits: 3 (0 lecture; 6 lab)

II.    Prerequisite


III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course examines basics of drawing. Focus is on development of fundamental skills in proportion, value (shading) and perspective, use of form for personal expression. Content includes work from still life, live models and outside subject matter, media use of pencil, charcoal, conte, ink, and pastels. Studio work outside of regular class time required.

IV.   Learning Objectives

  1. Students will compose and draw original artwork (drawings) through observation in a variety of media to include:
    1. Pencil
    2. Pen/marker
    3. Charcoal
    4. Brush and ink
    5. Conté
    6. Colored pastel chalk or/oil pastels
  2. Students will create drawings that demonstrate an understanding of
    1. Positive and negative space
    2. Contour line
    3. Value (linear aspects and blended aspects)
    4. One and two point linear perspective
    5. Relative proportion
    6. Balanced composition
    7. Color making
  3. Students will draw from nude live model (approx. 4 sessions) as an introductory to life drawing.
  4. Students will evaluate and discuss through class critiques his/her own, as well as others’ art work

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. Exercises in visual perception.
    1. Principles of perception.
    2. Application of principles to drawing.
  2. Volume through rendering values.
    1. Principles of chiaroscuro.
      1. Light source
      2. Simplifying to basic shapes.
    2. Techniques
      1. Charcoal
      2. Pressed charcoal
      3. Conté
  3. Expressive aspects
    1. Elements
      1. Line
      2. Shape
      3. Value
    2. Composition
    3. Technique
  4. Ink as Medium
    1. Line, pen and ink
      1. Techniques
      2. Expressive elements/aesthetic elements
    2. Crosshatching
      1. Techniques
      2. Creation of volume and space
      3. Expressive elements/aesthetic elements
    3. Line, brush and ink
      1. Techniques
      2. Expressive elements/aesthetic elements
    4. Wet-in-wet
      1. Techniques
      2. Creation of volume and space
      3. Expressive element/aesthetic elements
  5. Health and Safety Issues
    1. Proper use of materials
    2. Clean-up procedures
    3. Venting of aerosol dispersoids
    4. Proper storage practices (including flammable and/or toxic materials)
    5. Ethical and legal considerations for disposal
  6. Synthesis. Final four weeks blending principles and techniques covered to date with personal concepts-expression.

VII.  Methods of Instruction

After class presentations of media and principles, students work in the studio while instructors help students to master the class presentations. There are group critiques of drawings.
Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Course is taught as face-to-face.

  1. Studio work: Drawings will be made during class time.
  2. Oral response: Participation in critiques.
  3. Field work: Drawings assigned as homework.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

  1. Sketchbook (9x12, or 11x14)
  2. Newsprint pad (18x24)
  3. 4B or 6B pencil—soft eraser
  4. Charcoal, stick and pressed, med/soft
  5. Kneaded eraser
  6. Chamois (c. 5” sq.)
  7. Fixative
  8. Various black ballpoint and felt tip pens
  9. Conte
  10. Pressed charcoal
  11. India ink (Pelikan or equivalent)
  12. Pen holder and fine, medium and wide tips
  13. Medium (No. 8 or 10) round brush, of the best possible quality ($$)
  14. Good paper for the media you will work in

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

  1. Based on the works critiques, students will be awarded grades which reflect proficiency in media, visual principles, and expressiveness.
  2. Attendance is mandated by instructor.

XI.   Other Course Information

Please note:
Some of the activities, lectures and assignments in this class may include imagery that is controversial, uncomfortable, shocking, and personally unpopular to one's beliefs. This class might also involve the use of nude models and nudity, which is standard practice in studio art classes. If a student objects to this practice, he/she is encouraged to discuss with the instructor early in the semester alternative ways of completing course requirements.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at www.oakton.edu/title9/.

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at www.oakton.edu/lgbtq.

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.