Visual Arts & Theory I

In this foundational course for the high school art program, students continue to work with a variety of two- and three-dimensional media. They explore the role of the building blocks of artwork—the art elements (shape, form, space, line, texture, and color) and examine the principles of design (unity, harmony, repetition, proportion, balance, rhythm, and movement)—to hone their knowledge of balanced composition. Students learn to recognize and examine various art forms from different cultures and times, building their understanding of the connection among artworks, artifacts and objects, and the cultural context in which they were created. Students also learn to write short reflections and evaluations of their own and other artists’ work, both strengthening their analytical skill and expanding their art vocabulary.

Visual Arts & Theory II

This studio course continues the journey from Visual Arts & Theory I and further explores traditional and experimental art techniques and approaches to create two- and three-dimensional pieces. Studio work focuses on refining both students’ craftsmanship skills and application of the art elements and design principles to effectively convey their ideas. Students continue to expand their analytical skills through written evaluations of their own and other artists’ work. They delve deeper into the cultural context in which selected artworks were created that helps students interpret the purpose and function of the works. Students develop informed ways of viewing and examining the work of other artists to better understand how critical investigation underpins the art-making process.

IB Visual Arts I—SL/HL

In the first year of IB Visual Arts, students develop a cohesive portfolio of artworks that illustrates their personal interests and involvement. Students independently select art materials, techniques, and styles to experiment with and apply in their studio work, thoughtfully considering the connection between the design and idea. Students use their visual arts journal to support and inform the development of their artwork through focused contextual, visual, and artists’ research. Together, the students’ research, creative work, and evaluations help students develop their own artistic voice, place their own work into a wider context, and consider its effect on an audience.

IB Visual Arts II—SL/HL

During their second year of IB Visual Arts, students prepare for the IB final exam by completing the comparative study project, creating an electronic portfolio with research and critical reflections, and exhibiting a body of works supported by a cohesive artist statement. HL requires advanced research and additional projects for completion at this level.

Art Electives

Offered in the past: Comic Book & Sequential Art

Students explore ideas of visual storytelling, storyboarding, character creation, and drawing fundamentals. They may also have the opportunity to explore the basics of stop-motion, cel animation, and video.

Drawing Club

Students have the opportunity to explore their own ideas through drawing. The instructor also offers short workshops on drawing figures, making comics, and strategies for collaborating with other artists.

Offered in the past: Card Making, Book Making, and Photoshop

Students explore various printmaking techniques such as monotype and monoprint to make hand-printed images. Using decorative papers, stamping techniques, glitter, beads, feathers, buttons, stickers, and other craft supplies, students will create a variety of images that can be a part of card, book, and journal designs. Students learn how to edit and create new digital images using Photoshop, a photo-editing program. Initial lessons focus on cropping, resizing, adjusting brightness and contrast, and colors of the image, creating simple digital paintings, as well as preparing images for printing.