Six of the Best (comparative study issues and advice)

It’s September, so some of you will be just starting the bright and shiny adventure that is IBDP visual arts, while others will be returning for your final year. So (unless you have already completed it) part of the visual arts coursework that you will be/are engaged in is the Comparative Study. Examiners have now seen work uploaded for three examination sessions (May 2016 and 2017, and November 2016), and some issues and patterns are beginning to emerge. This blog is not intended ...

100 EXHIBITION HOURS (the conundrum of time and quality)

Lawrence is one of my visual arts students. He has repeatedly asked how much time each he should devote to each of the course components. (Hi Lawrence, I know you read my blog!) Of course, the course is taught holistically and there is no ‘hours per component’ recommendation in the visual arts guide. Visual Arts guide page 16: “Although the core syllabus is identified in this guide through subdivided segments, teachers are encouraged to approach the teaching of the visual arts course in a ...

Selectivity and Distillation: the Process Portfolio is NOT a Diary

Diaries. Journals. Sketchbooks. They serve a range of purposes; diaries document the momentous and the mundane, the day-to-day detritus, and the sporadic moments of joy and/or despair. Artists’ diaries can give a good insight into the creative processes. (See the illustrations included here.) Tate website “A diary is a record of events or experiences. From sketchbooks to video diaries; and from the mundane and everyday to big life events and how these make us feel… We have pulled together a selection of art to ...

“When NOT to…” (Visual Arts Exhibition No Nos)

By now I expect that many of you (students) are on holiday – so I’m pleased to see that you have spared a moment to check on the visual arts blog! If you have graduated I’m happy to see you and good luck on July 6th (RESULTS day!) If, on the other hand, you are in between the first and second year of the course, some of this blog may prove useful. I’m reflecting on more things seen during the last visual arts ...

NUDITY, GOLDFISH AND ETHICS

Both my June 2017 blogs are in response to things encountered as a visual arts examiner/moderator. This one is aimed at teachers and to some extent is about ethics and the limits of art submitted for assessment. The other one - YOU CANNOT BE SERIOUS… - is for students and relates to assessment and the differences in perception from the perspective of a teacher and that of a moderator, but the audience for each could be reversed. (Feel free to read both!) Anyway, ...

YOU CANNOT BE SERIOUS! – 10 SNAPSHOTS FOR AN EXHIBITION? 24/30? AGAIN, YOU CANNOT BE SERIOUS!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0hK1wyrrAU John McEnroe coins "You cannot be serious" “classic McEnroe outburst. John McEnroe v Tom Gullikson at Wimbledon in 1981. Umpire was Edward James”. Both my June 2017 blogs (for teachers and for students) are in response to things encountered as a visual arts examiner/moderator. This one is for students and relates to assessment - and the differences in perception from the perspective of a teacher and that of a moderator. The other is aimed at teachers and to some extent is about ethics ...

“DOES DIGITAL ART MATTER?”

“DOES DIGITAL ART MATTER?” The question was posed by a teacher in a recent IBDP Visual Arts Workshop.   The “Lens based, electronic and screen-based forms” column in the Visual Arts Guide “Art-making Forms table” has provoked some heated discussion among art teachers, some of it from extreme ends of the spectrum – e.g. those who have serious doubt about the value of spending even more of your life just tapping at a keyboard and staring at a screen as opposed to ...

WRITING FOR THE EXHIBITION

Hi students, if you are in a Northern Hemisphere school and in your final year as a DP visual arts student, the end is nigh. DP Arts deadlines are earlier than the deadlines for other DP subjects, and your teacher will probably ask for various files even before the ‘official’ deadlines so that he/she can check that all is OK. It’s probably a little stressful for you, but I know quite a few teachers who find this time of the year very ...

It’s March – are you ready for the Visual Arts uploads?

For many of us, this will be the 2nd time we upload files for the ‘new’ visual arts course. Hopefully you learned from your experiences last March/April! Here are some reminders 1 THE UPLOAD – DATES AND DEADLINES OVERVIEW The deadlines occur in April, every 10 days, starting on April 10 (predicted grades and exhibition marks). Then April 20 (Exhibition, multiple files) April 30 (Comparative Study and Process Portfolio) (see illustration, screenshot from the Handbook of Procedures for 2017 for visual arts on the OCC) If you are not familiar with ...

Part 2 of WHERE DO IDEAS COME FROM?

Last month I asked "Where do ideas come from?" (pretty much anywhere!) and wrote about one way of coming up with art ideas - by being aware of what has gone before (“standing on the shoulders of giants”)   This month I want to remind you of the importance of your VAJ – never go anywhere without it – and flag up a great YouTube video! 1 The JOURNAL (VAJ) (“Does your idea have legs?”) The journal is VITAL! The first suggestion I make to any ...