Signature Programs
The Fourth Period Electives


Animate! Stop-Motion with Claymation & Video
Ceramics, Beginning, Advanced
Drawing, Introductory, Advanced
Painting, Introductory, Advanced
Photography, Introductory, Intermediate, Advanced

(*) Courses qualify to fulfill graduation requirement. 

Full Year Course that meets once a week 

(*) Animate! Stop-Motion with Claymation & Video (grades 9-12) - in this course, students express their visual creativity through drawing, sculpting, constructing, and storytelling. Students will develop a concept, create a storyboard, and animate using stop-motion techniques with clay and other materials to create multimedia projects. Students have an option to use a cell phone, iPad, or a DSLR camera to capture images. Through experimentation and basic techniques for character design, they will study how to make a subject have a natural flow, and movement will be explored. Through the exploration of various programs such as Adobe Spark, Adobe Rush, Adobe Photoshop CC, and Adobe Premier Pro students will learn to animate as they work both in teams and individually. 

(*) Ceramics, Beginning (grades 8-12) - students use the Elements and Principles of Art (line, form, space, texture, color) to explore a variety of techniques, using clay. They learn the basics of hand-building: slab, pinch, coil, proper wedging and attaching, glazing, recycling, and firing. They try Sgraffito and slip trailing and make ringed “feet” on their pots. Emphasis is on proper technique, experimentation with design, and the creative process. Students are asked to find creative solutions for their problems. 

(*) Ceramics, Advanced (grades 9-12) - students participate in a Raku workshop twice a year. Raku is a Japanese method of firing done in an outdoor kiln, using a gas fire. The class emphasizes experimentation and being willing to “fail” to learn something new. Students begin to “lift” taller and thinner pots. Students are excited to see the products of their labors when a glaze fire comes out of the kiln. A field trip to view art and exemplary ceramics is taken every autumn. “Advanced students” are students who have had Ceramics class more than once. The Advanced class has second, third and fourth-year students in it. They are encouraged to watch videos and emulate making pots like the master ceramicists. They are also encouraged to look at Ceramics Monthly magazine and try new ideas. 

(*) Drawing, Introduction to (grades 7-12) (limit: 12 students) - designed for students with little or no formal training in drawing, will focus on the traditional techniques of draftsmanship. The emphasis is on accurately translating what the eye perceives onto paper. Projects and themes include contour drawing, creating a dynamic composition, negative space, scaling & amp; proportion, reductive drawing, six divisions of light, one- and two-point perspective, and how to draw from a photograph. Materials include graphite, charcoal, pastels, colored pencils, and ink. No prerequisite. 

(*) Drawing, Advanced (grades 8-12) (limit: 12 students) - the emphasis of this course is on exploring abstract ideas and modes of communication. In the advanced course, there is an equal emphasis on process and product. As opposed to the introductory class, students are encouraged to consider drawing beyond a physical representation of the world. Students are continually encouraged to push their boundaries and try new materials and techniques. Students will begin to ask (and maybe even answer) questions like, “what makes a drawing good or bad?” and “is a work still successful if it does not look like what I intended?” and “how does the form of my work relate to the ideas I am trying to communicate?” Materials include charcoal, colored pencils, Prismacolor markers, ink, graphite, and pastels. Prerequisite: Introduction to Drawing. 

(*) Painting, Introduction to (grades 8-12) (limit: 12 students) - is for beginning painting students with experience in drawing techniques. This class is devoted to observational painting, and nearly all of the assignments and exercises are working from life. The course is designed to be sequential in that we begin with the fundamentals and build on these skills throughout the year. The emphasis is on process, not product. Exercises in class include color theory via color mixing, underpainting, value studies, and painting from a still life. Suggested prerequisite: Introduction to Drawing. 

(*) Painting, Advanced (grades 9-12) (limit: 12 students) - the emphasis of this course is on exploring abstract ideas and modes of communication via paint. Students will apply their technical knowledge of drawing and painting learned in the introductory courses to create sophisticated and thoughtful works of art. Students have the opportunity to work from observation as well as from their imagination, and materials include acrylic, watercolor, and pastel. In the advanced courses, there is an equal emphasis on the process of making work as well as the final product. Prerequisite: Introduction to Painting, Suggested prerequisite: Introduction to Drawing. 

(*) Photography, Introduction to - through the lens of a 35mm film camera, Introduction to Photography offers students a new way to see and control light. They learn how to use a camera, develop film, and print in the darkroom. Projects include the camera obscura, various shooting assignments on and off-campus, and exposure to other photographers, both contemporary and historical. Students build on technique and vision. In-school 35mm loaner cameras are available. Spring term students will be introduced to Adobe Photoshop CC and digital photography as a preview for Intermediate Photography. No digital camera is necessary. 

(*) Photography, Intermediate (Prerequisite: Introduction to Photography) - with knowledge of camera basics, Intermediate Photography students complete assignments designed to build on vision and technique. Both traditional darkroom and digital projects using Adobe Photoshop will be covered. Students have the option to work in one or both mediums. Projects include challenges in seeing in new and unique ways; bookbinding; and assignments covering nature, sports, fashion, reportage, commercial, and environmental portraiture. Students will choose a contemporary or historical photographer to research, create a presentation in Slideshow, and present it to the class. 

(*) Photography, Advanced (Prerequisite: Intermediate Photography) - given their acquired base of Intro and Intermediate Photography classes, students are able to take their work to the next level. They’ll develop a personal vision and experiment with technique, make slideshow presentations of historical and contemporary photographers, create a solo-exhibition in the gallery, try alternative darkroom techniques, learn how to critique the photographic image, and create a final video project. Students can choose between darkroom and digital photography. 

(*) Printmaking (grades 8-12) (limit: 12 students; prerequisite: Introduction to Drawing) - this course introduces students to the fundamentals of printmaking, beginning with monotypes, drypoint etching, relief printing, and screen printing. Students will review the principles of design and learn how to create dynamic images with a focus on graphic design. In addition to print editions on paper, students will have the opportunity to create prints for stationery, t-shirts, and bags. 

(*) Woodworking (grades 9-12, limit: 5 students) - through a series of independent and group projects, students will learn how to safely work with a variety of hand and power tools to construct projects of their own design.
(*) Yearbook - students produce the annual yearbook publication (Mainsail) as a pictorial history of campus activities and memorable events for the current school year. They are required to create page layouts, take photographs, and write brief descriptions of events. Students also learn how to use Jostens Yearbook Avenue, an online yearbook system, to upload photos and edit yearbook pages. Each student will be assigned certain pages to work on and will be required to meet assigned deadlines. 
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