ARTS313 Intermediate Drawing - Section B, Dario Arcamone, Spring 2019

The object of this course is to apply the experience and stimulus from the Renaissance city of Florence to your own individual artistic identities. We will investigate the interactions of line, proportion, tonal value and weight. Students should realize that the results of all the Renaissance study drawings can be found in the form of paintings, sculptures and architecture in and around the city of Florence.

The first sessions will be a review of basic drawing techniques. Sketching or drawing outside should be a simple and direct way to visualize projects and ideas. The second part of the term will encourage ways for the student to express more deeply concept and technique through the vision of drawing.

Various media will be explored using wet and dry techniques, and the use of any kind of graphic method will also be encouraged.

Classes will be held indoors for life drawing and personal projects, and outdoors for on-site drawings.

Course Assignments

During the first sessions, on life drawing, we will concentrate on reviewing exercises such as: contour, gesture drawings, anatomy, and proportions. Various techniques will be explored such as graphite and water color. We will then move on to consolidate a personal approach in drawing with the help of any media and long life poses. Classes in life drawing will usually start with quick warm-up drawings.

Open drawing hours: Wednesday from 8 to 10 pm, Sant’Antonino building, Drawing room.

Students are required to have an end-of-term portfolio review.

MFA and Post-Bac students will develop drawing works in close connection with their own studio research (in agreement with the instructor).


A portfolio/folder is required, illustrating your progress and work at the time of the last review. This will include both drawings executed in class. You should keep a personal sketchbook with individual projects.


Refer to SACI handbook.
Attendance is required, absences will affect your grade: two unexcused absences result in a lowering of the grade by 1/3 of a letter; two late arrivals to class are considered the equivalent of one unexcused absence (arriving often late to class is one of the best ways to penalize your final grade).


1) Your grade will be affected by two unexplained absences.

2) Be on time for class: the assignment will often be explained at the beginning.

3) If you know that you will be absent on a given date you should notify the instructor ahead of time.

Final Meetings

The last week of class students will meet individually with the instructor for a portfolio evaluation of all work done in class, sketchbooks, homework and any extra work.

Evaluation & Grading

Evaluation is determined by your commitment to quality, completion of course assignments, in-class activities, fieldwork assignments and your sketchbook.
Intermediate Students are required to produce a minimum of three well-finished drawings (two of them are long life poses. See schedule).

Graduate Students
Students in MFA, MA, and Post-Bac programs are expected to complete additional assignments and to produce work at a level appropriate for students in a graduate program. They are graded accordingly and, if they successfully complete all course requirements for graduate students, receive graduate-level credit for the course.

Contacting Your Instructor

If you need to contact your instructor, feel free to send an email Dario Arcamone.

Materials (Materiali da Disegno)

Graphite pencils 2B, 4B, 6B

Matite 2B, 4B, 6B (called “Lapis” in Tuscany)

Graphite stick


Charcoal sticks


Kneadable eraser

Gomma pane

Sketch book

Blocco schizzi

Paper for the longer poses

Carta da disegno (Fabriano 2 or Fabriano 5)

Optional Materials

● Colored chalks: seppia, gray, sanguigna. A good, easy and cheap option is a 5.6 mm mechanical pen with the different options (Penna meccanica)

● Water colors (with big brush) in tube: black and white. Cheapest quality. For students that would like to work on watercolor more extensively, a burnt sienna and a warm-yellow can be purchased later. (Acquerello o Gouache)

● For the Monotype technique: Rosa Spina paper 2 pieces (not provided in class)


General Safety & Emergency Instructions

Click here for a pdf of SACI's General Safety & Emergency Instructions.

Additional Studio & Safety Rules

On Studio Use
The life drawing class will have nude models posing for students, and, as such, there are certain rules of conduct to be obeyed.
1. When the model is posing all doors and curtains should be kept closed.
2. Students should only be drawing while the model is posing, When the model is dressed then we can chat and relax.
3. It is essential to always leave the life room clean and tidy for the next class.

It is essential that care and attention is taken in regards to studio practice. This will be addressed the first week of classes. But beyond rules and safety and health issues, it is necessary to point out the importance of maintaining a certain order in the studio for the sake of all the students in the classes that utilize the space. At the end of class put your materials away and drawings and boards off the easels and into the storage shelves.

Air-Exchange System
When working in the ground floor studios an air-exchange system can be utilized for maintaining proper ventilation and extraction of undesirable fumes and odors. The control panel is located on the wall opposite of the stairway between the printmaking and painting studios.

There are also skylight panels, which can be opened and closed using switches located in the small sky-lit studio off of the main painting studio, another on the wall next to the stairs going into the basement storage area, and also in the studio with skylights off of the main lecture hall. Do not spray fixative on your drawings in the studios. Go out into the garden, or under an air-extraction hood in the printmaking studio.

Disposal of Materials
There are not as many toxic materials in drawing as there are in painting, but with some experimental drawing approaches there may be the necessity of properly disposing of these types of materials. Do not ever throw used solvents, thick washes, acrylic mediums, etc. down the sink. There is a special barrel for this located just to the right of the sink in the painting studio. The same goes for saturated rags or paper towels. There is a special disposal barrel in the printmaking studio next to the plate cleaning tank.

Storage Area

Drawing paper and portfolios can be stored on the flat shelves in the storage area. Lockers can be claimed for use by putting your name, term, and class on a piece of tape onto the locker door. They are located off the Clayton Hubbs Lecture Hall.


Week 1

Monday, January 7
Intro to class, studio use and safety
Gesture drawing
Homework: Open Drawing on each Wednesday evening: 8-10pm, Drawing room

Wednesday, January 9
Life drawing: The Gesture drawing; The Contour drawing

Week 2

Monday, January 14
Life drawing: Proportions

Wednesday, January 16
Life drawing: Sustained Study (Anatomy using tracing paper)

Week 3

Monday, January 21
Life Drawing: Gesture

Wednesday, January 23
Field trip: drawing outside

Week 4

Monday, January 28
Life drawing

Wednesday, January 30
Life drawing

Week 5

Monday, February 4
Life drawing: black/white chalk

Wednesday, February 6
Life drawing: black/white chalk

Week 6

Monday, February 11
Life drawing: Large scale Wet and Dry technique

Wednesday, February 13
Field trip drawing outside

Week 7

Monday, February 18
Life drawing: Ink

Wednesday, February 20


Week 8

MIDTERM BREAK (February 23 - March 3)


Week 9

Monday, March 4
Life drawing: Water color/Gouache

Wednesday, March 6
Life drawing: Monotype

Week 10

Monday, March 11
Life drawing

Wednesday, March 13
Life drawing

Week 11

Monday, March 18
Life drawing: Long pose_1.1

Wednesday, March 20
Life drawing: Long pose_1.2

Week 12

Monday, March 25
Life drawing: work in progress

Wednesday, March 27
Life drawing: work in progress

Week 13

Monday, April 1
Class critique

Wednesday, April 3
Life drawing: work in progress

Week 14

Monday, April 8
Life drawing: work in progress

Wednesday, April 10
Prepare for end-of-term-show

Week 15

Monday, April 15
Final portfolio review_Individual

Wednesday, April 17
Final portfolio review_Individual

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