Category Archives: Class 9

Class 9 | Critique

Vocabulary REVIEW

  1. The Practice: Concept + Form are ingredients that a designer uses to produce a composition that communicates meaning. The relationship between the Concept (idea) and the Form (process/result) produces the Content (meaning).
    • Concept: A comprehensive idea or generalization that brings diverse elements into a clear relationship.
    • Form: The organization of elements in a composition arranged according to principles that will support the communication of the concept.
    • Content: The expression, essential meaning, significance, or aesthetic value derived from the relationship between the concept and the form. Content refers to the sensory, subjective, psychological, or emotional properties of a composition, as opposed to our perception of its formal qualities.
  2. The Elements: basic components used as part of any composition, independent of the medium.
    • Line: An series of points, which has length and direction. It can be the connection between two points, the space between shapes, or the path of a moving point. A closed line creates a shape.
  3. The Principles: basic assumptions that guide the design practice.
    • Rhythm: Is a repeated pattern, such as what we hear in music. In different art forms, it can be a very complex interrelationship or a regular, steady beat.
    • Repetition: Repeating a sequence; occurring more than a few times. In design, repetition can create visual consistency and a sense of unity.
    • Pattern: Unbroken repetition, the repeating of an line, object or symbol.
    • Variety: Visual rhythm is often punctuated with variations or changes in color, texture, or form. Creating variety is easy. Too much variety can lead to chaos and confusion for the viewer. A designer must effectively use pace and spacing to create rhythm and achieve unity in a composition.
    • Monotony: Without variety or change, excessive repetition can lead to boredom and uninteresting compositions.


Group Critique (1 hour)

  1. Setup your work somewhere in the classroom.
  2. Present the following:
    • Creative Process Book with sketches, writing, assessment and work hour tally
    • Monotony Line Network
    • Variety Line Network
    • Staccato / Legato Pattern Mashups
    • Rhythmic Elevation drawing
  3. Review  Assignment #2: Aural Topographies : Visualizing Sound
  4. Review Vocabulary: Line, Pattern, Repetition, Rhythm, Variety, Monotony, Unity
  5. Based on the project guidelines, choose 1 student that has most successfully completed the project.
  6. Spend 10 minutes crafting a statement about the chosen student’s work. Discuss the finished work using the vocabulary above. The critique you give will not affect the student’s grade, but it will affect yours.
  7. Present your statement to the class and include:
    • your name
    • what you are presenting (title and design problem)
    • which parts are successful and why
    • which parts are unsuccessful and why

Lab (1.5 Hours)

Written Review

  1. Based on your short statement above, write a 1-page review of your classmate’s successful Rhythmic Elevation composition.
  2. Take a few minutes to interview the artist and determine if your understanding and interpretation of the work is similar or completely different from the artist’s intentions. It’s okay if it’s different!
  3. Your review must include a detailed description of the goals of the assignment (in your own words!) and must use the design vocabulary we’ve studied thus far within a discussion of Concept, Form, Content.
    1. Discuss how the Content of the Rhythmic Elevation composition, whose Concept is to create a variety of repeated “sounds” or rhythmic patterns within a figure/ground composition, communicates… “a rhythm similar to the sound of a chorus of birds, the swell and crash of an ocean, a certain type of music, etc.” or “a feeling of joy, sadness, excitement, etc.”
    2. Describe how the Form (use of  line weight, line direction, pacing and spacing of line, figure-ground relationship, organic and geometric shapes, repetition of horizontal pattern, use of economy, etc.) successfully supports the Concept and explain how and why this allows the Content to be communicated.


  • Please come and get your photo taken by the professor (for use in the next project)
  • IF you miss this class, contact the professor to get your photo taken or to learn about guidelines for taking your own.


  1. Finish your 1-page, well-written critique/review. The final piece should be typed and printed with your classmates name, the title of the project, and the date at the top. Make two copies, one for your creative process book and one for your classmate. Do not put your own name on the page.
  2. Materials needed next class: CPB, 9×12″ Bristol, pencils, eraser, cutting mat, knife/scissors, ruler/T-square, tubes of black and white gouache, brushes, rag, palette, water container, drafting tape. (NEW supplies!! — see supply list!)
  3. Check this website the day before for additional supplies
    UPDATE: Print out this document and bring it to class.