Course Title: Create observational drawings

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2013

Course Code: VART6291C

Course Title: Create observational drawings

School: 320T Architecture & Design

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C5316 - Diploma of Graphic Design

Course Contact : Ruth Lyon

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 9438

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Phillip Allan email:

Nominal Hours: 50

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

In this course you will explore the specific techniques and considerations required for observational drawing, developing an understanding of perspective, line, space, colour and tone. You will also select and apply appropriate media and tools to create different effects in observational drawings.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUVACD502A Create observational drawings


1. Develop and refine observational drawing technique

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Investigate specific techniques and considerations for observational drawing
1.2 Explore ways to achieve perspective in drawings
1.3 Experiment with use of lines and edges
1.4 Consider ways to recognise and accurately represent space
1.5 Work with different techniques to observe and depict light and shade
1.6 Identify problems in own drawing technique and explore ways to resolve them


2. Explore media and tools for observational drawings

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Research historical and contemporary observational drawing in the context of own work
2.2 Determine how different media and tools can create different effects in drawings
2.3 Select and use appropriate media to achieve the desired outcome


3. Produce finished observational drawings

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Select subjects for observational drawing projects based on the needs of own work
3.2 Confirm key objectives for the drawing project
3.3 Create finished drawings that show command of observational drawing techniques and appropriate selection of media
3.4 Evaluate own observational drawing in terms of key objectives
3.5 Seek critical feedback from others
3.6 Reflect and act on the need for further development of skills

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will have developed and applied the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate your competency in the above elements.

Details of Learning Activities

In class activities will include:
•Peer teaching and class presentations
•Group discussion
•Online research
•Library research
•Independent project based work
•Teacher directed group activities/projects
•Class exercises to review discussions/lectures
•‘Workshopping’ of student projects
•Analysis/critique of relevant reading material

Out of class activities will include:
Independent research activity

Teaching Schedule

 Week Activity Learning Elements
 1 Introduction:
Drawing Basics: Chairs & assorted objects
Easel drawing - Charcoal
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 2 Tone: White sheet
Easel drawing - Charcoal
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 3 Composition: Tone & Texture: Assorted tin objects
Easel drawing – Charcoal & Pastel
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 4 Tone & Form : Fruit still life
Easel drawing – Charcoal & Pastel
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 5 Structural Drawing: Tricycles
Easel drawing - Pencil
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 6 Linear perspective: Interior spaces
Pencil with ‘viewer’
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 7 Opaque, Translucent, Transparent: Glass bottles
Table drawing – Ink, brush, nib & wash
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 8 Plants and vases
Table drawing: Ink line (nib) & wash
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 9 Colour, shape and form : assorted garments and objects
Table drawing – own choice of mixed media
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 10. Tone & Form : Coloured vases and books
Table drawing – Collage (paper/glue) and Ink
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6 
 11 Animal Project 1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.1 – 3.6
 12 Animal Project 1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.1 – 3.6
 13 Watercolour exercises and small objects
Table drawing – Watercolour
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.2 – 3.6
 14 Small colourful objects
Table drawing – Watercolour
1.1 – 1.6
2.1 – 2.3
3.1 – 3.6
 15 Submission of Folio of finished drawings, exercises, project and all backup images and drawings in room 3.10 from 10.00 to 11.00 a.m.  
 16 Final assessment
Pick up folio in a room to be announced

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Not required


Kaupelis, Robert, Experimental drawing
Dexter, Emma, Vitamin D: New Perspectives in Drawing
Betti, Clausia & Sale, Teel, Drawing: A Contemporary Approach
Walton, Roger & Cogliantry, Jen, The big book of illustration ideas 2
Klanten, Robert & Hellige, Hendrik, Illusive - Contemporary Illustration and its context

Other Resources

You will require materials and tools that are listed in the Graphic Design Kit.
RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this
course through our online systems and access to specialised facilities and relevant software. You will also have access of the library resources.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment is on-going throughout the course. Assessment tasks will require you demonstrate the application of knowledge and skills through practical projects and/or written tasks.  Assessment in this course include in class exercises and media project/s.

The assessment tasks are:
1. Portfolio of drawings 70%
2. Project 30%

An assessment charter summarises your responsibilities as an RMIT student as well as those of your teachers.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment tasks in this course are either formative or summative. Formative tasks provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment tasks. Summative assessment tasks in this unit are graded.

To demonstrate competency in this course you need to complete each one of the following pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard.
Assessment tasks:
Formative Assessment
Ongoing verbal feedback each drawing session
Section 4 : Animal Project - Due week 15
Summative Assessment
Section 1 : 6 ‘Major’ drawings from session weeks : 1 to 10 - Due week 15
Section 2 : Other ‘Major’ drawings and back-up drawings - Due week 15
Section 3 : All watercolour exercises and object paintings weeks 13 & 14 - Due week 15
Week 15 submit the finished drawings, exercises, Animal project and all backup images and drawings

You will receive feedback with verbal and/or written evaluation of your progress within class time. The submitted projects will be assessed with written feedback as well as a quality indicator that relates to separate components of the project and the overall outcome.

At the completion of the course, grading will be offered in addition to, and after, competency based assessment.

Grades which apply to courses delivered in accordance with competency-based assessment, but which also use graded assessment:

HD      Competent with High Distinction
CDI     Competent with Distinction
CC      Competent with Credit
CAG   Competency Achieved - Graded
NYC   Not Yet Competent
DNS   Did Not Submit for Assessment


Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix demonstrates alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available through the course contact in Program administration.

Other Information

The major learning experience involves studio based exercises, demonstration and production. It is strongly advised that you attend all sessions in order to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring the maximum opportunity to gain the competency.

Feedback - You will receive verbal and written feedback by teacher on your work. This feedback also includes suggestions on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your projects.
Student feedback at RMIT

Student Progress
Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy to assist you to achieve your learning potential. Student progress policy

Special consideration Policy (Late Submission)
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension. Special consideration, appeals and discipline (unresolved)

Cover Sheet for Submissions
You must complete a submission cover sheet for every piece of submitted work. This signed sheet acknowledges that you are aware of the plagiarism implications.

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism - RMIT University has a strict policy on plagiarism and academic integrity. Please refer to the website for more information on this policy go to Academic Integrity

Course Overview: Access Course Overview