Course Title: Create observational drawings

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2019

Course Code: VART6438C

Course Title: Create observational drawings

School: 320T Architecture & Urban Design

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C5359 - Diploma of Graphic Design

Course Contact: Alistair Briggs

Course Contact Phone: +61 9925 9446

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Annette Cook

Phil Soliman


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

None required

Course Description

In this course you will explore and apply 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:

CUAACD502 Create observational drawings


1 Develop and refine observational drawing technique

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Investigate specific techniques and considerations for observational drawing 1.2 Establish and follow safe work practices for selected technique 1.3 Explore ways to achieve perspective in drawings 1.4 Experiment with use of lines and edges 1.5 Consider ways to recognise and accurately represent space 1.6 Work with different techniques to observe and depict light and shade 1.7 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

Details of Learning Activities

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

Out of class activities will include:
Independent research activity
Group sketching

Teaching Schedule



Assessment due


Orientation to program 



Introduction to course, materials and kit list. 
Explanation of assessments. 
Drawing and design presentation.
Exercise 1: Drawing as a communication tool
Rapid drawing - Grid 100 drawing exercise and reduction drawing exercise (memory)
Approaches to visualisation exercise
Drawing for others exercise A5 - A4 journal
Folio preparation for drawing storage.



Exercise 2: line drawing - easel drawing: chairs. 
Homework - cafe observations. A5 - A4 journal
Peer drawing review



Exercise 3: Composition drawing - Charcoal, chalk, selected composition - easel drawing. 
Homework - observations. A5 - A4 journal
Peer drawing review



Exercise 4: White shapes tonal drawing - Charcoal, chalk, selected composition - easel drawing. 
Homework - observations. A5 - A4 journal
Drawing publication post
Peer drawing review



Exercise 5: Structural drawing - Graphite pencil - easel drawing. 
Homework - observations. A5 - A4 journal
Peer drawing review

 DRAWING Tutorial session
publication post due


Exercise 6: Drawing nature - Ink and mapping pen, brushes, University cartridge.
Homework - observations. A5 - A4 journal
Peer drawing review



Exercise 7: Colour and transparency - Watercolour, brushes, pencil, University cartridge.
Watercolour basics exercises. Homework - observations. A5 - A4 journal
Peer drawing review



Exercise 8: Food wrapper illustration - Watercolour, brushes, pencil, University cartridge.
Homework - observations. A5 - A4 journal
Homework: Extended food illustrations
Peer drawing review



Brunswick cafes
Exercise 9: Drawing in public
Plein air drawing - sketchbooks in cafes- pencil, markers, brush pens - A5 - A4 Journal



Exercise 10: Silhouettes and detail - Ink and brush techniques.
Peer drawing review

Submit Folio of drawings week 11


Project 1: Observational Drawing from Different Viewpoints.

Introduction, discussion and examples



Project 1: Observational Drawing from Different Viewpoints Skills development exercises, planning and production of model



Project 1: Observational Drawing from Different Viewpoints Skills development exercises, drawing consultation, tutoring, feedback and production



Project 1: Observational Drawing from Different Viewpoints Drawing consultation, tutoring, feedback and production



Project 1: Observational Drawing from Different Viewpoints Refinement and submission in class

Submit Project 1
Observational Drawing from Different Viewpoints.  


Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

None required


Other Resources


Kaupelis, Robert, Experimental drawing
Sam Piyasena and Beverly Philp, Just draw it!
Dexter, Emma, Vitamin D: New Perspectives in Drawing
Helen Birch, Freehand : sketching tips and tricks drawn from art
Whitney Sherman, Playing with sketches : 50 creative exercises for designers and artists
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

 You will require materials and tools that are listed in the Graphic Design Kit and you will need to bring specific materials each week.
Some materials are provided. Your instructor will let you know what you need to bring for each week. It is essential that you have an A2 folder (plastic or paper) for storing your work in our plan drawers. You will also need a sketchbook (any kind you prefer) solely for this course. 

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.
You are advised to look at the Learning Hub at myRMIT site for ongoing updated information. A range of learning resources and references are provided throughout the year.

Amongst the library’s electronic resources is the ability to access for online tutorials and lessons. You may be given these tutorials (and other resources) to supplement your classroom learning. The University Library has extensive resources for Design students. The Library has produced a subject guide that includes quality online and print resources for your studies The Library provides guides on academic referencing and subject specialist help via your Liaison Librarian

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 exercises and creative activities. The assessment tasks are:
Major drawing project
Folio of drawing exercises. 

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

Assessment Tasks

To demonstrate competency in this course you need to submit each one of the following pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard.

Assessment tasks:
Exercises 1- 10 - in-class drawing exercises exploring different techniques, media, and observational approaches.

1. Folio assessment: Folio of drawings. Due week 11
7 x resolved drawings form 7 exercise sessions made during classes throughout the semester (includes sketchbook observations drawings)


2. Project assessment: Observational Drawing from Different Viewpoints. Due week 16 
Resolved drawings and support material.  



You are required to demonstrate all learning outcomes to a satisfactory standard.

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 checklist 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:

CHD    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 (unresolved)

Special Consideration Policy, Late Submission & Extensions
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.
Pick the following link for details on applying for Special consideration
Any student seeking an extension, should aim at doing so a minimum of 2 days before the deadline. Work submitted late and without an extension at any point will incur late penalties in accordance with university policy.
If you require an extension you must complete an extension form with evidence supporting your application and hand this to your instructor. Further links - Application for extension of time

On Time Submission and Impact of Late Submission
On time submission is an important factor in your assessment. Employability skills are embedded in all courses and these include Planning & Organising and Self-management. For this reason, late work impacts on your overall grade for each assessment task.
The following adjustments for late submission will be made: Work submitted late will be assessed for competency only. Submissions are only permitted during the period that the competency is scheduled.

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. Submission cover sheet

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 (unresolved)

Course Overview: Access Course Overview