Course Title: Create observational drawings

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2020

Course Code: VART6438C

Course Title: Create observational drawings

School: 375T Vocational Design and Social Context

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C5359 - Diploma of Graphic Design

Course Contact: Alistair Briggs

Course Contact Phone: +61 9925 9988

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Dean Jones


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. Investigate specific techniques and considerations for observational drawing

2. Explore ways to achieve perspective in drawings

3. Experiment with use of lines and edges

4. Consider ways to recognise and accurately represent space

5. Work with different techniques to observe and depict light and shade

6. Identify problems in own drawing technique and explore ways to resolve them


2 Explore media and tools for observational drawings

Performance Criteria:

1. Research historical and contemporary observational drawing in the context of own work

2. Determine how different media and tools can create different effects in drawings

3. Select and use appropriate media to achieve the desired outcome


3 Produce finished observational drawings

Performance Criteria:

1. Select subjects for observational drawing projects based on the needs of own work

2. Confirm key objectives for the drawing project

3. Create finished drawings that show command of observational drawing techniques and appropriate selection of media

4. Evaluate own observational drawing in terms of key objectives

5. Seek critical feedback from others

6. Reflect and act on the need for further development of skills

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

In class activities will include:
• 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


Introduction to course, materials and kit list. 
Explanation of assessments. 
Drawing and design presentation.

Assessment Task1B - Research blog requirements.
Exercise 1: Seeing and drawing chairs
Folio preparation for drawing storage.



Exercise 2: Line and shape

Peer drawing review



Exercise 3: Composition

Peer drawing review



Exercise 4: Form

Peer drawing review



Exercise 5: Structure

Peer drawing review

Tutorial session


Exercise 6: Line and form  Hatching/cross hatching

Peer drawing review

Tutorial session


Exercise 7: Pattern, texture, surface

Peer drawing review



Exercise 8: Outdoor perspective

Peer drawing review



Exercise 9: Watercolour packaging

Peer drawing review



Exercise 10: Colour and transparency

Peer drawing review



Exercise 11: Ink and wash

Peer drawing review

Due: Assessment Task 1B - Research Blog


Submit Folio.

Assessment Task 2: Three viewpoints drawing

Introduction, discussion and examples

Submit: Assessment Task 1A - Observational Drawing Folio 


Assessment Task 2: Three viewpoints drawing
Skills development exercises, planning and production of model.



Assessment Task 2: Three viewpoints drawing.
Completion of model, drawing consultation, tutoring, feedback and production.



Assessment Task 2: Three viewpoints drawing. Drawing consultation, tutoring, feedback and production.



Assessment Task 2: Three viewpoints drawing. Refinement and submission in class

Submit Assessment Task 2 - 
Three viewpoints drawing

*Drawing exercises may be be scheduled on different weeks depending on material availability.

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


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- 11 - in-class drawing exercises exploring different techniques, media, and observational approaches.

Participation in Feedback tutorial Week 4 or 5

Assessment Task 1A Observational Drawing Folio Due week 12
7 x resolved drawings from 7 exercise sessions made during classes throughout the semester
Include the Submission Cover List

Assessment Task 1B Research Blog Due Week 11

Assessment Task 2 Drawing of three 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.

This course is assessed for competency.

Grades which apply to competency-based assessment are:
CA   Competency Achieved
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 & 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 competency assessment. 
Submissions that are assessed as Not Satisfactory can be re-submitted once and this is 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

Course Overview: Access Course Overview