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Studio Art Students Hone Their Skills In Advanced Portfolio Classes

Studio Art Students Hone Their Skills In Advanced Portfolio Classes

Studio Art Students Hone Their Skills In Advanced Portfolio Classes


Works by Portfolio students Steph Ionescu ’24 and Tessie Connell ’25.

Staff Writer

January 18, 2024

Bastien Sever '26

The Honors Portfolio (AR380) and Advanced Honors Portfolio (AR490) courses are offered to students during their Upper Mid and Senior years, respectively. Both levels meet simultaneously; this year, there are two sections taught by Ms. Colleen McGuire, Instructor in art, and Ms. Terri Moore, program director of studio art. 

Students investigate self-expression and conceptual problem solving and develop techniques in various mediums, such as graphite, oil, acrylic, and printmaking. They also conduct self-directed projects that emphasize concept development. 

Ms. Moore, has been teaching the course for over twenty years. She said, “Students will develop a sense of curiosity, answer that curiosity through their research, and use their critical thinking to develop their ideas into a solid concept. From there, they start to build their first piece. The process is not just about creating a pretty picture, but more about how one engages with their work.” 

Recently, students completed their first semester class projects. Ms. McGuire’s students created a maquette of a landscape and painted studies displaying a range of perspectives. Ms. Moore’s students investigated the school’s Biomass plant industrial interior and produced three pieces. 

Students began with graphite studies, then moved onto more detailed pieces of the same scene in charcoal. Eventually, students drew their compositions onto wooden panels using charcoal. Jacquo Pierre ’24 said, “We were challenged using charcoal on wood, and we leaned into creating edges with contrast rather than just using lines.” 

Phoenix Feng ’25, a student in Ms. McGuire’s class, said, “It was really interesting to work with 3D objects and arrange them in a composition to create observational drawings for our dioramas. Ms. Mc- Guire talked about the importance of observational drawing to hone our skills, and I love that we had the chance to practice that. “I also enjoy how there is a lot of self-guided work in portfolio class, so we can collaborate with and learn from each other,” she added. 

The course allows students to develop qualities that are useful outside of the field of art. Ms. Moore said, “In taking the class, you’ll learn how to be a creative problem solver, to think spatially, to be vulnerable, to push yourself where you’re failing and persevere, to create a body of work that has a narrative—and to become a kickin’ artist.”

Bastien Sever is a staff writer for The Record,

February 1st

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Editor's Note: This article was recovered from The Record's online archive. There may be stylistic and visual errors that interrupt the reading experience, as well as missing photos. To read this article as it appeared in print, view our print archives.

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Editorials are written by members of The Record's Executive Board. They typically center on issues related to the school or student life on campus.

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