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Foundation Courses (2013-14)

View a list of courses in the Foundation program.

Click a Course's Title to read its description .

Course #Course TitleCredits
FF 100 Elements of Visual Thinking I 3 credits
Provides a foundation and an environment for investigating concepts and principles of visual organization, color, and design. Students cultivate the ability to access, field, and interpret different kinds of information. Encourages analysis of problems and personal inquiry as students develop vocabulary, technical skills, and critical awareness necessary for establishing a base for creative visual expression. A wide range of approaches and media may be used to develop greater perceptual and conceptual awareness and understanding. Each section of Elements of Visual Thinking is linked to the art history component, Art Matters, during one semester, and to the LLC component, Critical Inquiry, during the other semester. This structure emphasizes an interdisciplinary, cross-cultural learning experience. The instructor of Elements of Visual Thinking is also a primary advisor for the students for the entire freshman year.
FF 101 Sculptural Forms 3 credits
Principles of three-dimensional thinking form the groundwork for all design, planning, and building of forms in real space. Functional objects and utilitarian forms, sculpture and site-oriented installations, environmental art and architecture—all call upon a basic threedimensional vocabulary. This course helps students develop an understanding of the interaction of forms in space. Using basic sculptural processes and readily available materials, students investigate three-dimensional ideas and decision making.
FF 102 Elements of Visual Thinking II 3 credits
Continuation of Elements of Visual Thinking I.

Prerequisite: FF 100

FF 113 Voice / Vision 1.5 credits
This class is a support class for ESL students for their foundation studio courses ( Elements of Visual Thinking, Drawing, Painting, Sculptural Forms and Electronic Media and Culture). Students will concentrate on speaking, listening and comprehension skills, especially in regard to ‘critiques’, so they can better integrate into the classroom dynamics at MICA. Each week students will be asked to bring their studio assignments to class to practice presentation and critique skills. There will also be attention paid to brain storming, research, collecting reference images, so the student can learn to independently develop ideas for assignments. Cultural adjustment and social integration issues, as well as communication issues with teachers and classmates will be addressed. The class will also serve as a point of contact for mentoring/advising and aiding in communication with other studio instructors.
FF 148 Finding Baltimore 3 credits
In this course, Baltimore is not a place but a process of self discovery -- a “finding” of sorts that provides students with the opportunity to think critically about their place in the world. As a group, students will travel throughout the City; interact with a host of people from different walks of life; visit new, wonderful, and unusual places; and investigate the important issues and themes of the day. Students will keep a visual diary of their ideas, opinions and feelings about these interactions and make artwork in a wide variety of media. Students also have the opportunity to work with local elementary school children or senior citizens -- and produce small murals or other site specific artwork. This course emphasizes the importance of “being there,” present in the moment and fully cognizant of one’s own relationship to a real, living environment. The vast majority of class sessions will be held “somewhere” in Baltimore. Students will carpool. Guest speakers and community artists will visit with students throughout the semester.

Freshmen only.

FF 150 Painting I 3 credits
Presents the fundamental principles and techniques of painting. Through a wide range of problems, students learn about preparation of various supports, use of painting tools, color mixing, and analyzing surface qualities. Integration of drawing and design concepts are emphasized as students investigate color-value connections, articulation of form, composition, and spatial relationships. Working primarily from observation, students explore subjects ranging from still life, interiors, landscapes, and cityscapes, to self-portraits and the figure.
FF 175 Foundation Painting II 3 credits
Consolidates concepts and methods from FF 150 Painting I and leads students to expanded perceptual awareness. Projects may include still life, landscape, and the figure, as well as abstract and conceptual concerns to enhance each student’s formal and personal development. There is ongoing concern with painting materials and techniques.

Freshmen only.

FF 198 Drawing I 3 credits
With emphasis on observational drawing, this course develops the student's greater conceptual and technical understanding of drawing as an expressive medium. Various drawing materials, methods and subjects are explored as a means to cultivate perceptual ability and descriptive drawing skills. A range of drawing concepts is covered, including: effective use of line, mass, value, composition and perspective. Note: Cross listed - see FF 199
FF 199 Drawing II 3 credits
Continuation of Drawing I, further develops the student’s abilities in observational drawing, moving them into more individualized problems within a broader conceptual range. To help students find a personal direction, various approaches to drawing are explored. Students may work with, among other subjects, the figure, mixed media, color, narration, and abstraction. Prerequisite: FF 198.

Prerequisite: FF 198

FF 210 Electronic Media and Culture 3 credits
EMAC is a studio class that broadly introduces students to electronic media, cultural literacy, and technologies, as they relate to art and design. Recognizing that one must be as proficient in critical thinking as understanding the digital tools and processes, Students will be introduced to a variety of electronic art forms; network experiences; contemporary artists and designers; and authoring tools necessary for static and time-based production including video, digital photography, sound, and online interaction.