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Pre-College in Baltimore Curriculum - Core Studio Courses


Students will be introduced to the art of animation through a series of hands on projects and workshops. Different techniques such as stop-motion, hand-drawn animation, paint on glass, flip books will be introduced. Experimentation will be highly encouraged.


This introductory level course initiates students to the enormous creative capabilities of an industry standard 3D animation software, Autodesk Maya. From a basic understanding of the program’s operation, students learn to model, texture, light, animate and render their creations. Students will also get a taste of 3D character animation as well as explore how 3D animation is utilized in the contemporary world.


This course introduces design principles and representation conventions of architecture. Students learn techniques in model-making and drafting with an emphasis on physical models and hand-drawn plans. Projects allow students to address proportion, scale, materials, and other important factors in the design process. Students explore new and important architectural works on class field trips. Estimated materials cost: $300.


This course explores the use of wheel-throwing and hand-building in ceramics as a process of innovation and exploration. Clay is a dynamic material, its potential for exploration and idea development cannot be underestimated. Students will be asked to address and explore their ideas in ceramics to realize more personal and complicated ideas and forms. A variety of ceramic surfaces will be explored to further strengthen and develop students’ ideas. Students will build skills and refine existing ones, to create more inventive, larger, and more complicated forms.


This course focuses on building proficiency in drawing and painting the human figure. Working from a live model, students learn proportion and anatomy as well as formal elements of drawing and painting such as composition and color. Note: If you choose this core studio, do not select the Strictly Figure workshop. Estimated materials cost: $500.


In this course, students explore various methods and processes in fiber media. In addition to material experimentation, students will draw and sketch their design ideas. They will use a range of textile and fiber techniques, including sewing, surface manipulation and embellishment to respond to the challenge of creating lightweight, flexible works placed on or off the body. Note: If you choose this core studio, do not select the Fiber workshop. Estimated materials cost: $200.


This course introduces the possibilities of creating art through time-based technology used in film and video game industries. Learn to visualize, plan, and model in three-dimensional space and to explore its animation potential. Working in teams, students will use both pre-existing and their own custom made assets to create simple interactive games and narratives for mobile and desktop platforms. Coding knowledge is helpful, but not necessary. Estimated materials cost: $250.


Students learn the elements of effective design as they focus on the meaning and impact of books, magazines, websites, CD covers, posters, advertisements, logos, and countless other media. Working in MICA’s Macintosh-based graphic design labs with the latest software, students complete assignments that emphasize the use of symbols, sequential design, the integration of imagery and typography, and conceptual thinking. Note: If you choose this core studio, do not select the Graphic Design workshop. Digital camera is required. Estimated materials cost (not including camera): $250.


In this course, students are challenged with the types of assignments that professional illustrators may encounter, through various digital and traditional media. Students gain understanding of how to use information to come up with an illustration concept. An awareness of client/illustrator relationship and methods of creating a portfolio of work will be addressed in this course. Note: If you choose this core studio, do not select the Illustration workshop. Estimated materials cost: $250.


Students work in the darkroom producing camera-less images and pinhole cameras, and then transition to digital cameras and digital processing of images. By the final week, students will propose a final project and opt to work within either a darkroom or digital context, with a level of flexibility in the tools used. This format allows students to explore the history and foundation of photography, as well as the future of digital photographic technology. Note: Students should bring their own digital camera that has at least 5 megapixels resolution and optical zoom. A 35-millimeter film SLR camera that allows for manual control of aperture, shutter speed, and light metering is optional. Estimated materials cost (not including camera): $350.


This course serves as an introduction to the practice of product design: where creations are imagined, developed, and realized. Using a variety of materials, students become familiar with design thinking, smart technologies, and presentation techniques to create products which address current and future issues. Note: If you choose this core studio, do not select the product design workshop.


Essentially a stenciling process, screenprinting enables makers to create colorful graphic images repetitively on a range of surfaces. Students will gain a solid working knowledge of the screenprint process, employing both traditional and contemporary methods of stencil making, film preparation, and printing. Within this technical framework, students will study concepts and aesthetics associated with repetition, sequencing, and variation.


In this class, students practice thinking and making in three dimensions and beyond, considering objects and form in tandem with space, time, and context. Students learn techniques of mold-making and casting in plaster, as well as the basics of working with wood and found objects to investigate contemporary sculptural approaches. Projects explore the use of alternative materials, found objects, and installation.


This class explores the fundamentals of making a movie. Students learn how to use a variety of professional cameras and lighting equipment as well as audio recording techniques, video editing, and post-production. Students can work in groups or go solo with short films, narrative film, documentary, or even experimental video installations. Note: MICA will provide all the cameras and gear for this class, but you may choose to bring in your own camera. You are required to bring an external HDD for the class.

This page was last updated on 12/07/2016.