PreCollege

Curriculum and Sample Schedule

MICA's PreCollege Art and Design Residency Program is an intensive college-level experience designed to help participants make the leap from thinking like high school art students to thinking like an artist.

All classes are college level, live sessions with built in independent work time, so be prepared to give the maximum time and effort both in and out of class. You must complete all curriculum units to receive college credit. Faculty and a MICA Undergraduate teaching assistant will support you and provide regular and ongoing feedback throughout the program. 

Below you'll find the course offerings for each session, alongside course descriptions and a sample schedule. Students who attend the 5-week session have the option to choose one course from the 2-week session and one course from the 3-week session.

  • 2-week course options (June 27 - July 8): Illustration, Drawing the Figure, Painting the Figure in Acrylic, Hand Drawn Animation, Graphic Design, Relief and Monotype Printmaking, Ceramics: Throw, Fire, Glaze, Fiber: Dye, Felt Weave, and Alternative Processes in Photography
  • 3-week course options (July 11 - July 29): Digital Fabrication & Prototyping, Illustration, Drawing the Figure, Painting the Figure in Oil, 2D Digital Animation, Graphic Design, Printmaking for Illustrators, Ceramics: Build, Scult, Mold, Fashion: Design, Sew, Construct, and Interdisciplinary Art
  • 4-week online course options (July 5 - July 29): Illustration and Drawing & Painting the Figure. Online courses are from 7:00 pm - 12:00 am (EST). 



Offered in 2-week, 3-week, and 4-week online sessions

Illustration

Illustration tells a visual story, provides visual interpretation, or creates a visual explanation of a narrative, concept, or process. Illustrators create images for posters, flyers, magazines, books, animations, and video games. Students in Illustration apply approaches to contemporary illustration as a means for creating or supporting a narrative/story. Students consider issues of character development, sequential imagery, storytelling genres, and the relationship between text and image. Final portfolios include a range of work exploring different illustration markets and genres.

Offered in 2-week and 3-week sessions

Drawing the Figure

In this course, students work from live nude models to investigate the technical challenges and expressive potential of a range of drawing media and approaches. In addition to investigating the technical challenges of the human form, students work through a progression of drawings that investigate how different approaches to the figure can address mood, spirit, intensity, viewpoints, and emotion. Students produce a portfolio of figure drawings that range in style from the traditional to more contemporary and conceptual approaches that embody a student's personal artistic vision.

2-week session

Painting the Figure in Acrylic

This course focuses on building proficiency for painting the human figure. Working from a live nude model, students learn proportion and anatomy as well as paints formal/expressive elements such as paint form, texture, movement, color, composition and their application to the execution of student's personal artistic vision. Students produce a portfolio that includes ambitious artwork that confronts the demands of large-scale format painting, portraiture, narrative painting, and the intensity with which paint expresses ideas. Students will work primarily with acrylic paints in this 2-week course.

2-week Session

Hand Drawn Animation

Animation students explore image, motion, character, and narrative storytelling through traditional hand drawn techniques. Students will be challenged to create work from their personal experiences and will work both independently and collaboratively. Portfolios will include concept drawings, storyboards, and completed short animations.

Offered in 2-week and 3-week sessions

Graphic Design

Type, image, composition, color, and concept, are among the essential tools used by graphic designers to solve visual challenges related to the creation of posters, websites, logos/branding, product packaging, and signage. In Graphic Design, students will utilize the Adobe Creative Cloud software to take on "real world", design industry challenges. Students find their own voice as they develop designs with commercial, social, public, and political impact. Students complete assignments that emphasize the use of symbols, sequential design, the integration of imagery and typography, and conceptual thinking. Final projects contain fully realized and executed designs that combine innovative solutions through their personal voice as a designer.

2-week session

Relief and Monotype Printmaking

Students will be introduced to the world of printmaking through various techniques including relief printing, and monotypes. These forms of printmaking can be simple and direct, resulting in bold graphic images. With these methods, ink is transferred to paper from the surface of linoleum cuts, woodcuts, found objects or other surfaces. Students explore the development of their own ideas in this medium from both technical and personal points of view. Large and small-scale prints are produced. Students will create various works on paper in both black ink as well as at least one project in color. Class will be held in MICA's new printmaking facility which feature the latest printmaking technologies, equipment and safety standards.

2-week session

Ceramics: Throw, Fire, Glaze

This course explores the use of wheel throwing in ceramics as a process of innovation and exploration. Students will explore how the potter’s wheel can be used as a tool and as a jumping-off point for questions about form, function, design and the potential of ceramics in sculptural applications. Students will learn about a number of firing and finishing options, including Raku firing. They will build skills and refine existing ones, creating more inventive, larger and more complicated forms. Students will have access to MICA’s state of the art ceramics studio and a wide range of ceramics materials including different types of clay, slips and glazes.

2-week session

Fiber: Dye, Felt, Weave

Students will learn techniques such as fabric dyeing, wet felting and weaving in order to create expressive and meaningful sculptural artforms. Working in MICA's well equipped Fiber Arts center students will have the oppirtunity to learn professional processes, use state of the art equipment and combine their unique artistic vision with fibers special expressive quality.

2-week session

Alternative Processes in Photography

Students will explore unique alternative photography printing processes such as cyanotype, salt prints, photograms and pinhole images. They will also have the opportunity to be introduced to the magic of analogue photography through demonstrations involving the large format camera and tintype process. Working in MICA's well equipped and state of the art analog and digital facilities, students will get a chance to experience all that alternative processes have to offer and create unique portfolio pieces.

3-week session

Digital Fabrication & Prototyping

Students in this course will receive hands-on experience in product design sketching and prototyping methods, computer-aided drawing (CAD), and MICA's digital fabrication shop which includes a CNC router and 3D printers. The theme of this summer's course is - "Public Objects." Everyday encounters with objects on the street - benches, newspaper boxes, parking meters - affect how public space is used. What can we, as product designers, do to improve, challenge, or subvert these public spaces? In this course the public spaces around MICA will be the context to develop new designed objects. Through a variety of product design methods, including a full-scale digitally fabricated object, the students of this course will design and build their own "Public Object."

3-week session

Painting the Figure in Oil

This course focuses on building proficiency for painting the human figure. Working from a live nude model, students learn proportion and anatomy as well as paints formal/expressive elements such as paint form, texture, movement, color, composition and their application to the execution of student's personal artistic vision. Students produce a portfolio that includes ambitious artwork that confronts the demands of large-scale format painting, portraiture, narrative painting, and the intensity with which paint expresses ideas. Students will work primarily with oil paints in this 3-week course.

3-week session

2D Digital Animation

Animation students explore image, motion, character, and narrative storytelling through 2D digital techniques with an introduction to stop motion. Students will be challenged to create work from their personal experiences and will work both independently and collaboratively. Portfolios will include concept drawings, storyboards, and completed short animations.

3-week session

Printmaking for Illustrators

Printmaking and Illustration are intrinsically linked media with a long and rich history. At the heart of this relationship is visual storytelling and the ability to communicate themes or ideas through images. Using poems, stories and news articles as prompts, students will create illustrations through various printmaking methods including relief and intaglio. The end result will be a portfolio of works on paper that have both personal and universal meanings. Class will be held in MICA's new printmaking facility which feature the latest printmaking technologies, equipment and safety standards.

3-week session

Ceramics: Build, Sculpt, Mold

This course explores the use of ceramics and a range of hand-building techniques towards the development of sculptural forms. Students will learn hand-building techniques and how to make molds and explore the potential for figurative exploration, abstract, architectural and vessel based forms. Students will utilize the wide range of facilities available in MICA’s Ceramics department and access to materials including clay, slips, and glazes.

3-week session

Fashion: Design, Sew, Construct

This course teaches students the fundamentals of designing fabric, digitally printing custom fabrics, construction of garments or other wearables, and exploring personal style through fashion. Working in MICA's well equipped Fiber Arts Center students have access to state of the art equipment and materials to make their ideas a reality.

3-week session

Interdisciplinary Art

This thematically based course considers the possibility and implications of working in a variety of different media, such as drawing, painting, photo, video, sculpture, installation, collage, mixed-media, performance and more. With a focus on multidisciplinary exploration of concepts, students are encouraged to create projects that emphasize the inextricable link between form, material, process and idea. Emphasis is on personal expression through visual art and narrative approaches. Students develop personally significant directions for making work, as they look to their lived experiences and/or current social and political issues for inspiration. Final portfolios will consist of projects that engage a variety of media approaches, innovation, and finished work with strong conceptual components.

4-week online session

Drawing & Painting the Figure

This remote learning course focuses on building proficiency with painting and drawing the human figure. Working with clothed models virtually, self portraits, curated photographs, and master paintings, both traditional and contemporary approaches are explored. Considerations such as proportion, anatomy, form, color, expression, and composition are emphasized in the context of one's unique artistic vision. Each student explores the structural, psychological, and emotional aspects of the human form as they engage with their chosen concepts and ideas. A collaborative brainstorming and critique process allows students to support each other in developing these personal directions. Students produce a portfolio which is ambitious in scope and confronts the demands of large-scale formats, portraiture, narrative, and the intensity with which figure drawing and painting can express ideas.

Sample Weekly Schedule (all times are EST)
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
8:00a - 8:30a Breakfast Breakfast Breakfast Breakfast Breakfast Activities (Baltimore Tours) / Fitness Center 
9:00a - 12p  Class Class Class Class Class Activities (Baltimore Tours) / Fitness Center 
12p - 1p Lunch Lunch Lunch Lunch Lunch Field Trip Community Building Program
1p - 4p Class Class Studio Class Class Field Trip Breakroom
4:00p - 5:00p Activities / Trips / Fitness Center  Activities / Trips / Fitness Center  Activities / Trips / Fitness Center  Activities / Trips / Fitness Center  Activities / Trips / Fitness Center  Visiting Artist/Lecture Visiting Artist/Lecture
5:30p - 7:00p Dinner Dinner Dinner Dinner Dinner Game Night Coffee House
7:00p - 9:00p Workshops Staff talks Workshop Visiting artist talk Activities Activities
9:30p - 10:00p Evening check-in Evening check-in Evening check-in Evening check-in Evening check-in Evening check-in Evening check-in