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Drawing 1: Drawing Skills

Course Level: 1 (HE4) | HE Credits: 40 | Approx. Duration: 12 months at 8hrs/week

This course provides a structured introduction to the skills of drawing using a wide range of media and methods and encourages you to look at things in a selective way, giving you the tools to record your observations.

You will explore a range of drawing media, and different approaches to mark making including using colour, collage and mixed media. The projects in the course ask you to look at objects in different ways and challenge you to focus on unusual perspectives, compositions and viewpoints. You will draw a wide range of different subjects throughout the course including subjects outdoors, figure and animal drawing, as well as objects in your home.

As part of this course you also research references to artists’ drawings, and develop your ability to think and view art critically. You are encouraged to join OCA study visits to further develop these skills and visit as many exhibitions as you can. You’ll keep a learning log (or online blog) and document your discoveries and observations there.

Jim Unsworth on Drawing Skills


The course aims to:

  • A1: expand the range of media and methods to produce creative effects
  • A2: develop your understanding and skill in the use of tone and colour
  • A3: develop an understanding of linear perspective and composition
  • A4: develop self reflective skills


On successful completion of the course you will be able to:

  • LO1: experiment with a wide range of drawing media to produce a range of effects
  • LO2: demonstrate use of tone and colour to represent three dimensions in creative outcomes
  • LO3: explain the application of linear perspective and composition in a single drawing or series of drawings
  • LO4: reflect on your own learning experience

Course content

  • Mark making and tone
  • The human figure
  • Observation in nature
  • Drawing outdoors
  • Draw and experiment (choose one of four options related to the preceding assignments)

Unit Leader

Emma Drye

Unit Leader for Drawing 1: Drawing Skills

Emma Drye profile image

“I trained originally at Brighton University as a painter, graduating in 1992 and going on to work for a number of years at the City College on their Foundation Course. In 2007 I attended the Tihany Post Graduate Programme run in partnership between Goldsmiths and the Budapest Academy of Fine Art in Hungary…”

Read the rest of Emma’s profile here