Home /
Fine Arts / Visual Arts
page tools /

Visual Arts

Preparation in the visual arts provides our young women with creative and critical problem-solving skills in addition to developing their own appreciation of art as a unique visual record of the diverse cultures of the world. The Visual Arts take a holistic orientation to education. Our curriculum is designed to challenge McAuley's young women to:

  • engage to the imagination.
  • foster flexible ways of thinking creatively and critically.
  • develop disciplined effort.
  • build self-confidence.
  • achieve technical skills for personal expression.
  • build portfolios for future study and career opportunities.

Competitions/Exhibitions

Our art students participate in many private and public-sponsored competitions. They also enter into many exhibitions throughout the South Chicago Metropolitan area and Illinois, including the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards and Illinois High School Art Exhibition. The Art Program sponsors the Annual Juried Art Exhibition at Franklin Framing Gallery in Blue Island.

Classes

Introduction to Drawing

This course provides an introduction to basic drawing techniques, materials, composition skills and elements of design. Still life and portraiture are among the subject matters covered. This is a required course for those interested in pursuing Introduction to Painting, Illustration, Studio Art and Advanced Placement Studio Art.

Introduction to Painting

This course provides an introduction to basic painting media, techniques, color theory, composition skills and elements of design. Still life, landscape, portraiture and non-representational ideas are among the subject matter covered. This is a required course for those interested in pursuing Studio Art or Advanced Placement Studio Art. Introduction to Drawing is a prerequisite.

Ceramics

This course explores the nature of clay. It involves the discussion of ceramic terms, the preparation of clay, demonstration of various hand building techniques, sculptural composition, glazing techniques and introductory wheel throwing. Special requirements include outside research and additional time for assignments and preparation of clay. One extra period a week is required outside of regular class time. This is a required course for those interested in pursuing sculpture and AP Studio Art 3-D Design.

Sculpture

This course builds upon previously learned skills and techniques. It is designed to allow the student to explore the methods of creating 3-dimensional art. It includes working with clay, paper/paper maché, plaster, wire and other sculpting media to create non-representational, as well as representational works of art. Ceramics is a prerequisite.

Art & Emerging Technology

This course is open to freshman, sophomore, and junior students. It is an elective course in which students would receive one-half credit for Fine Art. Art and Emerging Technology will provide students with a variety of creative applications of contemporary technologies including web design, graphic imaging, and animation. Students will be able to transfer and apply these skills for further exploration in high school, college preparation and or work-related career paths. Final Assessment will include a digital portfolio. This course is a prerequisite for Web Page Design and Digital Animation.

Integrated Biology & Art

2 credits - 1 Biology, 1 Introduction to Drawing/Introduction to Painting 2 semesters
Time: 1 period daily for Biology, and 1 period daily for Art

This course provides an introduction to basic drawing techniques, materials, composition skills and elements of design integrated with the laboratory biology curriculum. The biology curriculum presents a survey of aspects of structure, function, evolutionary history, behavior and relationships to the environment by presenting the unity in the diversity of life forms. This course fulfills the freshman biology requirement, as well as the Introduction to Drawing/Painting prerequisite for further art courses.

Graphic Design

This course is an introduction to the basic concepts of 2-D design. Students will explore visual communication concepts and design principles through creative problem solving. Various graphic design media will be used to develop layout, typography, fashion, package and product design identity. Strong emphasis is placed on utilizing the personal computer as a graphic design tool. This class will be taught in the Mac Lab. Art and Emerging Technology is recommended but not required.

Digital Animation

Digital Animation will provide students with creative problem solving and professional discipline in the world of visual communication and technology. It will introduce students to the creative field of digital animation. Through the use of cutting edge software (Adobe Flash), students will learn how to produce their own unique multimedia animation productions to be used in Web applications, digital portfolio artifacts or to stand on their own as works of art. Students will incorporate music and sound effects in their animation productions along with hand drawings, scanned images and text. The fundamentals of animation, such as storyboarding, timing, exaggeration and staging will be emphasized. Art and Emerging Technology is a prerequisite.

Web Page Design

Web Page design involves learning skills and using various software and publishing tools in the Mac lab. Students will design, publish and update their own website using Adobe Creative Suite (Photoshop, Fireworks, Dreamweaver and Flash). Additionally, students will learn how to incorporate graphics, video, animation and text into their site. Art and Emerging Technology is a prerequisite. Digital Animation is recommended but not required. Graphic Design is also recommended but not required.

Illustration

This course is open to sophomore, junior and senior students pursuing further study in art. Illustration is a continuation of Introduction to Drawing, providing more in-depth study of media and techniques. Drawing II is designed to engage students in higher level thinking skills through creative problem solving and personal expressions. Students will explore: scientific illustration, book illustration, editorial illustration, and fashion illustration through the use of color pencil rendering, pen and ink, digital imaging and marker rendering. Illustration is strongly encouraged for students interested in taking Studio Art and Advanced Placement Studio Art. Introduction to Drawing is a prerequisite.

Journalism

Journalism is an interdisciplinary, Art/English elective course in which students spend one semester learning the basics of journalism and one semester learning photo journalism, design and layout. Students will learn how to research information, and write and edit stories in AP style. In addition, students will learn InDesign, Photoshop and eDesign software. Honors level English must be taken concurrently. This is a required course for those students interested in writing and designing both the school newspaper and yearbook in Journalism II Honors and Journalism III Honors.

Journalism II Honors

This is a team-taught, interdisciplinary, project-based course in which students will collaborate, write news, editorials and feature. They will also learn and adapt creative approaches to advertise, edit, design and lay out the school newspaper and yearbook. Journalism Honors students will:

  • select and develop appropriate themes for “In-School” publications through peer collaboration 
  • recognize and demonstrate the elements of a newspaper/yearbook layout 
  • apply photojournalistic techniques 
  • create interesting compositional layout designs 
  • operate ‘Photoshop’, ‘In Design’ and eDesign software 
  • produce layouts and copy to meet publication deadlines 
  • develop and plan a public relations event to support overall sales of the yearbook 

As an honors level class, students are expected to adhere to a rigorous schedule that has specific deadlines determined by publishers. Expectations for these deadlines require strong organizational skills, the ability to communicate well with others and responsible decision making. Honors level English must be taken concurrently. Journalism II Honors is a prerequisite for Journalism III Honors.

Journalism III Honors

This is a team-taught, interdisciplinary, project-based course in which students will collaborate, write news, editorials and feature. They will also learn and adapt creative approaches to advertise, edit, design and lay out the school newspaper and yearbook. Journalism Honors students will:

  • select and develop appropriate themes for “In-School” publications through peer collaboration 
  • recognize and demonstrate the elements of a newspaper/yearbook layout 
  • apply photojournalistic techniques 
  • create interesting compositional layout designs 
  • operate ‘Photoshop’, ‘In Design’ and eDesign software 
  • produce layouts and copy to meet publication deadlines 
  • develop and plan a public relations event to support overall sales of the yearbook 

As an honors level class, students are expected to adhere to a rigorous schedule that has specific deadlines determined by publishers. Expectations for these deadlines require strong organizational skills, the ability to communicate well with others and responsible decision making. Honors level English must be taken concurrently.

Art History – Pre-Historic to the Renaissance

This survey course provides the student with an introduction to visual literacy. It integrates the study of aesthetics, art criticism, art history and art production. Students will learn how societies and cultures from Pre-Historic to the Renaissance have used the arts to express cultural values and interpret meaningful life experiences. Learning about art history fosters tolerance and respect for the ideas and opinions of others and provides students with an understanding of visual language. Fulfills the art history graduation requirement.

Art History – Renaissance to Post-Modern

This survey course provides the student with an introduction to visual literacy. It integrates the study of aesthetics, art criticism, art history and art production. Students will learn how societies and cultures from the Renaissance to Post-Modern have used the arts to express cultural values and interpret meaningful life experiences. Learning about art history fosters tolerance and respect for the ideas and opinions of others and provides students with an understanding of visual language. Fulfills the art history graduation requirement.

Studio Art

This course explores creative problem-solving through various fine art media and techniques, including drawing, painting, printmaking, computer imaging and sculpture. This course requires independent work in sketchbook/journal and long-term assignments. Introduction to Drawing and Introduction to Painting are prerequisites. This course is targeted for students who are serious about pursuing art in college and/or as a career choice. Studio Art is a prerequisite for AP Studio Art.

Photography I

This course provides students with a technical foundation in black and white film photography. Black and white skills include: how to operate a 35 mm film camera, and the processing of film and prints in a well-equipped darkroom. Included in this course is the use of digital cameras, scanners, and computers. It is recommended that students have access to a manually adjustable 35 mm camera. Extra time and effort is expected of the student.

Photography II

This course builds on the concepts and techniques introduced in Photography I. The focus of this course is to experience photography as an expressive medium learning alternative techniques and processes with both the black and white film camera and digital camera. Photography I is a prerequisite. Extra time and effort is expected of the student.

Computer Aided Drafting - AutoCAD LT

This course meets at Brother Rice High School.

This course will give students an introduction to the concepts in computer-aided drafting and design using AutoCAD LT software. Students will develop an understanding of the features and considerations associated with the computer as drafting/design tool. The course presents step-by-step instruction of AutoCAD commands, mode settings, drawing aides, shortcuts and other valuable characteristics of AutoCAD. The course concentrates on basic concepts and principles of technical drawing such as projection, size description, pictorial representation, techniques and tools.

Advanced Placement Art History

This course provides students with an opportunity to examine and critically analyze major historical periods of art. Students examine major forms of artistic expression from the past and present from a variety of cultures. AP Art History emphasizes understanding how and why works of art function in context, considering such issues as patronage, gender, and the functions and effects of art. Fulfills the Art History requirement. Students are required to take the Advanced Placement Exam in Art History at the end of our course.

Advanced Placement Studio Art

This course is aimed at the highly motivated junior or senior art student, who intends to pursue art on the post-secondary level and beyond, AP Studio Art addresses three major concerns that are constants in art: 1) a sense of quality in work, 2) a concentration on a particular visual interest or problem and 3) a breadth of experience in formal, technical and expressive means of the artist. This course is designed for students who are a seriously interested in the practical experience of art. AP Studio Art is not based on a written examination; instead the student submits a portfolio for evaluation at the end of the school year. This course requires independent work. Introduction to Drawing and Introduction to Painting and Studio Art are prerequisites. Students are required to submit an Advanced Placement portfolio at the end of the course.

Advanced Placement Studio Art 3-D Design

This course is designed for students interested in 3-D art and design and possible careers in product design, fine art studio production, furniture design, interior design or interior architecture. Students will explore in-depth studio experience to facilitate a strong body of 3-D artwork to be submitted to the College Board for Advanced Placement college credit, scholarships, and college opportunities. Students who receive high scores on their portfolios may receive college credit. Both Ceramics and Sculpture are prerequisites.
  • © Mother McAuley Liberal Arts H.S.
  • 3737 W. 99th Street
  • Chicago, IL 60655
  • Phone 773.881.6500
email page print page small type large type
powered by finalsite