Preparing for an Arts Class in Central Texas: An Expert's Guide

The Fine Arts department at Central Texas University offers a range of courses for undergraduate and certification programs, as well as self-improvement courses. Located in the Lady Bird Johnson Fine Arts Center, the specialized space includes indoor and outdoor study work areas, a state-of-the-art conference room with multimedia capabilities, a computer graphics laboratory, a piano keyboard laboratory, a musical rehearsal room, piano practice rooms and an auditorium with theatrical light and sound production systems and two grand pianos for concerts. Programs in these areas prepare students for a wide range of careers in communications, fine art, graphic design and more. Many of these careers are fast-growing and some programs can lead to immediate entry into the workforce or transfer to complete the requirements of a higher-level degree.

The first-year basic study class focuses on the creation of flat works and the exploration of formal principles and conceptual concerns. Course projects will allow students to visualize and understand flat works in a contemporary context. The same applies to spatial works and time-based media, with course projects allowing students to gain awareness about media, art and digital technology. ART 346K Intermediate Life Drawing is an introduction to the basics of black and white photography (26%).

Students will learn to use a medium format manual camera, how to expose and develop a black film with 26% white and how to make gelatin silver prints. They will also study aspects of the history of photography and begin to define their individual voice as an artist using photography. During the first part of the semester, tasks will be assigned to challenge the way students think and make images, both technically and conceptually. The second half of the semester's tasks are designed to allow for greater self-interpretation.

The final task is to develop a personal project consisting of 20 cohesive images. Class time will be spent on lectures and discussions with slides, group critiques, printing in class, supervised time in a darkroom, and field trips. ART 330P Art 376P Advanced Print Workshop Contemporary Printed Themes is an exploration of fanzines, their purposes and motivations behind the artistic practice of making artist books in our modern era. Students will mainly use risography, linoleum printing and polymer plate technology to create their projects, incorporating digital methods and alternative media in their process to develop their own perspective.

Inspired by examples from book history, world traditions, the power of printing, punk and science fiction culture, students will explore the history of books, fanzines and publications by artists as criticism or social protest. This course expands traditional engraving techniques with a deep focus on aquatint, chine-colé, dry tip, hard ground and soft ground. Students will investigate the possibilities of digital printing methods by creating computerized drawings that will be developed on photopolymer plates. They will also study modern advances in the media through demonstrations and practical instructions framed around the history of printing and multiplying, production, publication and popular culture. Getting ready for an arts class at Central Texas University requires commitment and focus on your photography or art form as well as class requirements.

With this guide you can gain knowledge about the tools available for digital photography or engraving processes while exploring contemporary contexts for flat works or time-based media.

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