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teachign design

updated thu 23 sep 99 on wed 22 sep 99

Mel - Well you certainly opened a kettle of fish, some will think it
stinks and others wil relish the smell. I've just begun my 23rd year of
teaching ceramics, drawing and fundamentals of design at the community
college level. I've come to the conclusion that I can teach "about"
design, but one learns design through years of looking, absorbing,
discarding until one developes their own esthetic - then has enough
sense to keep learning and growing.
In drawing we teach about observation, most of academic drawing is
observation. Design elements are integrated into this learning
experience. The design courses stress art elements and the conceptual
melding of these elements to create a whole, a unity. In ceramics, much
of the time is spent with technique and skill development. Design seems
to often take a back seat because so much time is spent on the craft
end. But we do get to design and I encourage all of my students to also
study drawing & design. So many design concepts are cross platform
between drawing, design & ceramics.
A couple of years is so little time for minds to soak up all this
stuff, and then apply the theory! Most of my students who go on to
further study come back and say (so far without exception), "now I
understand waht you were talking about".