Fall 2016 quarter

Taught by

ceramics, visual arts


Students should have a solid base of skills in representational drawing.

This is an intensive visual arts program for students who have a good background in representational drawing, who are passionate about the natural world, and who are eager to learn more about it. How have past artists, philosophers, and scientists understood and depicted the physical world? How are contemporary artists reinterpreting and reshaping our fundamental relationship to the environment and to other species? What is the role of the artist in a time of environmental crisis? Through readings, lectures, seminars, and intensive studio work, we will examine these questions. Individually, we will take the approach of artist/naturalists and delve deeply into an exploration of one or more species, ecosystems, or natural processes that intrigue us. Program activities will include skill workshops in painting (watercolor, gouache, and acrylics) and scientific illustration, lectures, seminars, individual research, and thematic studio work. Each student will create a body of images that expresses his/her research into and personal vision of an aspect of nature.

In the first weeks of the quarter each student will present a proposal for an in-depth, individual field study of a site, organism, natural process, or system. During week six, each student will conduct a field study at a site either on- or off-campus in the U.S. In week eight, students will present their field research and creative work to the program. 

Students will need to commit at least 40 hours per week to their program work and must be willing to work in close quarters in the studio on campus. Students will be asked to regularly present work and to engage in critical assessment, dialog, research, and writing. 

Program Details

Fields of Study

field studies visual arts

Preparatory For

painting, drawing, scientific illustration, and the visual arts.


Fall Open

Location and Schedule

Campus Location


Time Offered


Advertised Schedule

First class meeting: Tuesday, September 27 at 9am (Art Annex 2104)

Online Learning

No Required Online Learning

Special Expenses

Students who choose to travel a significant distance from campus for the field study should plan to cover travel and living costs personally.


$50 for common studio supplies to be available to students for creating artworks.


2016-05-11This program is now offered fall quarter (not spring).