Durham Johnston Comprehensive School

Dare to be wise

'Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.' - Pablo Picasso

The work of artists and designers is an integral part of our lives, from the buildings in which we live, work and play, to the furniture on wihich we sit, the clothes we wear, and the cars we drive, to the packaged consumer goods in the supermarket and the choice of paintings and prints we choose to adorn our homes and workplace.

We are surrounded by the rich influence of art in every day life without even venturing into an art gallery.

From an early age a child has the natural urge to sculpt with sand, mud and even food. The mark making process begins with the most simplistic application of crayon to paper to form representational imagery that reflects themselves and the world they live in.

Early years teaching encourages development through play resulting in ‘Art’ that is intuitive and unique. As the child progresses from primary to secondary school their skills are enhanced by specialist art teachers who value the potential of art in our lives.

‘At Durham Johnston School we aim to provide an excellent provision in Art education. Our aim is to encourage and nurture potential talents of our students and, develop awareness and enrich their minds.’

-Sheila Hitchcock (Head of Department)





Further details (if relevant) e.g. assessment tasks




Introduction to Formal Elements and Visual language in Art and Design

Introduction to Art

Equipment list/expectations of work, behaviour etc.

What and where is Art? Importance of art in our lives? How many artists do you know?

Baseline assessment

Brief introduction to Formal elements

Observed analytical drawing (Line in pencil)

Analysis of painting

Van Gogh’s‘Room at Arles’. Comprehension – written response to questions.

(Homework : Creative Mehendi hand design)

Formal Elements

Line - Drawing with different media in line : Observation drawing e.g. leaves :Take line for walk

Mark making – different types of line.

Colour - Exploration of colour : Colour wheel : Practical application of colour : Food as a theme : e.g.Healthy eating-colour studies of fruit.

Sweets – observation drawing and painting /graphic design-packaging.

Form(shape) - Observed analytical drawing

* Introduction to artists’ work

Texture - Rubbings: Tactile texture boards

Collage(i) High relief texture board (pasta etc) (ii)Low relief Texture collage- Corrugated card/string/sandpaper/found textures

Printing - Rubbings/printing from collage

Observed drawing - Representation of textural qualities from texture boards – observed studies in pencil/fine liner etc

Abstract painting- Selected composition from studies of texture boards (A2) Painted in

flat local colour

* Introduction to artists work




Term 1

Baseline assessment

Bottles -observed analytical drawing in pencil

Same bottles – drawing skills taught

Still life arrangement

First hand response to collection of objects in still life arrangement

e.g. bottles/musical instruments/machine parts/toys

Use of broad application in both medium and scale

Development work

From any previous starting points develop a series of exercises based on observed drawings – e.g.

Select enlarged composition to paint : Create cubist abstract responses :Create assemblage piece on one of the objects : Develop graphic design response (packaging etc) : Exploration of ICT within art – digital imagery using micro media / photoshop)

Contextual Study

Contextual research integral throughout scheme of work

Term 2


Experimentation : Series of work linked to the work of Wassily Kandinsky-specifically to his paintings inspired by music.

Creative mark making/use of colour/range of materials to describe a selection of music visually.

Outcome (painting) : Students to produce major painting inspired by their choice of music. Painting skills and attention to detail considered.

Development work : 3D development from painting e.g. paper sculpture, mobile/slotted shapes


Arial and linear perspective : Observation drawing in Corridors/ classrooms : Perspective theory and application taught : Cityscapes drawn using one point and 2 point perspective.

Exploration of perspective using ICT

Contextual StudyContextual links to Architecture/architects

*Appropriate links between own working practice and the work of others.




Term 1

Introduction to figure drawing

Students to do drawing of standing figure, hands by side from memory.

(Discussion to follow pointing out typical errors –head too big/arms too short/ hands too small etc)

Baseline assessment

Observed analytical drawing

Observation drawingsof mannequins using line and form.

Figure drawing

Introduction to the figure in Art from contextual resources - anatomy/proportion and relevant artists e.g.Vitruvian man

Figure studies from observation with reference to previous knowledge from mannequin drawings.

Development work - Research into Marcel Duchamps Nude Descending a Staircase'

Development exploring abstraction of image through consideration of movement / repetition using mannequin or figure.

Costume/character design - Using croqui template of figure, students to design clothing inspired by fashion designers, computer game/film characters, historical costumes.

*Appropriate links between own working practice and the work of others.

Observed analytical drawing - Taught skills -first hand portraits of each other or self (using mirrors) in range of media and scale.

Drawing and painting exercises to explore and develop skills in using line (structure) and tone to create form within portraiture.

Squaring up technique

Inspired by the work of Chuck Close, students will be taught how to use the squaring up technique to produce an accurate self-portrait.

Distortion and manipulation

Observed self portraits using convex mirrors to distort shape and form using range of media.

Development from drawing to oil pastel e.g. taking an enlarged section from original drawing/cutting image up

(Exploration of ICT within art - manipulation of portraits using photoshop)

*Appropriate links between own working practice and the work of others.