Emily's Art Portfolio 2016-2017


My name is Emily Horton and I am a sophomore at Zeeland West. This is my first year taking an art class. I was extremely excited to be taking this beginner's class because I wanted to explore a more principled and guided path to art while expanding my creative abilities.

Elements Drawing

Contour Lines: Contour lines are an outline of an object and can be divided into many different styles but four types are prominent. Bold contour is created with darker lines that are continuous and steady to show the shape of the object. A pure contour line is much lighter but still has a solid flow of lines to portray the object. Broken contour is similar to a sketch with multiple markings to show the general shape of an object while allowing room for changes. Lastly, a lost and found contour is a broken up movement of the hand and utensil to show the basic direction in which the line is going while leaving the viewer to connect the lines in their mind.
Blind Contour: Blind contour is an important aspect to any type of art because it teaches an artist to use both sides of their brain. While doing a blind contour, the artist cannot look down at what they are creating. This forces them to record what they are actually seeing instead of what they THINK they are seeing. With blind contour, improvement comes with practice.
Upside Down Drawings: Upside down drawings are originally drawn from a different perspective to teach the artist to look at an object as a group of lines in relation to each other instead of as an object. The artist must look at the placement of a line to another line and look at the adjacent and shared spaces to determine how to correctly draw the image.


Scratchboard: With a scratchboard piece, the artist must use a variation of marks on a black paper to create different values. One type of marking is called cross hatching. In cross hatching, the blade crosses over to create a certain texture. With scratchboard, the artist can create many different textures such as the portrayal of fuzziness or a smooth finish. Scratchboard requres a lot of control and steadiness for small flicks of the hand and change from heavy to light pressure. Everything you create is permanent, so it takes practice to improve.

Before and After Hand Drawing

Before and After Hand Drawing: In my first hand drawing, I had more of a contour drawing than one with value. Value is the lights and darks of a piece that make it look realistic. In my first drawing, I did not focus on the relationships between the lines of an actual hand. I instead focused on what I thought a hand looked like and my final piece was fairly unrealistic and flat. However, in my second piece I included lots more value with bright whites and dark blacks. I also blended using a blending stump in certain places to create grays. I think overall, I improved most on my contour in my second piece because I was drawing from an actual picture which helped my accuracy of the shape and form.

Negative and poSitive Spaces

Negative and Positive Spaces: When drawing negative spaces, the artist has to focus on the shape of what is not actually there to accurately draw what IS there. The relationships and angles of the lines to each other is really important in these drawings because it shows the blank spaces. An artist should focus on the spaces in between what they see so that the contour looks right. This will also help the artist not to draw what they already know but what they actually see.

Conceptual Art

Conceptual Art: With this piece, value was very important. The ribbon of paper was white and the shadows were very dark so the values in between were especially important to correctly reflect the picture. In this piece, with the word "choose," I tried to emphasize the shadows to make my piece stand out. The contour was also very important because the paper from which I took the picture was arranged in a specific way. An incorrect contour could make the piece look flat or incorrect.


Profile: In this profile piece, I think the line and contour was true to the actual picture which helped create a realistic sense. For example, the proportions were calculated using the idea that the eye to the chin is the same distance as the top of the head to the ear and the ear to the eye. Although I had no ear in my profile, I used this technique on proportions to accurately draw the contour of my sister's face. Although there was no color in this drawing, I did use value quite a lot. One thing I could have done to improve this piece would have been to blend less. This would have helped the form of my piece and it also would have made it stand out more. Overall, I do think this profile looks like my sister but I definitely learned from some small issues with value and texture.


Stippling: In my stippling piece, I learned to use a series of dots to create an image with value and form. With this stippling of a violin, I had to use concentrated areas of dots using a harder pressure of the sharpie to create the darks in value. I used less dots and pressed lighter for the bright areas of the instrument. I could not erase during the making of this picture. My stippling work in the future will be better if I take more time and make sure the dots are even and identical to each other but also spread out enough to create actual values. For example, at the top of my piece, there are so many dots that the piece loses some of its value and is just black or white.

Two point perspective

Two Point Perspective: In a two point perspective piece, there are two vanishing points. Everything in the picture is drawn relative to the vanishing points. In my second drawing, the center of the picture is the edge of the door (vertical line). Everything to the left of the edge was drawn from the right vanishing point (off the page) and everything right of the edge was drawn from the left vanishing point (also off the page). A horizon line can be seen in a two point perspective. A horizon line is a straight horizontal line that connects the upper portion of the picture to the lower portion. Vertical lines in a two point perspective are always straight up and down but horizontal lines are drawn relative to the vanishing point.

Still life

Still Life: With my still life piece I think the most successful part was the value and form. Although my contour and line was not necessarily the most accurate, the lights and darks of the piece definitely helped it stand out. For example, looking at the top of the wooden man, I used my eraser in places to give the texture of wood. I also used an ebony pencil to create some shadows and dark lines in the figure. The form of the globe was successful because it looks like it is a round sphere. One thing I could have improved on was the flower at the bottom of the picture. The line and shape was inaccurate as well as the color. In real life, the flower was much lighter and the leaves were fewer. The leaves were also bigger and more spread out. The bowling pins in my piece had good form and value but the line and size was not accurate in relation to the other objects in my piece. I also think I could have done better on the wooden box on which everything stands. I think it looks flat and is too light with an inaccurate texture.

Before and after SELF PORTRAIT

Before and After Self Portrait: The most successful element in my second drawing was definitely value. The most successful element in my first drawing was line. I think in both of these pieces, the principle of balance was key. In my second piece I used shape and relative proportions to draw myself. For example, I used the technique that the eyes are in the middle of the face and the nose lines up with the tear ducts. I used the technique of placing the mouth 1/3 of the way between the nose and the chin. I also placed the mouth so that the edges lined up with the pupils of the eyes. Blending in the hair portion was important so that there weren't incredibly bright whites and dark blacks. I think my nose helped make this picture realistic because the proportions are correct in respect to the eyes and mouth. My forehead has a lot of white to match my skin tone, but I used grays for the various shadows in my picture, especially under my chin.

Closing Statement

This semester was a great experience in art for me. While taking this class, I struggled to change my pieces and techniques. I didn't want to do something different from what I was used to. Instead of staying the same in my creativity, I learned to use dark pencils and bright whites. I definitely learned how to create shape and form using line and value. I genuinely enjoyed just working on a piece and making it better while listening to music. I improved on almost all of the elements and principles of drawing this semester and I am incredibly happy that I decided to take this class.

Made with Adobe Slate

Make your words and images move.

Get Slate

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.