As part of the 7th Grade Social Studies curriculum, I presented a two-day workshop at Davidson Middle School on Renaissance drawing techniques.
After discussing the apprenticeship system of artist training and the tools and techniques used by the dominant artists of the period, students chose a print by Michelangelo or Leonardo DaVinci to copy. This was one of the most common exercises a Master artist would give their apprentice!
We started by drawing a measured grid on colored charcoal paper, and then we copied the master drawings square-by-square to our drawing paper using charcoal and/or conte pencils. Students don’t need advanced drafting skills to do this…one just has to break down the images into lines and shapes, a little bit at a time. This process forces the draftsperson to observe very closely, and the students were surprised with the accuracy of their drawings!
Youth in Arts “Travel the World” programs provide professional arts instruction linked to K-8 History/Social Studies curriculum. Click here to download a flyer on programs you can bring to your school next year.