Portfolio Class- Lesson Sharing

Portfolio Preparatory Course
(10 to 12 yrs old)

Lesson Sharing by Teacher Wina


The Portfolio Preparatory Course is for those who intend to apply Visual Art DSA to their secondary school of choice or SOTA. This programme will guide the students in the creation of a portfolio of works for submission, as well as preparation for the audition or interview, and other tests that include on-the-spot drawing and creative response.

Portfolio students are encouraged to create works that showcase a keen observation and technical proficiency in various mediums, as well as thematic works that show their conceptual ability and compositional skill. Here’s a sample work process by an ex-portfolio student, Han Ju.


1st Stage: The topic I gave Han Ju was “hands”. I showed her how to draw hand anatomy with simple guidelines, and to emphasise the joints. She then practiced a couple of hands drawings on her sketchbook. I got her to use her own hand as reference and to try various angles and poses.


2nd Stage: After the hand studies, I told Han Ju to interpret “hands” in her own way. I prompted her with some questions- what is the hand doing, what are our hands capable of, what issues can you link to hands. Han Ju is very fond of animals and we went on to discuss about animal poaching and how our hands can be so merciless in the slaughter of these animals. She took photos of her own hand in the shape of a gun as reference for the final artwork.


3rd Stage: In the process of creating a thematic art, it is imperative that the student does her research and understand the topic better. Han Ju researched on animals that are commonly hunted, she eventually decided to use animals that were hunted to extinction in her final artwork.


4th Stage: After trying out some quick compositions in her sketchbook, Han Ju proceeded to transferring the final composition to an A3 paper. After doing a part of the drawing, we decided that it seems a little plain, hence we came up with the idea to splatter some paint on the background as if they were blood splatters. However, red colour seems too strong, so we tone it down to brown.


5th Stage: Han Ju continued to shade the rest of the drawing. She had to repeatedly darken some parts of the drawing so it will stand out against the splatter background. Sometimes, in the art process, one idea leads to another. Here, we started with “hands” and ended up with a drawing that reflects the tragedy caused by our human hands. Han Ju has successfully displayed her technical proficiency with pencil drawing and expressed her empathy for wild animals in her artwork.


The Portfolio programme not only guides the student in the preparation of their portfolio, it is also our wish to see the students leaning to express their unique voice and ideas through art. For that, the students have to first build their foundational skill in drawing and painting at the early stage, hence we recommend that they start as early as Primary 4. Find out more here: http://artgrain.com.sg/artgrain_programs/portfolio-preparatory-art/


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