Portrait Painting – Engaging with a studio based fine art painting practice in the classroom
This project focuses on the artist-teacher and how their professional artistic and educational practice can be combined in the classroom for the benefit of the student and used effectively to create an environment that promotes student understanding and learning.
Students engaged with the professional portrait artist Ciaran Power at the beginning of this project via a video link discussion. This artist discussion was vital in preparing the students for the painting phase by opening the door to the creative possibilities of painting. This provided first-hand knowledge of skills and techniques helping students gain confidence in both their ability and the project.
Throughout the project I modelled my own painting practice in the classroom. I painted alongside the students creating my own portrait painting as a tool for providing detailed demonstrations to assist their understanding and application of painting techniques. By doing this an environment as like a professional artist studio was cultivated within the classroom. This environment was relaxed and inviting for the student and support peer learning through autonomous dialogue and critique. Within the studio classroom students created portrait photographs, studied the tone and textures of the face, and applied different skills and techniques of painting while creating individual self-portrait acrylic paintings on board.