KS3 Art Lesson – Continuous Line Drawings

This continuous line drawing activity was a starter which introduced new keywords: Abstract and Expressive. It taught students that they can create drawings which aren’t ‘life like’ and focused on improving students’ observational skills.

Continuous line drawing art lesson

Get this Continuous Line Drawing lesson here.

The art students had already tried continuous line drawings in a previous art lesson, but only briefly, so I expanded the idea and turned this into a full lesson which includes a range of drawing activities (for students to work on their own and in pairs). The continuous line drawings can be of any objects, however I chose natural forms with unusual shapes and sizes to make sure students were really looking at the object and not making it up.

1. Show the work of Claude Heath. I used his blind drawings and asked the students a series of questions and to work in pairs to write 2/3 words to describe his work. [This worked well but some students really struggled to think of 3 words. The most common used were ‘messy’ and ‘3D’]

2. Show the class my own descriptive words. I chose ‘Abstract‘, ‘Expressive‘ and ‘Playful‘. [The class discussed these for a few minutes and asked me to explain the meaning of Abstract more]

3. Introduce the first drawing tasks and use timers to keep up the pace of the lesson. Reiterate that for a continuous line drawing, students can’t take the pen off the paper, and for the blind drawing, students can’t look at the paper.

Create 1 drawing in 3 minutes using pen. Do not take your pen off the paper.
Create 1 drawing in 3 minutes using pencil (without looking at your paper!)
5 minutes: Work in pairs. One person keeps the pen still on the paper, the other moves to paper to create the drawing.

4. Ask students to review their work using keywords identified at the start of the lesson.

Continuous line drawing examples art lesson review

5. Do a ‘live’ continuous line drawing example for the class. Ask them to gather around to watch. Spend 6 minutes drawing in continuous line, then 6 without looking at the page and ask one student to keep time. Ask the class to countdown when there are only 10 seconds left. Talk through each step of the drawing, enforcing the idea that students must look very carefully at the object.

6. Explain that students will improve on their first drawing by spending more time on them. Ask the students to get ready to start drawing. [I used a ‘bomb’ countdown timer which exploded after 5 minutes and the class really enjoyed it! It made them excited to start their second drawing and highlighted that they only had a limited time to draw as much as possible.]

Continuous line drawing and blind drawing activities

7. After both continuous line and blind drawings are done, ask students to write the descriptive words on each drawing using a continuous line. [I could have made this clearer, as some students wrote words like ‘Dreadful’ to describe their work… Ha!]

Continuous line drawing lesson plenary activity

This is the slideshow I used with the class – what do you think? Do you have any ideas you would add to the lesson or anything you’d change? Please let me know!

Here’s some of the outcomes by the students:

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Found on theartteacher.net

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