• Offered by School of Art and Design
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Classification Transitional
  • Course subject Visual Arts
  • Areas of interest Visual Arts, Design Arts, Creative Arts
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course

With a focus on drawing the human form in a studio environment, Figure & Life enables students to develop an understanding of the principles of observational drawing. Relevant to students with any level of experience and from all visual arts and design disciplines, this course introduces a range of skills and concepts to support future specialised practice-led research. Each week students are presented with different tasks and approaches to seeing and drawing the human body by identifying space, shape, form, line, gesture, expression, movement, colour, tone and composition. The experience of drawing is broadened by testing a variety of drawing mediums and techniques through haptic exploration. In class students build up a substantial portfolio of work and gain confidence through independent drawing practice. A deeper knowledge of drawing in context of historical and contemporary art and design practices is furthered through weekly tutorial slide presentations and critical reflections. This course supports postgraduate coursework students who wish to advance their skills in drawing and further develop visual literacy and haptic knowledge in order to undertake future independent practice-led research.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. identify and apply a range of processes and approaches to seeing and drawing the human form from life;
  2. demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the principles of observational drawing in context of historical and contemporary practices in the visual arts and design;
  3. competently utilise a variety of drawing mediums and techniques to explore space, shape, form, line, gesture, movement, colour, tone and composition;
  4. apply observational drawing skills and development of conceptual ideas to create a resolved independent drawing project; and
  5. demonstrate visual literacy through practice-led research, verbal discussion and written critical reflection.

Other Information

All classes are expected to be attended in person as there are no recording of lessons online. Classes are delivered in a studio environment using professional life models. This course is fun, challenging and rewarding.

School of Art & Design studio courses have a limited enrolment capacity. Students are advised to enrol as early as possible to maximise the opportunity of securing a place.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Portfolio of studio work (50) [LO 1,2,3,5]
  2. Independent drawing project (30) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
  3. Critical reflection, 600 words (10) [LO 2,5]
  4. Participation (10) [LO 1,3,5]

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


130 hours of total student learning time made up from: a) 48 hours of contact over 12 weeks: lectures, tutorials, critiques and supervised studio practice; and b) 82 hours of independent studio practice, reading and writing.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

You are not able to enrol in this course if you are enrolled in, or have previously completed, ARTV1020 or ANUC1123.

Prescribed Texts

Not applicable

Assumed Knowledge

No previous knowledge or skill in drawing required. Recommended to students of all levels of experience.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

There are no current offerings for this course.

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