Portfolio Preparation Online: Drawing for High School and Transfer Students (Online)

The portfolio is the single most important component of an art school application. Most colleges require several observational drawings, or drawings made from what we see, rather than from our imagination or a photograph. This online drawing class is designed to help motivated visual arts students develop exemplary observational drawings for their portfolios. Students work with still life, landscape, interior, and figurative subject matter as they explore the fundamentals of a drawing: composition, line, structure, value, and expression. Instruction in drawing techniques will be supplemented by video demonstration, master and contemporary images, critique information and requirements for art and design school admissions, and regular homework assignments. This class is ideal for students interested in applying to art school who do not live near, or are able to participate in, a face-to-face portfolio preparation class. Students should expect to spend 6-8 hour per week on course work. / Open to students ages 15 and above. MCAD strictly adheres to these age guidelines and is unable to allow exceptions. / View complete policies. Please read complete summer camp information and policies before completing your registration.

This course is asynchronous, meaning that there are no set class meeting times. Instead, the course is project-based, with 2 to 3 deadlines per week, and students can choose a time and place that works best for them to complete the work. Course activities may include readings; video demonstrations and tutorials; online discussions; projects; and critiques.

Prerequisites: Previous drawing and painting experience helpful, but not required.

Required supplies for the first day: Sketchbook; graphite pencils (various value F ~ 2B or more); drawing pads (such as Strathmore, 18" x 24" or larger); newsprint pad (18" x 24"); compressed charcoal; willow or vine charcoal; kneaded eraser; art gum eraser; exacto knife or utility knife; ruler cardboard or matte board 4" x 6"; drawing board or something that can be a support when you draw; masking tape; portfolio folder (DIY possible). Supplies will cost approximately $50.

Required textbook: See for a list of required textbooks.

Required hardware: Digital camera or scanner or scanning app

Please Register Before: June 30
If the minimum enrollment is not met by the deadline above, the class will be canceled on this date.
Registration will remain open after this date if the minimum enrollment has been met.
Class Savings
Register for more than one class at a time and receive $25 off each additional class (same-day registrations only). Questions?
Contact MCAD Continuing Education at or call 612.874.3765.

Course Details

CST 9570 20 SU21
Date Start: 
Monday, July 5, 2021
Date End: 
Sunday, August 8, 2021
Age Group: 
Age Requirement: 
Open to students ages 15 and above.
Days of Week: 
Pre-College Portfolio Preparation Ages 15-18
Pre-College Classes Ages 15-18
Drawing and Painting
Previous drawing and painting experience helpful, but not required.