May 29, 2024  
Traditional Undergraduate Catalog 2019-2020 
Traditional Undergraduate Catalog 2019-2020 Archived Catalog

Department of Visual Arts

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Holland (department head)


The mission of the John Brown University Department of Visual Arts is to equip students with the intellectual and practical abilities required of a visual communication professional. These abilities are equally conceptual and technical.

This is a field that involves the Head, Heart, and Hand. The Department of Visual Arts strives to give students an equal emphasis on concept and technique with an overarching set of values that integrates it all.

In each of our majors the ability to think creatively and solve problems in innovative ways is a critical skill to develop. Visual artists must be thinkers, not simply decorators. On the other hand, successful careers are not possible for students who have great ideas but have not learned the critical techniques for making those ideas reality. Visual artists must also have skills in their chosen media.

Student Learning Outcomes:

While specific skill sets vary from one media to the next, there are four common student learning outcomes:

  1. Students will demonstrate the ability to generate creative, innovative, problem-solving ideas.
  2. Students will demonstrate the ability to practice their media at a high level.
  3. Students will understand the professional practices in their field.
  4. Students will prepare a body of work that demonstrates their ability to think and create.

The Department of Visual Arts offers the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree with majors in Art and Illustration, Digital Cinema, Graphic Design, Photography, and Visual FX, and minors are available in all five areas.

All major programs require a common Visual Arts core of 15 hours and an additional 36 hours in the specialized field.

The Department of Visual Arts is housed in two state-of-the-art buildings featuring the latest equipment in two MAC labs, a theatre-style classroom, painting and drawing classrooms, graphic design classrooms, photography studios, a screenprinting/printmaking studio, two traditional darkrooms, and a digital darkroom. Visual Arts also has two busy art galleries that feature monthly exhibits, including an annual show of “Student Works.”

All of the Visual Arts degrees are highly demanding of student time, energy, and talent. The goal of these multifaceted programs is to graduate industry-ready professionals who are prepared to step into positions which demand diverse proficiencies. All students participate in either an internship or senior project and prepare a portfolio to further aid them in their professional development. Our students are strongly encouraged to participate in foreign study and mission opportunities as a way to broaden their understanding of our world and to enrich their Christian worldview.

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