What to do Before You Submit: Advice to AP Studio Students

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What to do Before You Submit: Advice to AP Studio Students

Shahadah Tobias, Staff Writer

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AP studio art is the most advanced art class offered at Paint Branch. The exam for this course is quite different from those in other AP content areas in that it requires students to submit, digitally, two dozen pieces and writing a strong artist’s statement that explains the students concentration and the decisions they made to interpret it, as opposed to answering multiple choice and open ended questions.

The first tip when submitting for the exam is planning out your pieces beforehand. Twenty-four pieces of artwork are required for submission, so you’ve got a pretty broad scope of your work. Half of the pieces are known as breadth pieces, which give artists the opportunity to show their technical ability, how well they can work in multiple mediums, and provides them the chance to experiment with different subject matters in their artwork and mediums in order to show that they are a well rounded artist. The other half of your submitted pieces is the concentration, a section where the artist creates twelve pieces around a central, cohesive concept. These pieces can be in the same medium or a collection of multiple mediums such as charcoal, ink, paint, and oil pastels.

The last step in the process is the quality pieces. Five out of the twenty four pieces will be mailed to the graders of the exam; these are known the quality pieces because they are the best in technique or execution. The artist along with the help of their art teacher chooses the five best pieces that excel in technique and subject matter.

Procrastination is not key when it comes to the AP art exam. Depending on the size of a piece and how detailed it is, a drawing can take as little as a day to as long as two weeks. Every artist works at a different pace, so this timing can vary. Prolonging the drawing process will make finishing the twenty-four pieces unbearable and take the fun out of it. Some teachers keep a schedule for the AP students where they have to make a certain number of pieces a week in order to have enough pieces when it’s time to submit. At Paint Branch, Mrs. Cooper is the only AP Studio Art teacher; she works with the AP students and does weekly check-ins to see our progress for that week. Some artists are destined to experience some all-nighters because the deadline for submission comes too quickly and they have to bear down.

The artist statement is a crucial part of the process as well as it requires the artist to explain their concentration and the choices they made in their breadth pieces.
The final and most important tip for the submission process in my opinion is creating art that genuinely interests you and that you can be proud to submit.

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