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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details


If Drawing is a form of seeing, what is the relationship between the final product and the act of drawing?: Issues for teaching and learning to draw.

Cynthia Boyle.

Drawing is not an arcane and magic art that a privileged few are party to although this may seem so to the uninitiated. The idea that drawing is more than just the visible product is not new. This paper reviews historical perspectives on the idea that drawing is a form of seeing which establishes the context for presenting the examples used in the argument. Teaching and learning to draw rely equally on recognising and understanding the processes and building a strong base of skills and knowledge.

Two ideas will be explored for their benefits to teaching and learning: One, that drawing is a form of seeing. And two, that the act of drawing is as important (and sometimes more so) than the finished drawing or product. A definition of drawing as product will be offered. An analysis of images and the motives for drawing them will be presented as case studies to define the relationship between the process of drawing and its visible outcome – the finished drawing. After presenting the case studies a list of issues for drawing education will be presented.


Cynthia Boyle  (Australia)
Lecturer in Design
The School of Design, Communication and IT
The University of Newcastle

Educated in USA
Migrated to Australia in 1969
Professional illustrator
Lecturer since 1987
Research interests:
Creative works as research
Drawing as a critical analysis tool
Communicating visual ideas with words

  • Drawing
  • Visual communication
  • Teaching and Learning

(30 min Conference Paper, English)