Denver Botanic Gardens’ Foundational Certificate in Botanical Art and Illustration

PORTFOLIO REVIEW


Guidelines for students wishing to complete the Portfolio Review for the Foundational
Certificate in Botanical Art and Illustration

After completing all required coursework as outlined in the document attached, Certificate candidates will prepare and present a portfolio of finished botanical artwork for review by two off-site specialists.

Please follow and check off the guidelines below as you begin to prepare your portfolio.

___ 1. Complete all coursework (15 required courses + minimum of 100 elective credit hours)

___ 2. Request a copy of your transcript from the Manager of the School of Botanical Art and Illustration (720-865-3653, mervihj@botanicgardens.org).


Preparing Your Foundational Portfolio - Guidelines for students

The complete portfolio will contain five (5) finished botanical plates as follows:

1                    Graphite
2                    Colored Pencil
3                    Pen and Ink
4                    Watermedia
5                    Artists choice: This can be a plate in any of the media taught within the program or  a combination of them.

As you select plates to include in your portfolio, remember that the Portfolio Review is an opportunity to present your highest level of work in each medium.  Please demonstrate your best efforts in composition, scientific accuracy, artistic ability, and accurate scientific labeling.  Though some of your plates may have been started or completed during classes, you are encouraged to include work done independently as well.
Your artwork is the focus of the Review.
If you have any questions about the Review process, please contact the School Manager, Mervi Hjelmroos-Koski at 720-865-3653 or Mervihj@botanicgardens.org. If you have questions about a particular medium or if you would like to schedule a time to preview your work with the appropriate instructor, please contact the instructor directly.

Use these checklists to review your work as you prepare for the Portfolio Review.  
All plates:
___ Ground is appropriate and clean, with no smudges, obvious erasures, bent or torn edges.
___ Drawing of all subjects is scientifically accurate.
___ Form development is complete and includes a full range of values from light to dark.
___ Light source is clear and understandable. Highlights are appropriate to the shape and texture of the plant subject and are consistent throughout the work.
___ Depth overlaps, and atmospheric perspective are clear and effective.

1. Graphite
The completed plate will be executed in graphite, carbon pencil, Ebony pencils, carbon dust or a combination of these media. It must be labeled correctly with the scientific name of the plant, including genus and species. The label may be on the plate or presented separately.

___ Tonal areas demonstrate smooth and continuous changes. 

___ Line demonstrates appropriate weight and modeling.

___ Detail is accurately rendered and well understood.

2. Colored Pencil
The completed plate will be executed in colored pencil, which may included wax or oil pencils. It must be labeled correctly with the scientific name of the plant, including genus and species. The label may be on the plate or presented separately.
___ Colors are accurate to the subject and demonstrate effective color layering with smooth application and color transitions.
___ Form is well represented in color with accurate hue and tonal changes.
___ Texture accurately represented with appropriate hue and tonal changes.

3. Pen and Ink
The completed plate will be executed in Pen and Ink including line, eyelashing, snodgrassing and stipple. It must be labeled correctly with the scientific name of the plant, including genus and species. The label may be on the plate or presented separately.
___ Line quality is clean and even, with smooth line width transitions when using snodgrassing and eyelashing. Contour and modeling lines are used accurately.
___ Stipple (and any other techniques which include scumbling and mixed strokes) are used effectively to portray form and texture.  Stipple is produced with appropriate dot size, round shape and clear spacing. 

4. Watermedia
The completed plate will be executed in watercolor, gouache or transparent acrylics.  It must be labeled correctly with the scientific name of the plant, including genus and species. The label may be on the plate or presented separately.
___ Color is accurate to subject and demonstrates effective color mixing. 
___ Transitions and integration of color is apparent and well modulated. 
___ Hard and soft edges are used effectively to portray texture and form. Hard edges should be 
clean and crisp.
___ Form development is complete and includes a full range of values.

5. Artists Choice
This is your opportunity to select another piece in a favorite medium or to combine media for a new effect. You will still want to meet the highest possible standard with this piece. It must be labeled correctly with the scientific name, including genus and species. The label may be on the plate or presented separately.
___ Color or tone is accurate to subject.
___ Medium is used well, with smooth application, well managed transitional areas, and accurate hue and tonal changes needed for form.
___ Texture is well represented with accurate tone/color, form and detail.