"Everything Comes to Light...."

RI Arts GSE: Visual Arts & Design Enduring Understanding 1 Creative Processes

GSEs for Gr 9-12 HS Extensions VAD 1: Students demonstrate knowledge and application of Visual Art and Design concepts by applying a variety of selected VAD concepts in a series of two- or three-dimensional works of art, and interpreting and evaluating the effects.

Because Literacy in the Arts depends upon development and demonstration of understandings and capacities similar to the Common Core State Standards for Reading, the College and Career Readiness Anchor Standard for Reading is cited below. The field trip to a gallery or museum may be experienced as a "text" to be "read," with meaning to be identified or derived. The meaning derived from the visual art may be used above as inspiration for new work by students in the arts. Domain specific depth of knowledge in the field of visual art & design such as vocabulary and concepts regarding the effect of light in art, or on the presentation of visual art will be helpful.

CCSS: CCR Anchor Standards for Reading: Integration of Knowledge and Ideas 7. Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse formats and media, including visually and quatitatively, as well as in words. (Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects, p. 35; 2010).


19th Century English novelist George Eliot offers insight into truth and revelation by invoking the imagery of light and exposure in her novel Silas Marner by reminding readers that “Everything comes to light…sooner or later….” Every arts medium explores or employs the qualities of light in presenting and making meaning of creative and imaginative expressions. Poets consider “how (their) light is spent,” but photographers have the power to capture ambient light as it bathes their subjects in a moment that will never be repeated in precisely the same way.

Methods / Materials: 
  1. Attend a museum or gallery show field trip.
  2. Make note of the ambient light, the nature of its design, or the features of natural lighting such as time of day, direction of exposure, impact of weather on lighting. (Please note: It is not likely that you will be allowed to photograph works of art or museum interiors.)
  3. Choose several works of art and think about, and make note of how the available lighting influences your reaction to the art.
  4. Inspired by the art you saw and using technology of your choice, photograph a series of subjects using ambient light only.
  5. Compose written introductions to the images in your original series that discuss light as you experienced it in the museum/gallery works. Compare and contrast use of light in your own photographs with your museum experience.
  6. Prepare a display of your images and written reflections or introduction statements for each of your phtographs (number of images to be determined by teacher and student).
Time to Complete: 

Students should plan to extend their work on this task over a two-week period or as advised by instructor.

Task Type:

Depth of Knowledge: