Assessment Report

Level 3 Visual Arts 2021

Standards 91455  91456  91457  91458  91459

Part A: Commentary

91455:  Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within design

For this standard, candidates are required to produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas. This involves bringing conventions together to revisit ideas from their previous work in order to re-form and extend ideas into new work.

Candidates who developed a proposal or situation that had a connection to them – whether it was a cause, interest, or belief – were the most successful as they were situated within an original and authentic context. 

The majority of the work was well-edited and printed at an appropriate scale, which strengthened the readability of the portfolios holistically. Candidates showed purpose when they edited and selected work between the concept, development and clarification phases. High-performing candidates’ decision-making was purposeful and reductive, ensuring unsuccessful work was omitted.

Candidates who generated and collated sufficient content to ensure an in-depth understanding of their topic were able to demonstrate a fluent command of graphic design conventions.


91456: Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within painting

For this standard, candidates are required to produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas. This involves bringing conventions together to revisit ideas from their previous work in order to re-form and extend ideas into new work.

Candidate’s access to subject matter was key to success. Landscape or still life have a long history to draw upon. The significance of land in Aotearoa, or the personal stories behind significant objects in a still life, provided rich opportunities for many in the classroom as well as being easily accessible to use at home.

Candidates who demonstrated a genuine ownership of a proposition showed a level of engagement which enabled production to be sustained over the year. Such sustained production reflected the large number of boards which appeared to be part of larger bodies of work, edited down and refined during the year. This process allowed for fluency in skills to be acquired.

Candidates who employed the intelligent use of small series of developmental work across boards showed that such practice both supported the progression of their work and provided greater evidence around their level of decision-making skills.

High-performing candidates demonstrated the assured use of sophisticated colour palettes as well as an increasing dominance of the human figure as subject matter through their portfolio using a wide range of artistic approaches.

 


91457:  Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within photography

For this standard, candidates are required to produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas. This involves bringing conventions together to revisit ideas from their previous work in order to re-form and extend ideas into new work.

Candidates who performed well were able to revisit subject matter and/or expand their subject matter connected to their concepts, whether it was site-based or required set ups. Accessibility to what a candidate is wanting to photograph is critical and must provide the ability to revisit to enable further photoshoots.

Successful candidates also presented practical research to inform the development and expansion of their proposition. Candidates gained higher levels of achievement when they presented sequences of photographs where one idea expanded on from the next. This allowed for more steps to be taken, which led to the higher levels of decision making required.

Some candidate propositions had personal connections. Development of these propositions were handled genuinely and insightfully, enabling the candidate to extend ideas in depth as they appeared so deeply invested. It is important that candidates embark on concepts that are relevant to their lives as the proposition needs to sustain momentum for the duration of the year.

 


91458:  Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within printmaking

For this standard, candidates are required to produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerate ideas. This involves bringing conventions together to revisit ideas from their previous work in order to re-form and extend ideas into new work.

Successful candidates demonstrated deep thinking, intelligent decision-making, and refined printmaking skills. The depth of learning and quality of output, both technically and conceptually, was perhaps reflective of the hugely popular printmaking workshops at the 2021 National Art Education ANZAAE conference. 

High performing candidates demonstrated advanced levels of reflection and analysis which are key in driving and extending ideas. Those who showed absolute ownership of ideas and combined elements from a range of researched artists’ works, as opposed to mimicking established practice, created authenticity and originality, resulting in innovative work.

 


91459: Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within sculpture

For this standard, candidates are required to produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerate ideas. This involves bringing conventions together to revisit ideas from their previous work in order to re-form and extend ideas into new work.

Candidates who explored sculptural activity within their personal domestic environment were able to develop ideas that were conceptually appropriate for the locations and materials available to them. They utilised drawing in three dimensions to advance sculptural ideas and thinking with easily available materials and processes. Clear and logical photographic documentation of sculptural works assisted candidates to demonstrate scale and context.

Candidates who engaged in thorough research of established sculptural practice presented work that positioned itself clearly within the broader tradition of contemporary and or traditional sculptural practice. Ideas of identity or personal challenges were often explored with reference to appropriate contemporary and traditional sculptural practice. 

Higher achieving candidates understood the need to edit documentation using labelling to describe succinctly what had happened in time-based work. They also described how the intent of their performance or kinetic work departed from what they had initially intended. This allowed for intelligent next steps in the development of work.

Candidates who started their sculptural activity with highly resolved ideas were limited in their ability to re-form and extend their ideas.

Part B: Report on standards

91455:  Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within design

Examinations 

As outlined in the assessment specifications, candidates were required to present a portfolio of individual candidate-led evidence for assessment, consisting of either a three-panel portfolio (folio board) or a moving-image submission, representing the requirements of the standard.

Observations 

Folios were image-rich. Many moving-image and folio board submissions highlighted the impact and engagement that character- and narrative-based media has on secondary-school candidates. Image-making is a critical component of visual language and it is clear that drawing and media exploration is being fostered that supports a range of aesthetic and graphic sensibilities.

Candidates explored a range of drawing modalities to generate their own source imagery. Candidates whose work was at the higher end of the standard staged and directed multiple shoots, and these resulted in better editorial outcomes. The integration of photoshoots to elicit and expand on ideas relating to briefs showed a genuine ownership of source material and asset development.

Overall, candidates made informed decisions about where they sourced their imagery. Self-generated imagery is strongly encouraged; the setting up of studio shoots, 3D arrangements explore image, and sculptural-based starting points provided a strong foundation for many candidates, as did the mixing of disciplines with printmaking and photographic processes which showcased strengths in illustration. Montage / collage juxtapositions tested quick-fire ways to approach text and image compositions. 

Board One is significant for the way it sets up the proposition, frames intention and topic, offers insights into purpose, and locates an audience. The ‘Drawing In’ phase enables an opportunity to showcase a drawing resource and image bank that reveals visual cues related to topic and media. Candidates should label their own work when it comes to self-created photographs, textures, illustrations, type generation etc., to distinguish this from a collated mood board. Evidence of artist models on the folio is not required. Research is alluded to through candidates' use and exploitation of conventions and contexts presented on the portfolio. 

Candidates who authored narrative content for storybooks, comics, and graphic novels set themselves apart and were acknowledged for the development of content. This is similarly the case for animation, character development and branding / campaign-based projects that demand ‘call to action’ copywriting. Copywriting to develop authentic content is strongly encouraged as a strategy (writing, descriptions, strap lines, headings, subheading, body text, pull-out quotes) to advance final phases of development. 

Candidates who developed characters knowing the overarching context and narrative they were being designed for were advantaged, especially when the ‘uber’ narrative was clear, achievable and well-articulated. In some scenarios character designs stayed derivative of artists’ models, which limited the candidate’s ability to demonstrate purpose or understanding. Candidates who were able to generate a range of options and perspectives, displaying a range of gestures and expressions through different viewpoints and perspectives, were rewarded. The development of site, scenarios, text, and props to utilise time-based conventions is required. 

Class programmes, where there is one brief for the cohort, are discouraged. Templated layout placement and an over-reliance on shared resources limits the opportunities for candidates to achieve at a higher level. Candidates that forge an individual inquiry locate genuine directions and have a higher chance of synthesising ideas in unanticipated ways. This ownership and inventiveness of ideas and sub-briefs can develop out of content.

Moving-image submissions

The moving-image format is best suited to candidates engaged in interactive or time-based work that requires motion and moving images. Some submissions were still largely graphical, with little if any moving image component, and these would be best presented as a traditional folio.

Successful submissions showed how the digital assets were made without labouring the point, and allotted time to the overarching concepts and purpose of the project. If the topic was aligned with game design, the intention of the game was established, characters identified, and the narrative, setting, purpose, and game interface were developed. Projects need to be manageable in scope, particularly when technologies and new processes are being advanced and learnt.

An array of technologies, software, and methods were selected and developed by candidates based on the nature of their project. High-performing candidates led with strong narratives and ideas, rather than relying on singular tropes or technical skills without regard for story or message. 

The order the submission was shown in indicated the different phases of production and conventions applied, and this assisted in the move towards a final sequence that synthesised ideas, media, character, narrative, sequence, and context.

Some candidates submitted portfolios that were well over the allowed limit. On occasion, needless showing of process took too much time, most notably in those submissions using Blender. Candidates do however need to consider the duration allowed for slides – images that stay up for too short a time prevent graphic outcomes from being seen clearly.

Candidates should consider placing titles on the same slide as the first digital object in that phase of production rather than as a separate slide. Titles should not last longer than the images, sequences and developmental work being shown. Digital objects that are not the candidate’s own creations must be acknowledged as such.

Grade awarding 

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • recognised what was working and being achieved in an iterative sequence which fostered a continuity of visual elements and ideas
  • generated and established a set of resources at the beginning of Folio One – and those that refuelled and increased this visual library improved their performance
  • understood that systematically testing and generating options afforded greater likelihood of ideational and compositional resolution
  • closely followed and often emulated the conventions employed by artists’ models rather than integrating and advancing learnings from research and applying ownership
  • made minor shifts to advance ideas, often repositioning existing elements within a composition rather than forming new elements and graphics
  • utilised a presentation framework predicated on concepts, developments, and finals within chosen sub-briefs
  • set themselves a brief which was narrow from the outset (to provide scope for purposeful investigation, candidates are encouraged to respond to topic, intention, purpose (why), and audience)
  • predetermined the formats and sub-briefs they used rather than letting their investigation into ideas and contexts determine whether websites, motion, gaming, advertisement, poster or billboards were central to the graphic intentions and narratives explored
  • revealed a lack of analytical, editing and reductive skills by “throwing everything at the board” – a phase of reflection is needed before the folio is finalised
  • demonstrated foundational understanding of conventions appropriate to graphic design practice and media application.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • relied on found imagery (these candidates would have benefited from their own image production phases)
  • produced an insufficient amount of work to meet the standard
  • did not include a design brief, or the stated brief was disconnected from the evidence on the folio
  • presented work across the folio that lacked a systematic direction (NB irregular sizing, confused ordering of sequences and rushed cropping of artwork hinders readability)
  • flitted from one aesthetic treatment to another, shifting style, type treatment and colour between sub-briefs
  • unsuccessfully identified and managed visual elements to the point that narratives, character design, motion, or typography and image relationships failed to communicate intent, message, or meaning
  • revealed a lack of understanding of the constraints and conventions of design practice, signalling a lack of research and exploration
  • lacked an understanding of basic design conventions (including layout and text handling, and specific formats such as poster, tickets, and website)
  • mismanaged media, appearing to play with filters and Adobe software rather than using processes with ideational and editorial direction.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly:

  • generated a range of options from the start, allowing them to explore and test ideas critical to making decisions relevant to their proposal and intention
  • selected and combined elements to formulate new graphic ideas, icons, straplines, and typefaces in order to forge purposeful communication
  • established a clear brand, and consistently incorporated cues from the brand into all collateral and formats across the folio
  • explored a range of ideas in generating a drawing phase (sketches, type design, drawing, collage, sequence, and photoshoots) that showed candidate ownership originating from a genuine place
  • contextualised and produced final outcomes (brochures were made and presented, storybooks were constructed, and digital print matter was edited into ‘situation’), showing understanding of media and materiality, knowing how it would be read, folded, and displayed
  • articulated a brief that could steer an investigation – the topic was genuinely interesting and relevant to the candidate, and so their voice, perspectives, and findings were placed at the centre in an authentic context
  • utilised research to effectively sustain their own inquiry, drawing on a range of conventions and tropes particular to the media investigation to design an appropriate outcome
  • started to test and trial other formats, modes, and materials to extend ideas in new ways 
  • executed outcomes with some skill and demonstrated control and understanding of design conventions (e.g. candidates presenting in moving images showing engagement in interactivity; character development for animation, game design or media design
  • used their own copywriting, offering a suite of straplines, using data, statistics, and pop-out quotes to convey message in final outcomes.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • utilised drawing in all its forms to create a large pool of self-generated content to use in later phases of work, and constantly updated and extended these creative visual elements were constantly updated and extended
  • used second photoshoots, text development and copywriting, icon systems, 3D modelling and media extensions to craft imagery and create narratives / meaning
  • moved systematically between multiple phases of work to extend, integrate, and revisit ideas, soliciting cleverer outcomes that employed ideational strategies such as humour, exaggeration, irony, and graphic attitude
  • executed all artwork as finished work consistently across the folio, revealing high levels of technical skill and a sharp eye for refinement
  • moved confidently between processes, media, and materials, adopting interdisciplinary modalities that included model-making, site-based work, interaction, time-based work, typographical and print-based work, printmaking, illustration, and photography
  • displayed a command over technology, software, and procedures to fluently use design conventions to propel their own visual investigation into the topic
  • identified and synthesised contextual and visual research, showing an ability to analyse the most successful elements from previous phases of work to deepen and extend their ideas
  • demonstrated critical design thinking by identifying the design problem in the setting and linking the brief to the lateral thinking and experimentation evident in the sub-briefs
  • managed lateral and conceptual thinking in parallel with the development of visual language and an understanding of design systems, showing an ability to situate and explore a proposal in multiple directions
  • intelligently edited their board, considering colour choice, format sizes, work in context, high production values, and grid layout.

91456: Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within painting

Examinations 

As outlined in the assessment specifications, candidates were required to present a portfolio of individual candidate-led evidence for assessment, consisting of either a three-panel portfolio (folio board) or a moving image submission, representing the requirements of the standard.

Observations 

Candidates who demonstrated a genuine ownership of their proposition were able to draw upon a depth of prior knowledge which provided a richness of options for development early in the research and learning process.

If using portraiture, successful candidates applied themselves to perfecting the drawing and painting techniques required to succeed at this level or used their own photo shoots to control the model to refine picture-making concerns.

Candidates’ critical and intelligent use of artistic practice, relevant to their subject matter, was also common in these genuine inquiries. If a process like mixed media was being investigated; a holistic approach, drawing on a rich history from Kurt Schwitters to Robert Rauschenberg and then an Aotearoa New Zealand example like Philippa Blair, could be explored. This distillation of approaches to inform further work resulted in an analysis and investigation that was not derivative. Pattern-making might be reframed through other traditions such as modernism or geometric abstraction.

Developmental work, often seen as sequences of smaller works, enabled candidates to find pictorial solutions efficiently. It also enabled exploration of a greater range of options that then could inform finished works. When exploring sculptural, print-based, or even digital processes in relation to their painting, the intelligent application back into further work is encouraged.

It is essential for candidates to find what mode and medium best fits them. All approaches to subject matter in painting (landscape, still life, personal narrative, or abstraction) are valid; there is not one type that is more successful. However, it needs to fit the candidate’s skill set.

The ownership identified as central to success for candidates does contrast with a common over-reliance on online images. This is often seen as making painted versions of online images linked to a theme or narrative. This does not allow candidates to develop pictorial concerns associated with painting conventions. The teaching moment is in delving into why candidates are drawn to these images in terms of picture-making conventions and redirecting them to related sources within the history of painting

While works may be linked by narrative, the folio is not a narrative sequence. Picture-making skills and issues must be explored. Examples of an unsuccessful digital painting boards focused on repetitive character designs at the expense of pictorial conventions more commonly associated with painting practice. Research, especially books which have a curated component, can help candidates. For example, the “White Cloud World” book series by Paul Tobin looks at New Zealand artists, showcasing work influencing popular culture such as movies, gaming, and graphic novels. Such work may engage the candidate in moving forward.

Another major component of success in this folio is layout or how clearly the learning analysis and investigation and application of new knowledge in new work is conveyed across the boards. Some of the nuts and bolts often mentioned are worth repeating. Candidates should ensure work is just only temporarily stuck down until late in process to ensure flexibility in response to unexpected outcomes in their practice.

Candidates should allow space around work to ensure work is able to be read. At times black backgrounds on boards can dull the impact of paint and colours, confusing reading. Developmental sketches can be ideal to clarify decisions that have been made. Labelling of well-printed quality photographs with sizes, dimensions or types of performance can help markers identify practice. 

Especially important in digital painting is test-printing A1 sheets. The risk of not doing so is discovering tonal subtleties have disappeared, as the image on screen often varies from print. 

A focus on managing the layout process may limit the damage of wet works in the marking process which is always disheartening to all involved.

Where possible, candidates should attend gallery visits, which often are leading exponents of locating an artist’s practice in larger context. For example, Hilma af Klint’s show at Wellington City Gallery showed her finished paintings in the context of her watercolours, drawings, and written notebooks. Books and other publications are also often curated in a similar way to provide the important art-making context needed for learning in our classrooms. This type of evidence provides examples of genuine developmental work alongside finished paintings that candidates can draw upon.

Grade awarding 

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • showed engagement with the subject matter which led to increased production levels and an increased skill set
  • presented a linear journey towards a preordained outcome. More reflection or editing and ordering in response to unexpected outcomes would enable development and clarification of pictorial concerns providing more options
  • worked well with each phase of work and developed links between these, but overall, a limited amount of work, or work that was less resolved towards end of boards meant they were unable to further extend ideas
  • selected relevant examples of painting practice and applied them to their own work to extend ideas with appropriate skill
  • often seemed to copy other artists rather than show how, through research, they had learned to apply ideas to their own work
  • showed limited understanding of painting grounds or surfaces that images were placed on
  • had an over-reliance on traced images or painted over photocopies that often-showed inadequate skill set for proposition.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • submitted boards that took too long to establish a proposition
  • tended to list images associated loosely with a theme or idea, without engagement with any pictorial conventions in earlier work which would have allowed further development to occur
  • lacked development due to repetition of the same work rather than new work, sometimes enlarging their own work with colour photocopiers to act as space fillers
  • moved from one style of artistic practice to another for each board without an underlining purpose
  • copied and curated a board from the internet around a theme or idea, rather than being engaged in making better paintings. They were unable to apply the reasons why they liked the work to their own work
  • presented a skill level below that required at curriculum level 8, with a reliance on tracing found images hindering the acquisition of required skills
  • presented an unsystematic and ill-considered layout that was interchangeable, reflecting a lack of engagement with their ideas or pictorial concerns when exploring links between works
  • submitted an unfinished folio board showing insufficient evidence to meet the body of work criteria.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly:

  • consistently explored inventive compositions refining and integrating ideas.
  • showed smaller shifts of ideas though still with a clear purpose across board. More critical editing and reordering may have led to further advancement of new ideas
  • demonstrated a sustained use of appropriate media which enabled techniques to develop
  • used colour and layout to unite ideas and performance
  • showed a consistent proficiency of skills across the body of work. If dealing with the human figure, they understood the skills they needed to facilitate this
  • used well-prepared surfaces and grounds to work on that showed a proficient understanding of picture making concerns
  • showed a level of research underpinning their practice that allowed ideas to develop through small drawing series as well as finished paintings.
  • more research may have allowed for lateral investigations to further extend options to explore with more clarity around the synthesis of ideas within work.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • When dealing with portraiture, explored subject matter through their own photo shoots, allowing the candidate greater ownership and control over picture-making options
  • demonstrated an intelligent synthesis of ideas as the result of research and prior knowledge when it came to culturally focussed subject matter
  • effectively used small developmental series which were integral to the body of work being able to show the depth and range of ideas.
  • greater exploration seemed to allow for unexpected outcomes which were then critically applied in more finished paintings
  • demonstrated a fluent use of media built upon critically through the intelligent use of artistic practice which resulted in a rich body of work
  • explored other practices such as sculpture, print based, and digital painting, then incorporated this learning back into their work
  • presented well-edited boards that often appeared to be part of larger body of work
  • consistently used an intelligent and clear layout across boards to support their thinking process
  • used well-labelled and high-quality documentation, adequate spacing and hierarchy of size effectively to show importance of various passages of work.

91457:  Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within photography

Examinations 

As outlined in the assessment specifications, candidates were required to present a portfolio of individual candidate-led evidence for assessment, consisting of either a three-panel portfolio (folio board) or a moving image submission, representing the requirements of the standard.

Observations 

Submissions overall saw high candidate ownership and fewer whole-class programmes. Propositions were driven by candidates and investments ranged from identity and culture to social issues, abstraction to surveying a site or space. Documentary photography appeared to have more depth and candidate engagement this year, with less superficial quality.

Candidates’ approaches were more mindful and mature. Concepts centred around light and photography history were also smartly presented.

The use of Photoshop filters for specific effects and constructing images is still strongly evident in photography. More candidates used these purposefully to generate and clarify ideas including demonstrating confident levels of technical skill. Photoshop filters should be discouraged if used just for creative 'play'. Moving image entries, while remaining very few, were handled well. Candidates appeared confident and handled the requirements to present a moving image appropriately.

Candidates used a range of photographic conventions such as various viewpoints, depth of field (soft focus / blur and focus) and varying the distance to their subject including using a range of lighting effects, whether that was adjusting the light contrast or using a range of light sources.

It is important that candidates regularly do print tests. Often a computer screen can differ from the printed photograph. Ensuring that the physicality of the print connects to the subject matter is important. There were many submissions where the printing was “milky” in appearance. If a candidate is wanting a washed-out aesthetic, testing printing is critical. Trying out different paper surfaces can assist with decision on what the best option is. Testing is key. When printing regularly, candidates can consider the communicative value they wish to present.

Candidates should allow time to stick work down, so edges are straight, and kinks can be ironed out.

Grade awarding 

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • developed a proposition with some research that enabled ideas to be developed and regenerated in a linear manner
  • demonstrated an adequate understanding of their camera device
  • presented a systematic body of work with reference to some established practice which would support decision making
  • were reliant on several photo shoots which limited their ability to clarify and regenerate ideas
  • delivered sequences of photographs where the phases between works were small steps
  • presented a body of work that demonstrated understanding of some photographic conventions.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • did little or no research relevant to their concept or topic, therefore presented a body of work that did not clarify and regenerate ideas
  • displayed inconsistent levels of technical facility appropriate to photography practice, often presenting images with dense and dark contrast and incorrect exposures
  • selected a very limited or singular subject matter that did not provide sufficient material to revisit, reconfigure or restage
  • seemed to cut up images randomly in an attempt to make more images, often using unnecessary fillers or inappropriate materials to generate more work
  • presented a combination of irrelevant and often unrelated images that displayed ideas that were unclear with no or very minimal reference of established practice to support decisions
  • did not edit out earlier phases of working due to insufficient amount of work made throughout the course of the year, hence had to present everything they had photographed.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly:

  • capitalised on the research undertaken during the year which enabled them to formulate an in-depth proposition with options
  • demonstrated proficient technical skill with a variety of processes used appropriate to their concept
  • analysed and reflected on their ideas to make purposeful editing, sequencing and hierarchical decisions
  • selected pictorial conventions and processes to use that were influenced by established practice they had investigated
  • established combinations with particular conventions and ideas that were experimented with on panels one and two; however, panel three often lacked depth and the synthesis of ideas required for Achievement with Excellence.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • portrayed a high level of engagement and ownership in their art making and presented an independent investigation that was connected to the candidate in some way
  • mastered the technical requirements with confidence and characteristics of their chosen area of study, whether it was analogue processes such as cyanotypes or toning, and / or using specific software to create selected effects
  • represented risk taking that demonstrated the ability to depart from established practice and make new informed decisions to direct ideas
  • made successful decisions about editing, sequencing, ordering, and hierarchy
  • clarified to regenerate a depth of ideas and critically revisit previous work in order to expand and refine their intended outcome.

91458:  Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within printmaking

Examinations 

As outlined in the assessment specifications, candidates were required to present a portfolio of individual candidate-led evidence for assessment, consisting of either a three-panel portfolio (folio board) or a moving image submission, representing the requirements of the standard.

Observations 

Candidates successfully used printmaking to convey ideas and explore conceptual concerns relating to identity, whakapapa, culture, beliefs, tūrangawaewae, and social, political, and environmental issues. Most submissions explored and built on individual interests and experiences, with an authentic voice clearly embedded in the work. Producing learning based on connections or a personal perspective and working from own photos helped drive forward ideas.

As well as conceptually driven submissions, formal picture-making and abstraction were dealt with sensitively, often by those with an interest in an expressive and gestural approach. Pictorial interests alone can drive a thorough and in-depth investigation. Submissions often began by examining forms in real space, exploring proximity and scale then systematically generating through to flattened, abstract forms and space. Candidates looked to both traditional and contemporary artistic practices to inform learning. For candidates presenting narratives or illustrating a story, it is important submissions also move conceptually or pictorially to regenerate and build on ideas, thus ensuring they meet the standard. 

Ordering of works should show thinking. A considered layout with a series of smaller works leading to more resolved larger work helps show the shifts and development across panels. Examiners should be able to clearly see the decision-making occurring and pictorial advancements from the top of the first panel to the bottom of the third panel. To ensure the shifts across the portfolio can be read clearly and sequentially, it is important to allow space around each work, and not present drawings or prints touching or overlapping. It is also advisable to have at least three developmental pushes compositionally within each panel.

The majority of learning presented in Printmaking shows candidates are clearly able to analyse strengths within their own learning and build on their most successful aspects, along with ideas from established practice, to inform their thinking towards developing new works. While some candidates seamlessly and fluidly translated images from one printmaking process to another to extend ideas and reform these into new works, others successfully mastered a single technique, such as monoprint, with skill and expertise.

Some portfolios showed relevant and integrated use of three-dimensional print works and installation to intelligently regenerate new ideas and help shift the work into new directions. Colour was selected and used with flair and purpose to communicate and add meaning. In some cases, candidates chose to use black and white and many of these submissions were powerful with well-understood use of mark-making and pattern. Hand printing, monoprints, rust prints, embossing, cardboard prints, frottage, transfers, digital prints, and imprints from plants were common approaches as many candidates had less opportunity to use printing presses. Card and plastic containers were used to incise into for intaglio works, as a plate for monoprints or as a base for collagraph. It was great to see so many innovative, affordable, and environmentally friendly approaches.

This subject spans painterly, photographic, sculptural, graphic, collage, digital, and illustration-based interests.

Grade awarding 

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • engaged in a linear journey, often repeating ideas a few times or making only slight pictorial shifts
  • established related drawings and prints initially but did not integrate or revisit strengths into later work
  • attempted to order works to show the development of ideas and compositional shifts
  • restricted their performance and possible outcomes by limiting options investigated on the first panel
  • concentrated on narrating a story at the expense of developing a range of pictorial ideas
  • demonstrated some understanding of printmaking techniques, skills, and conventions.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • began with a narrow proposition or struggled to establish a set idea to explore
  • repeatedly printed the same plate often across more than one panel
  • used found or borrowed images rather than taking own composed photographs to work from
  • demonstrated a lack of sensitivity in the use of ink, over-applying, or over wiping inks
  • arranged works in a manner that was not systematic or sequential
  • presented very similar works, reflecting a lack of editing and risk-taking.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly:

  • established a range of options and gathered ideas to visually set up a clear and broad proposition
  • ordered and sized images to emphasise strengths and show decision making
  • showed purpose and well-understood use of specific printmaking methods and techniques
  • maintained momentum across all three boards by generating ideas and combining pictorial devices
  • presented learning with breathing space between works to allow individual works to be read easily
  • combined approaches such as collage, different processes, or digital media seamlessly and effectively
  • produced sequences of small studies exploring options and analysed these to advance successful ideas.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • displayed ownership and authenticity of personalized ideas/concepts based on individual stylistic strengths
  • showed deep thinking and analysed strengths to provide a range of options and expand subject/concept
  • selected and mixed colour critically to communicate meaning
  • took risks and built on learning, including unexpected outcomes, to open up further options and possibilities
  • confidently selected and used printmaking methods and techniques to emphasize ideas
  • drew on ideas from a wide variety of sources and integrated these
  • demonstrated fluidity by seamlessly transitioning between traditional and digital practices
  • used printmaking as drawing and thumbnail studies to open new possibilities to investigate
  • explored relevant extension possibilities such as printing onto objects, different surfaces, and installation.

91459: Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within sculpture

Examinations 

As outlined in the assessment specifications, candidates were required to present a portfolio of individual candidate-led evidence for assessment, consisting of either a three-panel portfolio (folio board) or a moving image submission, representing the requirements of the standard.

Observations 

Where possible, candidates should be supported to attend in-person local sculptural exhibitions or public works so they can understand first-hand the nature and scale of sculptural work. They also benefit from exploring the physical properties of a wide range of available materials and scale so they can expand the understanding of sculptural practice.

The understanding of established practice should be evident in the work. Candidates are advised against putting artist model images on the folio.

Identifying the core sculptural verbs or ideas in candidates’ work allows them to clearly establish what the important sculptural issues are and then prioritise a critical reflection of what to do next. 

Schools are discouraged from using whole class programmes that give a step-by-step approach to the production of work. This stops candidates from exploring their own ideas in sculptural form and does not allow for the regeneration of ideas.

Grade awarding 

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • utilised the same or similar materials to develop sculptural ideas and outcomes
  • created simple small-scale objects that illustrated narrative ideas or themes
  • employed readily available materials and sites to develop ideas in a conventional sculptural proposition
  • made simple steps in the development of sculptural ideas
  • presented accurate photo-documentation of sculptural activity
  • used classic sculptural verbs or a thematic system to develop ideas in the body of work.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • made a very limited number of works that were rearranged rather than developed
  • did not edit the photo-documentation to order their ideas
  • demonstrated a lack of understanding of sculptural conventions and techniques
  • struggled to identify established sculptural practice in their work
  • used photographic established practice instead of sculpture established practice to influence work
  • presented moving image work that did not evidence any sculptural activity.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly:

  • presented a body of work with a clear sculptural proposition that was expanded upon with reference to established sculptural practice
  • used drawing in both two and three dimensions to support and expand the sculptural proposition
  • made conceptual and or formal links between phases of work
  • employed a range of sculptural modes of working that were linked through explicit and implicit sculptural established practice
  • demonstrated a command of materials and techniques with purpose
  • produced work that utilised formal sculptural concerns to drive conceptual elements within the body of work.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • presented a body of work that showed an understanding of a range of established sculptural practice
  • used humour or political critique via sculptural methods that examined contemporary social issues
  • utilised a strategic approach to extend ideas and synthesise sculptural conventions
  • employed a clear conceptual framework to investigate a range of sculptural processes
  • made lateral jumps in the relating of ideas and methods in the production of work
  • provided contextual statements of site and duration to clarify what was happening in time-based work
  • placed a clear contents thumbnail image page at the start of the moving image submission to show the body of work as a whole
  • made ambitious scale or durational works that expanded the proposition of the sculptural intent
  • presented well-shot and steady footage of genuine time-based sculptural activity that indicated the context and duration of the work.

Visual Arts subject page

Previous years' reports
2020 (PDF, 728KB)

2019 (PDF, 436KB)

2018 (PDF, 197KB)

2017 (PDF, 85KB)

2016 (PDF, 261KB)

 
Skip to main page content Accessibility page with list of access keys Home Page Site Map Contact Us newzealand.govt.nz