Visual Arts Camp
July 16-21, 2023 Grades 8-12 (grade completion)
About Visual Arts Camp
If you're excited about art, we invite you to challenge yourself in a variety of art media at our Visual Arts Camp. You'll experiment with new materials and techniques while producing portfolio-quality work.
You'll also experience:
- Group art and recreation activities.
- Performance art presentations.
- Presentations by nationally known artists, art historians and studio artists.
You'll stay in Neptune Hall during camp. Your experience will end with an art show open to your friends and family. All campers will receive a camp t-shirt!
For more information check out camp information and policies.
Thank you to Prismacolor, the sponsor of Visual Arts Camp.
What to Bring to Art Camp
- Comfortable/sturdy walking shoes or sandals
- Note: Flip flops should only be used in the residence hall.
- Umbrella or rain gear
- Mosquito repellent
- Alarm clock
- Water bottle
- Sheets and pillowcase (standard twin size)
- Towels, blanket, pillow
- Small amount of money for souvenirs and snacks
- Old clothes for studio work
- $175 key deposit: envelope with check/cash/money order with the camper’s name on the outside.
You'll attend two studio classes each day. When you register, you'll indicate your choices for classes. The class content changes every year, providing new experiences for both new and returning students. There is limited space in each class, and classes with insufficient enrollment may be cancelled.
In addition to studio classes, you'll enjoy presentations by accomplished guest speakers as they share their career paths in the visual arts. You will receive your studio assignments at camp check-in.
- Drawing Realism - Becki Miller
Using traditional drawing materials, campers create realistic drawings that address both composition and concept. Techniques are explored that allow artists to render images expressively, using mark making, visual texture, and subtle gradations.
- Portraits in Acrylic- Tim Roloff
Students explore portraiture through observation and experimentation using acrylic paint to create works that reflect personal content.
- Painting with Pastel – Ashley Martinez
Students will be introduced to the responsive and subtle surfaces created by pastel. Using artist-quality hard and soft pastels, this class will explore developing transitional layers of color to build smooth surfaces as well as expressive mark-making. Imagery options will include portraiture and still life.
- Creating with Color – Samantha Haring
Students explore unexpected and inventive use of color in drawing and painting. Students learn to build visually powerful surfaces using color in a representational or non-traditional way. Using a variety of materials, works are created to reflect symbolic and personal ideas.
- Figure Sculpting- April Macatangay
Students will learn accurate human proportions and how to sculpt the human form with modeling clay. This class includes experimenting with sculpting muscle structures, clothing, textures, and different postures to create figures that show depth and narrative.
- Experimental Drawing Practices – John Zilewicz
Exploring a multitude of media, methods and techniques, students will use unconventional approaches to drawing in order to develop creative and imaginative approaches to art making. Skill building as well as producing works based on chance will allow students to examine the possibilities of mark-making, space, and surface.
- Printmaking – TBD
Students will explore a variety of printmaking techniques and experiences. The focus of this class will be to develop a series of prints as students work in the NIU printmaking studio.
- Acrylic Painting - Courtney Haugdahl
Learning traditional and expressive acrylic painting techniques, students will create dynamic and dramatic paintings that reflect technical excellence.
- Experimental Drawing Studies - Bjana Lunde
Using a variety of colored pencil techniques including expressive mark making, students will use observation skills to create drawings that record visual information in new ways.
- Life Drawing – Ailysh Cooper
Students will learn to draw the human figure while being introduced to college-level life drawing concepts and techniques. A variety of materials will be used while working from a live model.
- Sketchbook Reimagined - John Zilewicz
Benefits of a daily sketchbook practice include quick thinking, responsive drawing, sensitivity to visual stimuli and immediacy of response. Students will focus on idea development and experimentation within a sketchbook format. Using collage, drawing, painting and mixed media processes, students will concentrate on producing imagery reflecting their own personal voice.
- Sculpture – Dustan Creech
Students will experiment with the construction of 3D forms focusing on exploring a variety of materials, techniques, and personal narrative. Developing forms that convey meaning, artists will create final works that consider design concepts as well as use materials in inventive ways.
Early bird registration fee: $700 (postmarked June 1 or earlier)
Registration fee: $750
Registration Deadline: June 28, 2023
Art supply fee: $85 (mandatory)
Returning camper and NIU family discount: $25 (for campers who have previously attended Visual Arts Camp and the children and grandchildren of NIU students, staff and faculty members)
Camp fills quickly, so register early! You can register online or by mail. You'll pay a $100 deposit when you register (unless applying for a summer camp scholarship). The remaining balance is due on June 15.
Need-based scholarship assistance is available!
Replacement key cards and deposit: All campers must bring a deposit to the first day of camp to be given a key to their room. These funds will not be deposited but will be held by the Summer in the Arts office in the case of a lost key. The funds will be deposited only in the case that a key is lost. Key deposits are returned to campers when they return their room keys at camp check out.
- The deposit can be check, money order, or cash.
- Please put the deposit in an envelope with the camper’s name
- Deposit Amount: $175
Our Visual Arts Camp staff includes talented NIU faculty and students, alumni, guest artists, and award-winning area art teachers. The ratio of campers to staff members is about 12:1. Staff members are assigned to each residence hall floor and accompany campers to all meals and activities. Complete camp staff info will be available soon.
Ashley Martinez (painting with pastel)
Samantha Haring (creating with color)
Bjana Lunde (experimental drawing studies)
Dustan Creech (sculpture)
A general overview of the camp schedule is below.
|Date and Time||Activity||Location|
Jack Arends Hall, room 100
Sunday to Friday
Closing ceremony/art show
- Summer in the Arts
Contact UsCollege of Visual and Performing Arts
Office of External Programs
Music Building 132
Online Office HoursMonday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
(lunch from noon – 1 p.m.)
To protect the safety of our staff, students and families, we will operate remotely until further notice. Our staff will be available at their remote offices during normal NIU business hours and can be contacted via phone or email.Join Our Camps Mailing List