Art and Design Department: The Philosophy


As we move into the 21st century, our students face a globalized society where their individual footprint will become increasingly essential to their future success. The Art and Design Department at Oak Hills High School provides students with the opportunity to develop a stronger sense of their own identity while striving to unlock the artist in every student by encouraging them to continuously discover their own aesthetic voice through the process of creating art, exploring techniques, materials, concepts, and theories. As students are guided through the process of creating art, we expand their creative problem-solving skills, build confidence through successful mastery of media, and use constructive criticism to enhance personal reflection, growth, and maturity. The Art and Design Department shares the belief that not only through an understanding of design/art foundations, but with an understanding of art history, the foundational concepts and communication found within art and design can students reach their full potential as artists while they are challenged in a safe environment. Additionally, the Art and Design Department actively works to connect our students and school to the greater world community through the arts.

The Oak Hills High School Art and Design Department offers students exposure to extensive Studio Art and Design Lab experience while providing a strong academic foundation in the arts. Our goal is to equip students with the skills necessary to advance and succeed in the arts at a post-secondary and professional level. The Art and Design program provides students with opportunities to gain foundational knowledge of the visual arts- through personal expression, conceptual exploration, design analysis, and practice. Students choosing to participate in the Art and Design program will not only gain skills in the creation of original artworks but also in the areas of critical analysis and professional applications. By junior year, students choosing to participate in an Art and Design concentration will have the opportunity to enroll in any of the Advanced Placement (AP) courses- where they will have the opportunity to earn college credit.

The curriculum of the Oak Hills High School Art and Design program relies heavily upon the introduction and exploration of the Elements and Principles of Design. Beginning in Art Foundations, and supported through all of the course offerings, students are introduced to the basic concept and role the Elements and Principles of Design play in a compositional arrangement. Classes combine theories of art history, criticism, and philosophy with the creation of works of art, contemporary culture, and design products.

A varied and strong curriculum exposes students to a variety of skills, which they may choose to pursue mastery. Instructional design is student-centered with methods employed to differentiate and accommodate all students’ needs. Additionally, students are taught about careers and the use of art and design techniques and concepts based on national and professional art standards. All visual arts courses follow the Ohio Visual Arts Standards, which encourage students to apply knowledge from other academic disciplines.

The Art and Design Department exposes students to the skills, concepts, and techniques needed to succeed in a broad range of careers in both the art and design fields. Some career opportunities include:

• Photography, Painting, Sculpture, Printmaking, Drawing, Fibers, Enamels, Metals, and Glass
• Art History and Appreciation
• Graphic/Digital Design
• Industrial Design
• Fashion Design
• Interior Design
• Architecture

High expectations for learning and production are the standard for the students and staff in the Oak Hills High School Art and Design Department. Showcasing the results of these high expectations is a standard practice through community shows and local, and national, art competitions.