HOW is Art made? + WHY is Art made? = IB VISUAL ART

The first step in IB is to be VERY familiar with MANY artists.  You want to look at a range of artists  – choose a few up and coming (unknowns), a few good contemporary and some masters.  Every project you do should be inspired by (at least) 2-3 artists.

To help you get started, first familiarize yourself with what IB requires of you.

What is IB Art?

Then, start looking around you.  Visit art galleries. Take photos.  Browse the internet, instagram, you tube and start thinking about yourself as an artist.

To get started… begin considering……What is important to you?  How can you use Art to express your ideas and identity?  What do we  mean by truth and reality in Art?  What are the moral obligations of an artist?  What do we expect from Art?  How do your ideas relate to world issues?  How do you use art in response to world cultures and issues? 

*NOTE: If you don’t want to subscribe to wordpress but still want to see my student’s examples of 7 – just email me. I’ll send you a paypal link.


Your workbook should be a comprehensive document that illustrates your artistic development and research. The purpose of the workbook is to encourage and record personally driven research and discovery that function interactively with independent art work.

What is your Journal for?

The current IB curriculum requests a digital submission with screens – which can be confusing on how to approach the Visual Arts Journal.  In my IB class, I suggest that at the very least, students use the Visual Art Journal as a sketchbook to collect brainstorming, idea development and compositional studies.  Documentation of Process, Art analysis and reflections can be added more easily (and with more space and depth) digitally. 

Make your Journal epic.


The Comparative Study is an independent critical and contextual investigation that explores artworks, objects and artifacts from differing cultural contexts.  It constitutes 20% of the final mark.  It is basically a comparative, analytic investigation that strikes a balance between visual and written with no prescribed format.

Start Early, Start Well

The CS must examine and compare at least 3 artworks.  At least 2 of the artworks need to be by different artists from different cultures.  The work for comparison should come from contrasting contexts (local, national, international and/or intercultural).

Step by Step Guide to your CS

Examples of 7


The Process Portfolio is your documentation of your Art Making.    This should work hand in hand with your Visual Arts Journal.  The focus of your PP is to highlight YOUR process of brainstorming, development, art process and reflective practice.  The PP is worth 40% of your mark and is externally assessed.

Start Early, Start Well

Students are to submit carefully selected materials which evidence their experimentation, exploration, manipulation and refinement of a variety of visual arts activities during the two year course.

Step by Step Guide to your PP

Examples of 7


The FINAL EXHIBITION is the culmination of your IB Art experience. It is where you can showcase a coherent collection of works which fulfill stated artistic intentions and communicate clear thematic or stylistic relationships across individual pieces. You will select and present your best artworks in the form of a curated final show and defend and articulate your purpose and intention in a written form through the Curatorial Rationale.

Step by Step Guide to your Exhibition.

Your Final Exhibition is submitted digitally,  so good photos and strict adherence to word count is necessary.  The Exhibition constitutes 40% of your mark. It is internally assessed and then externally moderated.

Examples of 7

International Mindedness

IB is an International Baccalaureate literally.  So there is much interest is developing international learners and fostering the idea of approaching art on an international scale.  Lucky for you, you probably go to an International School – so you have some idea of how to relate to your ‘international world’.

International-mindedness goes beyond simply knowing about visual arts from around the world. It is about developing internationally minded artists and learners. 

In your art works/journal/thoughts,  give some thought to how your art affects or is effected/affected by internationalism.


VA Resources

If you have looked over my site and my student’s examples and still feel that you need help – or want a second opinion on your ideas and works – I tutor Art students online.

We can talk over Skype or you can email me your documents and I can edit and/or email suggestions back.

My prices are $50 USD per Skype session (max 1 hour) and/or $50 USD per hour of my time reading/editing and giving suggestions on your work. I am happy to help with all 3 components – as they all flow together. The earlier you contact me the more help I can give – since I am an IB DP art teacher too and it gets hectic in March!!