B.F.A. in Studio Art - Painting and Drawing

Undergraduate students can pursue two-dimensional study in drawing or painting at Lamar University through the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with an emphasis in Studio Art and declaring a concentration in either Drawing or Painting.


Painting consists of an ongoing dialogue between the present and the past. This dialogue is filled with conflicting visions, concepts and philosophies involving the personal and the political, the individual and the social. It provides the context within which the art object we call a "painting" was and continues to be crafted and viewed.

Lamar University’s painting curriculum includes many opportunities for the development of skill and personal vision. Students are exposed to a variety of approaches to painting including diverse media, historical and contemporary techniques, color theory, the chemistry and physics of paint and painting supports, the presentation of paintings and, most importantly, faculty guidance in the student’s process of self-discovery. Supported by a rigorous drawing curriculum, students work with individually assigned problems in painting toward the achievement of mastery.

Painting instruction at Lamar is undertaken in two studios devoted exclusively to the subject, including individually assigned studio spaces within the Art Building and a separate building on campus, the Art House.

The developing awareness of location of self in relationship to the world in general and to the worldwide network of art are both critical steps in the painting student’s development and are nurtured through required courses in Art History and Studio Seminar. The latter course involves topical reading and discussion in a variety of subjects from the areas of art theory and criticism.

The undergraduate painting study experience culminates in Lamar’s unique senior thesis program involving a series of original works produced by each Bachelor of Fine Arts degree candidate, exhibited in the Dishman Art Museum, and defended by the student in a formal written thesis.


At Lamar University, drawing, as a foundational instructional component, unifies students’ studio experience in all areas of study in the department. At this level, drawing is implemented as a means to understanding the visual world and as the simplest method to organize visual ideas, connecting all other artistic mediums. As a concentration area, drawing is taught as a broadly defined medium, while emphasizing pictorial form in drawing as a finished expression.

For more than 50 years, the Lamar University Department of Art has maintained a commitment to a drawing curriculum based on the development of traditional skills through observational drawing and an understanding of human anatomy. Using a variety of media, courses include instruction in technical development, historical and contemporary issues, and the various possibilities of artistic exploration being conducted in contemporary drawing.

At Lamar, drawing serves as a foundational instructional component in all areas of study in the department, and emphasizes strong drawing skills in students of all concentrations. Observational drawing sharpens technical skills, perceptual skills, and critical judgment. By learning to translate three-dimensional form and space into two-dimensional imagery, students develop a relationship with drawing materials and gain an understanding of pictorial space applicable to all other two-dimensional media.  Art students also learn to implement drawing as a tool for planning and testing ideas, relatable to all other art media.

Lower division drawing courses expose students to key concepts of observational drawing. Upper division courses focus on the human figure as a means to further refine technical proficiency, as a vehicle for organizing pictorial space, and as an additional avenue for refining content. Advanced drawing classes expose students to the broad character of drawing in its contemporary context and encourage students to explore their own interests while developing a personal voice in their work and striving to create a body of related drawings. At Lamar University, students are strongly encouraged to explore drawing for its full potential.

The area is housed in two dedicated classrooms featuring a variety of still life objects, a collection of classical plaster casts, an anatomical skeleton, and two ecorches for the study of musculature. Lockers and flat-file storage are available for student materials and artwork. Upper division drawing majors are assigned space in the art building and ArtHouse as available. Drawing majors completing senior thesis are also assigned space in the Senior Thesis Room on an as needed basis.

The undergraduate drawing study experience culminates in Lamar’s distinctive senior thesis program involving a series of original works produced by each Bachelor of Fine Arts degree candidate, exhibited in the Dishman Art Museum, and defended by the student in a formal written thesis.