1st Edition

Teaching Introduction to Theatrical Design A Process Based Syllabus in Costumes, Scenery, and Lighting

By Eric Appleton, Tracey Lyons Copyright 2017
    390 Pages
    by Routledge

    390 Pages
    by Routledge

    Teaching Introduction to Theatrical Design is a week-by-week guide that helps instructors who are new to teaching design, teaching outside of their fields of expertise, or looking for better ways to integrate and encourage non-designers in the design classroom. This book provides a syllabus to teach foundational theatrical design by illustrating process and application of the principals of design in costumes, sets, lights, and sound.



    • Organization of This Book
    • Our Formula
    • Creativity and Evaluation
    • Selecting Plays for Use in Class
    • The Classroom
    • Portfolio Development
    • Books We Want to Share With You

    Section One: Costume Design

    Chapter One: Organizing Principles of the Class and Week One

    • Session by Session Framework
    • Supplies Needed
    • Design Elements
    • Concept and Design Metaphor
    • Building a Student Portfolio: First Steps

    Chapter Two Week Two

    • Supplies Needed
    • Introduction of the Costume Design Final Project
    • Script Analysis
    • Quiz: Reading Comprehension
    • Unpacking the Play
    • Creating a Metaphor Statement
    • Using French Scenes to Dig Deeper into Detail
    • The Costume Plot
    • Script Analysis by Character
    • Drawing Clothing on the Human Body
    • Assigning Professional Designer Presentations
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Three

    • Supplies Needed
    • Costume Renderings
    • Creating Costume Rendering Templates
    • Color and Watercolors
    • "Twenty-One Black Dresses"
    • Further Research for Designers
    • Library Fundamentals
    • Combining the Pieces to Build a Design
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Four

    • Supplies Needed
    • Swatching
    • Depicting Fabric with Paint
    • Developing Color Palettes
    • In Class Work Session
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Five

    • Professional Costume Designer Presentations
    • Presentation by a Guest Artist
    • Final Costume Design Project Presentations
    • Portfolio Development

    Part Two: Scenic Design

    Chapter Six

    • Supplies Needed
    • The Purpose of Scenery
    • Describing Environment
    • Script Analysis for Scenic Designers
    • Minimum Necessary Physical Requirements
    • Reading, Measuring, and Drawing in Scale
    • The Sizes of Real Things
    • Building the Small Stage House for "Your First Set Design"
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Seven

    • Supplies Needed
    • The Human Figure as Baseline of Proportion
    • Making Scale Things for the Model
    • The Function of Models
    • Using Footprints to Explore Space
    • The Groundplan is a Plan of Action
    • The Scenic Design Final Project
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Eight

    • Supplies Needed
    • Introduction to Drafting
    • What Exactly IS a Groundplan?
    • Graphics Standards
    • The Larger Stage House for he Scenic Design Final Project
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Nine

    • Supplies Needed
    • Thumbnails and Essential Gestures
    • In Class Work Session
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Ten

    • Professional Scenic Designer Presentations
    • Final Scenic Design Project Presentations
    • Guest Presenters
    • Portfolio Development

    Section Three: Lighting Design

    Chapter Eleven

    • Supplies Needed
    • Our Approach to Lighting Design
    • Thinking About Light
    • The Functions of Stage Light
    • Standard Lighting Angles
    • The Controllable Properties of Light
    • Demonstrating the Standard Angles of Light in the Light Lab
    • Analyzing the Lit Environment
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Twelve

    • Supplies Needed
    • The Cue Synopsis
    • Storyboarding a Lighting Design
    • Six Categories of Purposes
    • Building a Look in the Light Lab, Part One
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Thirteen

    • Supplies Needed
    • Building a Look in the Light Lab, Part Two
    • Applying Research Information to the Light Lab Look
    • Magic Sheets (Diagramming Purposes)
    • Color for Lighting
    • The Gel Swatchbook
    • Mixing Colors in the Light Lab
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Fourteen

    • Supplies Needed
    • Sketching Light in Color
    • In Class Work Session
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Fifteen

    • Professional Lighting Designer Presentations
    • Final Lighting Design Project Presentations
    • Portfolio Development

    Chapter Sixteen: An Extra Chapter of Introductory Steps in Developing a Lighting Design

    • Supplies Needed
    • Breaking the Stage into Areas of Control
    • The Lighting Section
    • Creating Beam Throw Templates
    • Using Beam Throw Templates to Guide Instrument Choices
    • The Preliminary Hook-Up

    Chapter Seventeen: Introduction to Sound Design

    • Supplies Needed
    • Learning to Talk About Sound
    • The Controllable Properties of Sound
    • Categories of Sound Cues
    • The Sound Plot and Script Analysis
    • Assembling a Preliminary Sound Design
    • Portfolio Development

    Appendix A怀: Our Current Syllabus

    Appendix B: Materials for Introduction to Design

    Appendix C: Two Short Plays Used for Design Exercises

    Appendix D: Sample Cue Synopses

    Appendix E: Standard Lighting Positions and Unit Numbering

    Appendix F: Design Timelines



    Eric Appleton is an Associate Professor of Theatre and Dance at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. He has been a freelance lighting and set designer since 1994. Tracey Lyons is currently a Lecturer at the University of Wisconsin ā€“ Whitewater. She has previously been on the faculty of the University of North Dakota and Del Mar College.

    "Teaching Introduction to Theatrical Design: A Process Based Syllabus in Costumes, Scenery, and Lighting is a full-colour book, filled with illustrated examples of how to effectively teach an introductory course in design. The authors have weighed mastery of the design process heavier than any specific area of design. I would highly recommend this book."

    - Catherine I. Mantooth, Lee University, USA.