Phase 1. Creating Self-Portrait with Adobe Illustrator


Students will create a self-portrait illustration with the photography of their self-portrait, which was one of their previous project.

Students will make the placed photo layer to template, and create a new layer to trace their self-portraits. 

Central Foci
1. Art Context: 

Illustrating, drawing, digital painting

2. Elements and Principles: 
  • Elements: line, shape
  • Principle: harmony, balance
3. Personal Perspective: 

Students will choose their self-portrait photography to illustrate with Adobe Illustrator.

4. Production ("Making" words): 

Tracing, illustrating, reproducing, drawing, digital painting.

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Trace their photography with Pen Tool and control Bezier Handle to reproduce their self-portrait photography to illustration. 
  • Control Bezier Handle to create natural curves and lines to create shapes. 
  • Develop their Adobe Illustrator skills

Students will understand that:

  • With more practice in canalization, they will be able to create precise illustration.
Essential Prior Learning
  • Use of Pen tool
  • Use of Live Paint Bucket Tool
  • Knowledge of social justice
Learning Readiness

My cooperating teacher told me that students already learned about social justice in their social studies class. For Adobe Illustrator, I previously taught students how to use the Pen Tool and Live Bucket Tool, so students are in process of learning, but they still need to develop using Bezier Handles to create natural curves. 

Potential Misunderstandings and Strategies

Some students still struggle using Bezier Handle, and their lines are often formed as broken straight lines, rather than curved, organic type of lines.

I have prepared several types of instructions - video recording of using Adobe Illustrator, PDF instructions with screenshots, and written instruction, which I uploaded on Google Classroom.


iMac (or Desktop Computer)

Adobe Illustrator

Self-portrait photography

Drawing Tablet (optional)

Visual Resources

Shepard Fairey - "We the People Are Greater Than Fear"

Jessical Sabogal - "Women Are Perfect"