How To Write An Art History Research Essay: STEP 2

Now that we know what are we answering to in our essay, let us proceed to the second step, which is:

STEP 2: Have an opinion

Once you know what is being asked, you can form a response. Good essays have a point of view to argue from, so before you start make sure you have an overview of what your response is going to be and how you are going to prove it. Jot down your ideas in a loose format to see if you can find relationships between points, strengths or weaknesses. Look for connections in ideas and facts. This could be done as simple bullet points, as Post­It notes, a “Pros & Cons” list, or any other brainstorming method. What’s important is to get all your ideas down in one place.

Remember to make a note of any questions that might arise as these could potentially become weaknesses if you don’t address them, or could lead your argument in a new, more exciting direction.

Once you have your argument established it can be helpful to write a mini­statement to focus and refine your point:
“Although the Abstract Expressionists believed they were creating works that crossed cultural borders and could be understood at a deeper level than language, they didn’t succeed because our reality is determined by our individual past experiences. “


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