1. Find background on your artist or genre. Use the ENCYCLOPEDIAS on this course guide (e.g. Oxford Art Online, American National Biography, Oxford African American Studies Center, or Encyclopedia of African American Culture and History. These will provide a couple of different perspectives on the artist and his works. Which one seems more complete; which one seems more current in terms of the bibliography? How do these sources differ? Are they written for different audiences? Do the bibliographies include primary source material?
2. REFINE YOUR SEARCH STRATEGY using keywords, catalog subject headings, and the vocabulary found in background reading.
3. FIND BOOKS ON THE ARTIST. USE CBBcat (the library catalog, on the library home page). Search on the artist's name, but also search on broader topics to put the artist in context. Once you find a reliable source, use the bibliography and notes to find other primary and secondary sources. Use Google Scholar to find other works by the author or related titles by scholars who have cited their work.
4. Use this course guide to FIND JOURNAL ARTICLES FROM SCHOLARLY DATABASES for this course. Use one of the recommended journal databases (e.g. JSTOR, America History and Life, ARTSOURCE, or others) to find an article about the artist and the work.
5. FIND PRIMARY SOURCES (i.e. sources for the time the artist was working, such as historic newspapers, letters, diaries, other images). Using the AR 256 guide to find Historic Newspapers. Are there any articles about the artist from the time period that he was active?
6. KEEP TRACK OF YOUR CITATIONS AND SOURCES