Thursday, November 26, 2009

Giving Thanks

I wrote this post Thanksgiving Day

We just let out for the Thanksgiving break and that ends our November pose. I was really happy how it turned out. The portrait turned out really well. I felt like I have a much better understanding of what needs to happen and am excited to get to work in December. In the afternoons I am still painting casts. I don't have a picture right now though.

Since it is the day we celebrate our blessings and focus on giving thanks I thought I would briefly reflect on some of the things for which I am thankful. First and foremost I am thankful for God. In our politically correct world we don't hear it enough, but I am thankful for His love and guidance. I am thankful for my family-my wife, my daughters as well as my siblings and extended family. I am grateful to be able to attend art school in New York City. That is the culmination of a lot of blessings. First off, for the encouragement my friends and family have given me and the support and sacrifice of my wonderful wife. She has been positive and always encouraged me, even though it hasn't been easy. I'm also very thankful to my in-laws. They have let us stay with them while I am attending art school. I am so thankful for everyone's sacrifices. I feel very humbled and thankful. I try and keep those sacrifices in the forefront of my mind. Those sacrifices help me to work harder.

Here is the November figure drawing

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Portraits and Poster Studies

I came to the realization that if I was to fully take advantage of my time here while studying at the Grand Central Academy of Art I needed to seek help from God and allow Him to influence my efforts. In my prayers I have tried to be more specific, asking not just for help, but how can I improve my portraits?, turn better form?, and what can I do to better understand my teachers critiques? I have noticed that as I pray more specifically and put more effort into my prayers I find the help I am asking for. As I ponder on my questions thoughts come into my mind that hone my efforts and increase my understanding. The last several weeks have been some of the most growing and rewarding weeks in my art education. I have noticed my work getting better and better.
(above) portrait of class mate

Here are a few things I've been doing lately.

This is a poster study of Jacques-Louis David's The Death of Marat
The idea is to do a quick painting with emphasis on capturing the same values(light and dark). I would like to start doing a poster master copy once a week.

Here is a close up

(left) This is a sketch I did on the train on my way to school. The guy slept the whole way up. It was a good exercise since I couldn't really use comparative measuring... it would have been too obvious. I'm happy how it turned out.

(right) These are copies I did out of Vanderpoel's "The Human Figure. He was an incredible drafts-man.

(left) This is one of my anatomy sketches I did on the train out of Goldfinger's Anatomy Book. I have been studying a lot of anatomy lately. Not the easiest subject... it has taken a lot of work. In the spring I will be taking a ecorche/anatomy class. We will be sculpting a skelton first and then sculpting the muscles on top of that. I'm really excited.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


I wanted to get some stuff up and show you what I did in October. The mornings are spent doing figure drawings and the afternoons, cast painting and one day a week portrait drawing.
Here's a peek.

Unfortunately, I can't seem to take a good picture of this drawing, but this was the upper portion of my figure drawing in October.

This is actually my second cast painting. The first was the mouth. Below you will see the process I went through to get to this point.

First I drew the ear. Initially I just had the basic outline and then my teacher recommended I do a wire frame type structure over my drawing. This was a great opportunity to become more familiar with the spatial structure of the form in preparation to paint.

Second I painted a quick value study. This gives me the opportunity to understand how the values relate to each other. This is another opportunity to study the cast in prepartion to paint. I'm happy with how this worked out

I wish I had taken pictures of the painting in stages of development, but it didn't happen. In any case next I transfered my drawing onto canvas and painted the cast.

Last of all here is the portrait drawing I did today. I'm not completely happy with it, but it's a step in the right direction. Right now Jacob is having us draw the portrait of the model along with skull studies from skull we have posed next to the model.

Thanks for Looking!