Wednesday, 26 June 2013


Well actually, it should read, artist's of the week, because I was most impressed by both, Abdulrahman's and Jake's, efforts  this week. Both have applied themselves and made  progress. Before I display examples of the aforementioned student's work, I have something I would like to post about my class.

I was asked this week if the class is only for hopeful amateurs wanting to break into the business. The answer I gave was, "No, it's for anyone who wants to apply themselves and have fun drawing fantasy art regardless of their current level of drawing ability". A large percentage of students who enroll have little or no experience of drawing. Sometimes I have wondered if  a basic drawing class would have been better suited to their needs but as they had been drawn to my class through an interested in fantasy art, I saw no reason why my class could not provide the same guidance as a basic introductory drawing class while at the same time allowing them to pursue  themes  within fantasy art.

To be honest, it's a real mixed bag of students. Some are students at Leeds College Of Art,  some are professionals wanting to try out something different, for others it is a release from the pressures of everyday life, whether that be a job that they are sick off, health issues (mental or physical). But I would say for a large percentage it is also, very much as social thing. Having said that, I have coached two students in getting a portfolio of work ready to take to Thought Bubble (Leeds' very own comic convention) , which resulted in them coming away with a business card from Steve Whacker (Marvel Comics Senior Editor) and later begin correspondence with  Marvel talent  coaches.  All you really need to attend my class (apart from the fees, which are nothing to do with me) is the willingness to apply yourself. If you do not posses that, then all the art gadgetry in the world will not make you a better artist . You will only get out of  the class what you are prepared to put in.

One final thing I would like to get off my chest is regarding the hindrance of an individual's artistic / creative development. I had an art student attend my class. I think he was attending just for some extra drawing experience. After a couple of weeks I noticed a smaller sketch book, on the corner of his table, that he wasn't using. I asked if I could look through it and  I found within some really amazing work. I told the student that I thought  this work is exceptional and why had he not shown me it before now. He replied, informing me that one of his main art tutors had told him to stop wasting his time and hat what he was producing had no merit. I was gobsmacked! And  angry. I could tell that this  was a natural  and truthful expression of ideas  from the student as an artist. What's more, it was very good work. The look of relief on the student's face  at having his work accepted was reward enough for my entire time teaching. I find it hard to believe that an art tutor would hinder a student's development in such a way and  I will stop teaching the day I  am  found guilty of such actions (If any students past or present feel that this is the case, I really do need to know, so please make it known)  . The student in question is Daniel Antony Newton (I hope he doesn't mind me mentioning his name), and I really do hope he has gone on to follow his dreams and achieve great things. He is very talented.

Ok, back to  two students who have definitely applied themselves. Abdulrahman (Dahmi)
The drawing on the left shows Dahmi's very first attempt in class. 6 (or so) hours later, as the drawing on the right shows, Dahmi is making progress with anatomical structure. Dahmi came to the class with  no drawing experience.

More evidence of Dahmis' progress. Keep pushing forward Dahmi. Good work.

Jake also made some substantial progress with his figure work.

This is not to suggest the other students have not applied themselves, I think it's safe to say that good work is being produced by all.  Tamsin is currently  producing a piece I am looking forward to see finished.

Remember, the most important thing is to have fun drawing and I hope my class allows this to happen.

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