Category: art classes

Mentorship Slots Available!

EDIT: I’ve updated the Casual Mentorship after some feedback. Now with more bang for your buck!  Also added a more in-depth explanation of exactly what the Portfolio Review and Art Marketing sessions would involve.

Last year, I tentatively opened up the Creative Consulting section of my website.  Now, I’m excited to roll out Mentorship slots via my Patreon reward tiers!  I’ve had a few requests from other artists who wanted to have a deeper educational experience than my painting critiques, which I offer via redlines and paint overs.  I’m currently offering two types of mentorships:

The Casual Mentorship

You will receive:

  • A monthly personalized 30 minute long Portfolio Review OR Art Marketing Consultation (EDIT: changed this previously from being a one-time session). You may also pay for additional sessions separately (see my rates here).
  • A single paint-over per month for your work in need of critique!  Additional paint-overs can be purchased separately (see my rates here).  A narrated video of your critique will be recorded and uploaded privately for you to view at your leisure on my YouTube channel. Paint-over videos will be fully detailed, providing advice and study resources. See an example of how detailed my critiques can be here.
  • A .PSD of your paintover which you’re free to use as a base will also be sent to you!
  • I am YOUR personal Art Cheerleader!  I’m at YOUR disposal when you need advice!  E-mail me any time and I will give you advice on studying, resources, and other art-related topics.

The Full Mentorship

You will receive:

  • A monthly personalized hour long Portfolio Review OR Art Marketing Consultation. You may alternate which one you prefer each month.
  • Up to three paint-overs a month for your work in need of critique! A narrated video of your critique will be recorded and uploaded privately for you to view at your leisure on YouTube. Paint-over videos will be fully detailed, providing advice and study resources. See an example of how detailed my critiques can be here –
  • You will also receive a .PSD of your paintover which you’re free to use as a base.
  • Just like the Casual Mentorship, I’m at YOUR disposal when you need advice on studying, resources, etc.!

EDIT:  What are the Portfolio Review and Art Marketing Sessions?

The Portfolio Review and Art Marketing sessions would be hour long online chats that we have together via Hangouts or Skype to discuss your needs during the mentorship.  The Portfolio Review would focus on your art and any concerns you have related to your work and techniques while the Art Marketing session would be mainly focused on your business and marketing efforts.

If there happens to be time left after we’ve discussed the primary topic, we can always talk about other things, but I like to keep the sessions focused on a primary concern so as not to overwhelm us with information.

Extra, Extras!

In addition to the mentorship perks, you’ll receive a slew of other goodies I’m offering via Patreon that come with my Mentorship reward tiers, including wallpapers of my art, monthly tutorial videos, and more!  See the Rewards section of my Patreon page for the full details on what other rewards are included.

I’m only offering a limited number of slots right now so I can make sure that each student will have the dedicated attention they deserve, but this may change in the future, should this venture prove successful!  For those who might be new to my work and would like to know more about my credentials, you can read more about my experience here.

Have any questions or comments?  Feel free to comment on this journal or email me!

Proko’s Figure Drawing Fundamentals – Lesson 2 Homework


You can watch the free version of this lesson here!
However, the premium version is longer and more resources and examples are provided.

Beans, beans, BEANS!  I’m continuing my lessons with Proko’s Figure Drawing Fundamentals class with the lesson on simplifying the motion of the torso.  When I first saw this exercise, I kind of laughed to myself.  What could a bean tell us about the torso?  Wasn’t this too simple?

I wasn’t saying that later when I was about 70 beans in and I realized that there was so much more information being transmitted in this exercise than I realized.  When a torso bends and twists, creases and tension are expressed in various ways.  This is such a subtle lesson in physics that can really bring volume to your figure drawings!  Here’s an example with a current work-in-progress of mine.


The first pose is very straight forward and also very stiff, while the second pose pushes the dynamism a bit more, but still seems so stiff.  I employed the ‘bean’ method in the 3rd pose to try and capture the subtle twist and lean of the torso combined with the foreshortening of the lower camera angle.  Already, the pose is looking much better and has more weight to it than the others, which didn’t quite pay respect to the physics of the torso.

And now the beans! Here’s a sketch dump of all of the ones I sketched for this lesson.  I’ve been doing the recommended 100 sketches before moving on from a lesson.

The biggest challenge for me was figuring out how the creases turn when a torso is twisting.  I have no advice on this issue except to practice and observe!  Foreshortening, torsion, and eye level play a big part in what overlaps what and I am only scratching the surface of this concept, even after drawing this many beans.

I also believe that learning something so subtle as this requires practicing and drawing, rather than reading advice about doing it.  It just kind of clicks in your brain when practicing, which is why I think in this case drawing numerous sketches like Proko recommends to be very useful (and essential)!

I’m definitely excited to move on to the Robo Bean, which is the next step up in complexity from this base form in a later lesson.

Of course, I couldn’t help having a little fun by the end of this assignment illustrating random bean puns.  A cookie for you if you can guess which ones they are!

Previous Lesson:  Gesture
Next Lesson: Structure Basics (coming Soon!)

Entering Oatley Academy

I was awed and amazed recently when my family pitched in to help cover my tuition to join in at The Oatley Academy, specifically the “Painting Drama” class.  For those who don’t know him, Chris Oatley has done character designs for Disney, as well as taught in the animation and concept art industry for some time.  His website contains some very handy guides of pointed advice for concept artists and animators that I highly recommend.

Prior to this class, I discovered Chris through his inspirational posts, which had been whispered here and there by various artists on my Twitter feed.  Although he may be more focused in animation, something about Chris struck me.

He seemed to know exactly what was on my mind and what fears I was struggling with at the time I was reading his short and sweet newsletter emails.  His posts seemed to aim at the heart of what holds artists back, rather than echoing the emphasis on techniques that most classes and art blogs do.

I learned about Painting Drama after attending one of Chris’ online portfolio parties, in which he blitzed through various portfolios offering advice.  He spoke of his class during the party and how it focused on what it takes to really and truly tell a story visually.  I was intrigued once more because that is exactly what I believe is missing in my own work.  When it comes to telling a story with my art, I am that person that doesn’t know how to tell a joke.  I get it all out of order and then mess up the punchline. Ironic, because I can’t tell a joke in real life either.  Ask me to tell one if you ever meet me and hilarious fail will ensue.

So here I am nearly at the end of week 1 of Painting Drama and I have to say it’s exactly what I wanted, so far.   Chris’ lessons are like a motivational course mixed with thought-provoking discussions of what creates drama within paintings in the first place.  As an example, lesson 1 threw me for a loop by asking some important questions –  What fears are blocking me from succeeding and what are my strengths, if I were in my ideal state as an Illustrator?

Those simple initial prompts were far harder to answer than I thought they would be.

Already, I am facing my fears as an artist head-on, but also learning what my strengths really are, as well as what my goals are.  I may have been able to discover these things on my own, but it’s always helpful to have someone asking the tough questions we might be afraid to ask ourselves.

If there’s one thing that’s being cast in sharp relief for me lately with this class, it’s that nearly all fields of storytelling involving Creative Professionals are connected.  In literature, we ‘show’, we don’t ‘tell’, in creating an artistic composition, it is just the same. We show the narrative, we don’t just cast a boring, straightforward angle of the action.  We create emotion through composition.

To think, I paid twice as much for college courses that never touched on these vastly important topics.  That makes his class even more of a good deal, in my eyes. ($488 total tuition, or 3 monthly payments of $188).

Soon there will be a referral link for each student so I can invite you all in and also get referral bonuses to help cover my own class tuition (as I fully intend to come back for some of Chris’ other courses in the future).  Once the referral links go live, I will definitely be posting mine here for any of you who might be interested in joining up, but who also wouldn’t mind helping me make back tuition either.  In my eyes, this is so well worth the money and I cannot recommend it enough!

Expect more personal revelations posted here as the class goes on.  For now, onward to my ‘audacious accomplishment’!