Thursday, August 25, 2011

Tony Ryder Workshop - Part 2

Here are some of Tony's demos from Week 2 of his Drawing Workshop:

He focused on the structures of one area of the human head for each day. Above is the nose structure.

The eye structure. Tony always emphasized the importance of viewing the features as integrated into the whole head structure. He never started drawing an isolated feature; he drew a block-in for each drawing before closing in on the feature.

The 'muzzle' or mouth structure.

The ear structure. One important piece of information I retained was the important of representing living forms with a series of curved lines, suggesting overlapping convex forms. Tony told me that he became 'allergic' to straight lines from studying with Ted Seth Jacobs. 

The Hair structure.

As he went around the room to help out each student, he made these exquisite little doodles in the margins of our drawings:

And now, my drawing that was done from a 5-day pose. I re-started my drawing about 10 times, but persistence won in the end. 

The finished drawing. I learned some much-needed lessons about the value of patience and a lightness and sensitivity of touch(which is what I believe separates the masters from everyone else). This workshop was one of the most rewarding experiences I have ever had. If you ever get the chance to study with Tony, take it! I can't recommend it enough. 
As I have mentioned in a previous posts, Tony passes on what he learned from Ted Seth Jacobs. I highly recommend Ted's books, they are insightful and brilliant:

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Amoskeag Rock

Oil on canvas panel, 5"x7"

I used a painting knife for most of this small study. It's really handy for achieving both sharp & ragged edges. They also clean with a wipe of a rag so it's much easier to keep my color mixes pure.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Tony Ryder Workshop - Part 1

I have included some photos from week 1 of a 2-week Portrait Drawing I am currently taking with Tony Ryder. This has been a pivotal experience for me as an artist; Tony's teachings have helped to fill in some much needed gaps in my understanding of drawing and the structure of living forms. I highly recommend studying with him if you ever get the chance; he is insightful, practical, & remains faithful to the groundbreaking teachings of his former teacher Ted Seth Jacobs.

The first two hours of every day were devoted to a demo by Tony. Here's the progress of the drawing he worked on this week:

(forgive the quality, the first few pictures were taken with my cell phone)

Tony is a master at manipulating graphite. He achieves his atmospheric modeling by describing form with what he calls 'controlled linear fuzz', soft washes of tone applied with minuscule circular motions of the pencil. His approach is Vermeer-like; accurate but optical. Lines are used to describe the beautiful outer contours of forms but are subordinate to the description of the effect of light. Lines are not used when the 'fuzz' can better describe the vagueness of the small undulations in the facial structures. 

Here are some process shots of one of my 2-day drawings from class:

More to come soon! Looking forward to Week 2!