Friday, September 20, 2013

Bridge Drawing at Central Park New York City

I am now attending the New York Academy of Art. My concentration is painting. I've been busy, excited and motivated!

On weekends, I visit Central Park. I take my lawn chair, a handful of sharp Ebony pencils and 14x17 80lb Strathmore Recycled Drawing Paper. I enjoy drawing at Central Park. The park is big and the weather has been perfect. I go early to avoid the crowds. I sit in the shade and draw the bridges.
This bridge is behind the Metropolitan Museum of Art called Graywacke Arch. I like how the bridges have a really dark shadow underneath, and that small window to the other side. This bridge had a violinist playing underneath, a perfect spot because there was a lot of people traffic.

it's not just the bridge that catches my attention. I have to also include its surroundings: the big tree, the benches, the shrubs, and people. It just wouldn't be a bridge without those elements.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Violinist Portrait Drawing & Brooklyn, New York

Here’s my last drawing in Toledo, Ohio. This is Virgil who plays for the Toledo Symphony. Virgil modeled one day for the Toledo Portrait Artists. He did an excellent job holding the pose.

I was feeling good at this session. I created two nice drawings within two hours, I was hoping to draw more but including his hand and violin in my drawing slowed me down.  Usually I just sketch the portrait but I wanted to sketch that hand and violin. Here’s when I had a great time working on this piece. I like when models wear glasses or hats or when they are holding something, so drawing the hands and top part of the violin was awesome! It adds more to the drawing, and makes it a bigger challenge. For me this is three drawings in one, the portrait, the hand and the violin, all three needed special attention.

I wish I had bigger paper for this drawing. I really wanted to keep drawing the bottom part of the violin and the other hand holding the bow. I could have sketched smaller but when I do that it loses detail and I like drawing bold and sitting up close.

I stayed focused on these drawings because we only had one 2-hr session with model. When I felt finished with the drawing, I quickly tried to sketch a profile drawing in 30 minutes. Virgil played for us at the end of class: Meditation by Thais. It was beautiful, a real treat for the artist.  Thank you, Virgil.

So I’m now living in Brooklyn, New York. I’ve got a nice place to stay, and I'm now attending classes at the New York Academy of Art! I’ll be posting my school work.

Goodbye Toledo, I will miss you, and hello New York, I’m ready for a new adventure.

Monday, July 8, 2013

The Best Figure Drawing In Toledo!

As far as I'm concerned the best figure drawing sessions in town is at Paul Geiger's Tholipon Press Studio in Toledo Ohio! I was there Wednesday evening and I produced some nice pieces. I should be giving all the credit to the model. He was excellent.

Again I sketched on newsprint paper using vine charcoal and General's 2B charcoal pencils. I'm really enjoying this medium. The session starts with a 5 minute pose so I need to work quickly, the vine charcoal is great for this because it's soft and I can quickly draw a gesture sketch of the figure, just a quick general shape of the pose. As soon as I feel I have all the basic shapes of the model I switch to the General's charcoal pencils and begin to add more detail until the time runs out. I did this for the 5, 15, 30 and 60 minute poses, the more time I had the more detail I added. By the time I reach the 30 minute pose I'm warmed up and in the drawing zone. It's a blissful feeling.


Thursday, July 4, 2013

Portrait drawing of Michelle

I attended the Al Hyter Portrait Group last Saturday morning. It was our model’s last day. The models pose four to five weekends in a row so you get to know the model. Michelle did an excellent job holding the pose still and was fun to talk to during breaks.

As always I got up as close as possible to the model to get as much detail as I can. There’s one thing that drove me nuts on this pose and that was the hand. Drawing hands is tough; getting them right is even harder. I feel I got it right on the larger image above. I might have sketched it too big, but I think it works well on the model when drawing from this angle.

I had a good time producing these two pieces. Plus Bruce, the coordinator, played some good tunes, and I had some good laughs with the other whimsical artists. I will miss this group when I go to NY.


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

80 Minute Portrait Drawing

Here's a recent portrait drawing from the Al Hyter Portrait group. Usually I change drawing positions on every 20-minute pose, but lately I've been wanting to slow down and spend more time per drawing. Last week I sketched 40 minutes per drawing, but on this portrait I spent 80 minutes, the entire drawing session. It gave me more time to focus on all over details and building of darks and lights.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Figure Drawing on Fire!

I was on fire last night at Paul Geiger's figure drawing session. We had a good model, good group and good music.

I used 18 x 24 news print paper with Vine charcoal and General's 2B Charcoal Pencils. I created some nice drawings!

The best part for me in this session was the deep dark lines. I got nice thin rich black lines with the sharp tips on the General's pencils. Perfect for drawing shapes and giving illusion of depth.

Below I included a picture Paul took of the figure drawing group. It's a perfect space for figure drawing. Thanks again Paul for the snacks at break and the good tunes. I especially liked the music by Tanita Tikaram.

Paul Geiger Studio -


Sunday, June 9, 2013

African American Woman Portrait Drawing

 I created some nice drawings at the Sunday morning Al Hyter portrait group. They have a new model. She's wearing a beautiful dress from Nigeria Africa.

A lot of artists attended so space was limited. I started my warmup with a side profile drawing. Then I was able to squeeze in front to draw a 3/4 profile. As always, I sat as close as possible to the model to see all the details of eye, nose, lips, ears.

I treated these drawings a little differently. Recently I finished updating my online illustration portfolio on and noticed subtle changes in my drawing style. My older drawings seem to have more emphasis on technique: clean sketch lines, and more contrast between lights and darks.

So at this session I spent 40 minutes per drawing instead of 20 minutes. I slowed down to focus on my technique, and I kept using  sharp pencils to get nice clean dark lines in the details. I'm happy with the results. I'm looking forward to next week's session.


Monday, June 3, 2013

Figure Drawing with Charcoal Pencils

I attended Paul Geigers figure drawing session on Wednesday. This time I used some different materials and medium. I purchased 18"x24" Strathmore Newsprint paper (300 series). I also bought 2B General's Charcoal pencils and soft vine charcoal. These materials are a perfect combo. The Newsprint paper has a nice rough surface so when drawing with sharp charcoal pencils I get beautiful rich dark lines. It's been so long since I've sketched with charcoal. I had forgotten the feel and sound charcoal makes when it strikes the paper. Felt like I was coming home.

We had a good model, I sketched many pieces in charcoal. Here are a couple drawings that challenged me.

So, good art materials, good model and of course good music. Paul played The Beatles White Album. Awesome tunes for drawing. Thanks again Paul for the music and the drawing sessions.


Monday, May 27, 2013

Portrait Drawing Up Close

I had a good drawing session at the Saturday morning Al Hyter portrait group. Model dressed in costume with her face painted. I got up close to her so I can sketch the details on her face. I often do this. It makes a big difference in my drawings; there is so much more information on the eyes, nose, lips, chin, ears.

Bruce, the coordinator, brought in nice music. One of them is a favorite for everyone: The Sound of Music with Julie Andrews. Nice combo for drawing, had everyone humming the tunes.


Thursday, May 23, 2013

Figure Drawing Reclining Nude

Last Wednesday I attended Paul Geigers figure drawing session. I created a lot of nice drawings. I wish I could share them all. I picked these two. They were the most challenging and I believe I learned a few lessons from these two.

The challenge for the top drawing was drawing the figure to fit the length of the page while her arm was in vertical position.

The foreshortening is off on the bottom drawing. I made the torso too long. She was reclining back more.


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Portrait Study, Man with Russian Hat

I haven't posted in a while. Again I get busy and time just goes by. I haven't been drawing much on my own either. Hopefully that will change soon. I start art school at New York Academy of Art September 3rd! I'm getting ready and that should include more drawing and painting before I go.

I've been attending the Saturday morning Al Hyter portrait sessions. Here's a portrait I enjoyed creating. The model wore a Russian hat. It had a nice shape so I exaggerated the features and size of the hat, it was just fun to draw.

I'm going to miss my Saturday morning portrait drawing group. I'll keep in touch to share my new art adventure in New York!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Kitchen Table Fruit & Wine Still Life

Here's a recent still life drawing I created in my kitchen. Often the kitchen table is full of fruit and other kitchen stuff, so I grab my chair and look for a composition that I like and I start drawing. I might move a couple items but not too much because I want that random everyday living or everyday kitchen table feeling.

I have fun creating these drawings, they are challenging because there are so many shapes and the drawing page gets full. Hopefully my drawing can communicate clearly what I see.


Sunday, March 31, 2013

Two Portrait Drawings

Two drawings I wanted to share with you from yesterday's portrait session. I was looking forward to this all week, I've been working a lot of hours and haven't had time to sit and draw. I arrived early and of course the model I wanted to draw showed up late, Haha!

It worked out fine because they had two models scheduled. I sketched the male model until the female model dressed in 60s theme arrived.

Drawing the man was a good warm up, I had fun with it, except I think I sketched the eyes too close, something about it just doesn't feel right. I still have much to learn.

The young woman's drawing is nice except for a few spots. I wanted to sketch full figure on big paper, so it took me a lot longer. Proportions are a little off. Head might be a little too big, right hand too small, a couple things here and there but I'm okay with it. I enjoyed creating and completing this piece.

It was a good and much needed drawing session, plus they played Motown music and I enjoyed the funny and interesting stories from the elders. Next Saturday, two new models.


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Beatles Abby Road & Charcoal

Okay, there's nothing better then figure drawing to Beatles album Abbey Road! What a combo!!

I just returned from Paul Gieger's figure drawing session and had a great time, every drawing was a winner. They started with short 5 minute poses. This time I used vine charcoal to warm up. I haven't used vine charcoal in a long time. It felt good: it's soft, easy to apply, and has a rich black color. I got nice results and it inspired me to buy some charcoal pencils.

I used to draw a lot in charcoal then switched to graphite because it was easier, inexpensive, and not messy. Maybe it's time to make a switch back to charcoal plus if I'm planning on going to grad school, charcoal will be the medium of choice for drawing.

Bianca, our model, did a great job with her poses. I want to scan all my drawings and share them with you. Here are a few from tonight's session.

Thanks again, Paul, for the awesome music and wine/snacks at break time.


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Young Woman and Guitar, Art School

Here's a portrait drawing from the Saturday morning portrait group I attend. They have a new model; she's dressed 60s theme. I like the pose because she's wearing glasses, head scarf, fluffy coat and has her hand on a cool little guitar. It's great for drawing.

Drawing the portrait is fun but it's more fun and challenging when the model wears interesting clothing and items. I'm looking forward to next Saturday's session. I'll try from a different angle to get more of the guitar in the pose.

This past week I visited New York City and Philadelphia. I was accepted at the schools I applied to, so now I have to make a decision. It's not easy.  I visited the New York Academy of Art, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and Studio Incamminati.  Incredibly impressive art schools. I was hoping to return home with an easy decision but not the case, hopefully soon one will feel right.