Monday, July 10, 2017

Elite Animation Sketch class.


This week I have been teaching a summer sketch class at Elite Animation, (8933 Conroy Windermere Rd, Orlando, FL 32835). I have 16 students and the goal of the class is to encourage the students to carry a sketchbook everywhere they go.  The first class we went over basic shapes and perspective and then for the afternoon we took a field trip across the street to Panera Bread. With 16 students we pretty much filled up the restaurant. It was encouraging to see many of the students using one point perspective for the first time while drawing on location. I remember when I first started drawing on location in NYC. I would circle the block multiple times until I worked up the nerve to start a sketch. Getting these kids started early means they are less likely to be concerned with sketching in public as they grow older.

For the second class, we went to a local retention pond to draw the ducks and bucolic scene. A family of ducks were very cooperative, with the mama duck and her chicks perfectly happy to pose for the intrepid young artists. It was hot however, even in the shade, so attentions wandered. One student started herding the ducks rather than sketching. It was a typical case of leading them to water but it was up to them to drink. Several students took in the entire scene and were right on task. We left a bit early to get back to the air conditioned classroom.

For the afternoon, I taught them the basic proportions of a face and then we set out to do 16 sketches in which students faced-off and did a sketch of each other. I tend to throw out the tasks rather fast and one student unfortunately got intimidated. I thought the student was acting when their head went down on the desk in agony. I later learned that another student had told him that his drawings weren't any good. I'm of the opinion that any drawing if closely observed and sincerely done has value. The interns reassured the student for a bit and then I offered a personal lesson which gave him the confidence to return to the group and start working. It was reassuring to see the student that had been crushed only an hour before laughing as the next sketch was completed. Honestly art is a game, it is challenging, but can always be fun if approached with the right attitude.

Elite Animation Academy's slogan is, "Developing young minds through the art of animation." I'm proud to be part of a team that helps keep art alive in the hearts of students here in Central Florida.


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