Color TRACK: Lesson 5

Prompt Start a painting with an underpainting, using the complementary colors of the objects in the image. For example, in the painting below, the blue area in the underpainting was chosen because eventually the orange of the lobster will be painted over the blue. complementary colorS red & green blue & orange yellow & purple […]

Portrait TRACK: Lesson 4

Prompt Create a portrait that expresses an emotional mood by using an unrealistic color scheme. For some people it can be helpful to have a specific word to refer to the mood: sullen, perky, whimsical, livid, energetic, etc. Look up the word in the dictionary to get ideas for how you might represent your portrait. […]

Color TRACK: Lesson 4

Prompt Create an artwork that depicts a scene at night. Consider how different types of lighting (natural light vs. artificial light) interact within a night scene. Explore the visual qualities of the night as well as the narrative elements behind this specific time of day. Inspiration Lauryn Welch Examples Helen Cook, Croooolik, Anna, Neil Espinosa […]

Portrait TRACK: Lesson 3

Prompt Paint a self-portrait from life, using only a palette knife. Painting from Life We understand that painting from life often doesn’t feel as easy or convenient as working from a photograph. Seeing colors in real life is actually easier than observing a photograph, where colors lose their sophistication and nuances. Painting from life provides […]

Color TRACK: Lesson 3

Prompt Create a collage using hand painted papers to create a portrait of a room where you live. This prompt is all about how to play with color through shapes and patterns. Choosing a room Take several rooms under consideration, and think about which has the most visual potential to explore color, pattern, and shape. […]

Color TRACK: Lesson 2

Prompt Choose 1 complementary color pair, and create a painting that only uses that complementary color pair. Red & Green Blue & Orange Yellow & Purple Subject Matter The subject matter is up to you! We do recommend, if you can, to paint from life. When you can observe in real life, you’ll see colors […]

Portrait TRACK: Lesson 2

Prompt Draw a skull inside a head as a means of figuring out where bony landmarks and muscles align. Examples Jen Noelle, Triplegem, Anastasia, Ashley Tanelle, Tent Goals The objective of this prompt is to see past the surface of the face and start to look at the head structurally so you can identify bony […]

Drawing Portraits with Conté Crayon

Art Prof Clara Lieu demonstrates how to do drawings of a heads using Conté Crayon. Prof Lieu explains how sketch the essential bony structures of the skull, and then how to knock in big patches of tone to give the head mass and weight. Watch the 3 min. version Watch the 5 min. version Watch the 2 hour version Video […]

Portrait TRACK: Lesson 1

Prompt Draw 3 sets of 5-10 min. drawings which address line and tone. Include the head and neck. Set 1: line only Set 2: tone only Set 3: line + tone Aim to draw 12 heads per set, for a total of 36 head drawings. Prof Lieu, Jordan Reference Photos Portraits by Photographers Portraits, Children […]

Color TRACK: Lesson 1

Prompt Create 3 color charts, for each complementary color pair: red & green blue & orange yellow & purple This color chart is very effective in terms of training your eye to see subtle shifts of color, to develop a more sensitive color mixing technique, and mixing different levels of saturation with the opposite color instead of […]

Portrait Track

The Portrait Track is an opportunity to immerse yourself into the tremendous world of the human face. Throughout the centuries, portraits have represented every facet of the human experience. Lesson 1 • Lesson 2 • Lesson 3Lesson 4 • Lesson 5 • Lesson 6 We’ll take a deep dive into the basic structures of the human face as a premise for the vast […]

Premium Tracks Tuition Info

We get a lot of questions regarding the high tuition fee for the premium tracks, so I’d like to be transparent about where those numbers come from. We are well aware that our tuition fees are higher than the average online art class or local in person art class. To understand why that is the […]

Portrait Curriculum

The complete Portrait Curriculum for Self-taught Artists is a series of 3 videos. We have a Portrait Track which is a sequence of structured video lessons and assignments that you can do at your own pace. Our Portraiture Premium Track provides guidance and support through weekly voice sessions and critiques from the Art Prof staff. Portraits 1: Types of Portraits […]

MFA Portfolios TRACK: Lesson 4

MFA interviews Getting an interview is great news! This means the school is interested in your candidacy and they want to know more about you as an artist. That said, interviews are always nerve-wracking! Practicing what to say out loud, and how to say it is a great way to prepare. practice questions Why do […]

MFA Portfolios TRACK: Lesson 3

Artist Curriculum Vitae Write your curriculum vitae, which is a comprehensive list of your work experience, exhibition history, awards, residencies, publications, and more. curriculum vitae tips The toughest part of writing a curriculum vitae is what to include, and what to remove. Start by writing down literally everything, it’s better to start with too much […]

Anatomy TRACK: Lesson 6

Prompt Do a sustained drawing of a torso that focuses on lighting as a means of emphasizing the volume and form. Use any drawing style you want, this video uses smudging to create soft shadows, whereas this video uses cross-hatching to build the shadows. tips Keep on eye on what the centerline is doing; it’s […]

Anatomy TRACK: Lesson 5

Prompt Draw 6 hours of 5-20 min. gesture drawings of poses that show foreshortening. Emphasize bony landmarks, especially the joints in the arms and legs. Foreshortening can be extremely dramatic, or it can be very subtle, sometimes it’s barely there! Aim to bring out the foreshortening anywhere you can. tips Search for overlaps in the […]

Anatomy TRACK: Lesson 4

Prompt Draw 6 hours of 5-20 min. gesture drawings of full figures that emphasize tone to show the volume and form of the human figure. Think about the process as if you were sculpting a figure in 3D. Muscles are rarely confined to a single point of view, many “wrap” around the figure from one […]

Anatomy TRACK: Lesson 3

Prompt Draw a skeleton inside a figure in order to see where bony landmarks and muscles align. Remember that this prompt is not about accuracy, and it’s not about making a beautiful drawing. In fact, it’s pretty much guaranteed that your drawing is going to be pretty wonky in terms of being anatomically correct! The […]

Anatomy TRACK: Lesson 2

Prompt Do 6 hours of gesture drawings of hands and feet. 3 hours of feet, 2-15 min. drawings 3 hours of hands, 2-15 min. drawings We recommend making the hands and feet in your drawings at least life size or larger. reference images We have many photos of hands and feet in our free reference […]

Anatomy TRACK: Lesson 1

Prompt Complete six hours in total of gesture drawings of figures. A huge part of figure drawing is simply logging the “pencil mileage” and developing the muscle memory. 3 hours of 2 min. drawings 3 hours of 5 min. drawings REFERENCE IMAGES Eadward Muybridge‘s book The Human Figure in Motion Free downloads of Muybridge Stills, […]

Character Design TRACK: Lesson 4

Prompt Color one of your characters using 3 different color schemes. Consider your character, what colors will help tell your character’s story and background? Color is not just a visual experience, it is a story telling tool as well! Tips Traditional: place tracing paper over your drawing and draw the colors on the tracing paper. […]

Character Design TRACK: Lesson 5

Prompt Complete a 3/4 front pose and 3/4 rear pose for your character. Optional: front, back and side poses. Be willing to push your expressions and angles in your figures. Aim for a very wide range of emotions and try not to let any two look the same. Don’t pick random emotions, show emotions that […]

Character Design TRACK: Lesson 3

Prompt Draw one of your own characters in 3-5 contrasting styles. You can reference styles from TV shows and movies if you like. Experiment with shape language and story elements to create the different styles. Examples James, Steen, Crissie, Robyn, Tamara Living Library Blog This blog has production artwork from movies and shows that are […]

Character Design TRACK: Lesson 2

Prompt Choose an occupation/title for your character. Draw 6 thumbnail sketches of your character that portray their occupation/title. Be as specific as possible with your character’s occupation. If your character is a teacher, what subject do they teach? Do they teach elementary school students, or continuing education students? What type of school does your character […]

Character Design TRACK: Lesson 1

Prompt Explore shape language by sketching 3 characters from other popular designs. Use a broad range of shapes to communicate the feeling of each character being cute, strong and dangerous. You’ll do a total of 9 drawings. Inspiration: TV series Steven Universe, Inside Out, SpongeBob Squarepants, Powerpuff girls, Samurai Jack, Chowder, Fairly Odd Parents, Carmen […]

MFA Portfolios TRACK: Lesson 2

Prompt Write 3 artist statements of varying lengths, that provide insight into your art practice and materials. You can write the statements so they encompass your overall practice, or statements that are focused on one specific project. 1 sentence statement This is your elevator pitch: what if you have 2 min. with someone at an […]

MFA Portfolios TRACK: Lesson 1

Prompt Self-critique the current state of your portfolio and create a plan of action for how you will develop your portfolio. Weed out class assignments Any artworks that are obviously assignments from a class should be removed: sketches of a nude model posing in class, color exercises, a still life that an instructor set up […]

Student Gallery: Digital Basics Track Prompts

Our free Digital Basics Track pushes students to develop skills in digital drawing and painting techniques while experimenting with a range of styles, color schemes, and textures. Texture Cubes Create 8 cubes that each have the texture of a real life object. Try to choose as many different textures and colors as you can! Artworks by […]

Drawing a Skeleton Inside a Figure

A great exercise for learning anatomy as an artist is drawing a skeleton inside a figure drawing. By drawing the skeleton as you draw the human figure, you are able to see the connections between the figure. Explained are the various bony landmarks, providing a fundamental understanding of how the skeletal structure in a figure […]

Comics Basics TRACK: Lesson 3

Prompt Create a 4 panel comic based on a birthday party you had at some point in your life. comics techniques Point of View Portraying the passing of time Backgrounds Props art media Use any art media you want: digital and/or traditional art media. Consider beforehand whether you want to do a black and white […]

Comics Basics TRACK: Lesson 2

Prompt Create a comic that has animal sounds in the narrative. What will get an animal or create to make a sound? Example: a person steps on a cat’s tail, so the cat yowls. The comic can be of any length, any number of panels. You can use keyboard symbols for this prompt: numbers, letters, […]