I can't believe it! I just wrote a lengthy post and then accidently deleted it! So... here it is rewritten as best I can, but I bet it will be shorter than the original. (Don't look so relieved!)
I have been thinking a lot about what direction my artwork is taking lately. Last night I perused the internet looking at my favorite artists' work. I chanced upon an artist that a couple of years ago I was enrolled in his academy of art, Jeff Heins.
I recalled that at the beginning of 2007 I set a goal to improve my basic skills. At that time I saw Jeff's artwork and set a goal to take a workshop or something from him that year. I signed up for his newsletter. A couple of months later two things happened simultaneously; I had terrific sales in a gallery I was in, and Jeff made an announcement in his newsletter concerning his Art Academy and that there were a couple of spots open.
I jumped at the chance to get into the academy. His principle teaching is based on the historical french schools of art. You begin in the academy with perfecting your drawing skills (yes, I said perfecting!) by drawing plaster cast busts. It was tedious work! You could spend weeks on one bust until Jeff approved you to go on to the next. Also there was a life drawing class once a week as well. The purpose of these exercises were to train your eye and hand to get the correct dimensions of what you were drawing. Then once you got that down, you could progress to another basic element in fine art.
To get the most out of my tuition I dedicated 3 days a week to working at the academy on my drawing skills. A couple of months passed and some career opportunities came along for me. I was accepted into the Park City Arts Festival, which was held the first weekend in August, and I also signed up to be a partner in a management run coopeative, as well as accepted the postion of vice president of the Utah Watercolor Society. All this and make my daily living off my art. Crazy me! (word of advice, don't volunteer for two major time commitments at once).
Needless to say, I couldn't do everthing I signed up for so something had to go. I decided there was no way I could do my studies at the art academy justice, so after three months I had to drop out with a promise to come back someday.
Well, after two years, with my term as the president of the Utah Watercolor Society just ended, and my commitment to the management of the gallery ending at the end of this month, I am taking up where I left off. Except I can't rejoin the academy (thanks economy!) just yet. I can, however, work on what I was taught there and study the books that Jeff recommended. I will just have to do a home self study course as best I can for now.
The image above is the first bust I drew at the academy. Unfortunately I don't have any plaster busts around the house, so I will have to draw something else. Maybe my fuzzy cat will do. I am also going to take a life drawing session once a week. It doesn't have an instructor, you just go and draw for $7 a session.
Well that's it, I have been thinking my goals out loud here... at least I have a focus. I wonder where it will take me?