Good morning, students. I hope that you had lovely, productive weekends, and that you’re excited about today’s lesson.
Before we begin, I want to allay a concern that I’ve heard whispered on campus, a worry that the hard work present in your homework may be going unnoticed. The Tutor wants you to know that this is not true.
My six-legged teacher’s aides and I have personally viewed each and every submission thus far, and we are pleased. I’ve stood outside many of your windows at night watching you work, nodding my head in silent approval. Even those of you with “mysterious” accents, separated by great bodies of water, should anticipate surprise visits from time to time.
The point being: we’re all in this together, and The Tutor recognizes that in a world full of “normals”, we artists are different. This difference often leads to feelings of isolation. In these instances, encouragement is critical, so pat each other on the backs, pupils; you’re doing great work!
In this class, great work is not only encouraged, but also rewarded… so expect some treats on the very near horizon. For starters, I’m happy to announce a special appearance and presentation by The Tutor during San Diego’s Comic-Con in July. Stay tuned for more details.
In the meantime, let’s get on with this week’s tutorial: I give you Lesson V: Posing Our Subject:
Felicitations, pupils! You’ve clinched another class. This week’s homework assignment is to set up a still life. In the weeks to come, we will create a painting based on this display. While this assignment may seem straightforward, keep the following considerations in mind:
Firstly: choose a subject (or subjects) that not only interests you, but is appropriate to your skill level: if you’re a beginner, consider choosing something that’s visually simple; advanced students may wish to pick something more complex. A still life can be as basic as a teacup or as nuanced as a warehouse full of mannequins.
Secondly: position you still life near your organized workspace. You should be able to comfortably view your subject while having unobstructed access to your tools.
Thirdly: situate your still life in such a way that it will not be moved or disturbed. We will be spending the next few weeks drawing and painting this display, so we can’t have it changing before we’re done. If a permanent display is not possible within your workspace, considering marking the placement of objects with tape so that your still life can be easily and accurately recreated. A reference photograph wouldn’t hurt either.
Lastly: not only does your display need to be still and consistent, but so does the lighting on your still life. To do this, you will need to set up a specific light source—a directed lamp, for example. Use lighting that creates interesting shadows and highlights on your subject. These contrasting values will be crucial as we begin to paint in later lessons.
As always, submit your completed assignment within this lesson plan. Please refer to the “Homework” link above for more details. See you next week!