I got a great question awhile back from an art student-to-be.
The short answer to her question? I was using you guys as guinea pigs to see how I can transform your BRAINS.
Here’s what I really replied…
“I am experimenting a bit with the formats, but I designed this 3/hour a day experience based on some of the latest science on deep focus and re-wiring your brain.
The 3 hour block is about as long as you can optimally focus, with no distractions, for some SERIOUS brain re-wiring. I am excited to test out the theories I have been reading out in the book Deep Work by Cal Newport by putting them into action in this class. So, that’s the main difference!
The 2 hour class will not hit the full un-distracted 3 hour block as today’s class, but I will assign homework for each day during that week, so the focus would be a bit more divided. But the same material will be covered, and as always I customize the drawing subjects and mediums to each unique art student.”
I’ve been really influence by the book Deep Work, and another super-cool non-fiction book, Mastery, both of which have some exciting implications for how people can learn more deeply and more quickly.
Maybe I’m outing myself as a millennial by my amazement at what our brains seem to be capable of without the distractions built into our social-media mania lifestyles.Concentrating and focusing without distractions for 3-4 hour blocks can apparently super-charge your cognitive abilities to improve skills (like drawing!) and I wanted to try it out on my students 😉
By using this method, I hypothesized we’d be able to advance more in 2 weeks of 3 hour time chunks than in a longer session of only 2 hour classes.
It’s been a month since my experiment began, and by now I’ve been able to compare student’s growth between 2 and 3 hour class sessions.
Guess which one works best?
3 hours of deep work, just as Cal Newport discusses in his book, have made a noticeable difference in student’s ability to make significant progress in just one week.
Check out some of their work!
Although we accomplished a lot in the 2 hour class sessions, it often felt like we were leaving just as we were really getting into the groove.
Check out the videos and links above to learn more about mastering skills and working deeply! It’s so useful for all kinds of creativity.
And if you’d like to try out a 3 hour session yourself, sign up for 10 Steps to Drawing class this December or January. No classes Feb. 2018, but stay tuned for the spring schedule coming out before the new year.
Have you been having trouble making people’s eyes “look right” when you’re drawing a person who’s not looking RIGHT at you? How about just getting the facial features where they’re supposed to be in the first place? Or how to make a flat, cartoony-looking face come to life?
Bring in your portrait-drawing problems to Studio Antonelli’s Portraiture Clinic this Saturday to cure what ails your portraits!
We will cover common problems to drawing realistic faces:
-Proportions of the Facial Features
-How to draw eyes at 3 quarter angle
-How to draw profile portraits
-Adding realistic shading and light to portraits
-Extreme angles of the face (as requested)
But mostly we will be working with exactly what YOU need help with!
Please bring in any faces you have drawn that you are not satisfied with. We will pin-point problem techniques and give you step-by-step demos on how to fix them. Lots of hand-outs and reference materials will be sent home to keep your portraiture practice improving over time. Bring your sketchbook and preferred drawing materials. Materials can also be provided on request for those who don’t have materials with them in SMA. Cost: $500 pesos or $30 USD
Email email@example.com to RSVP or for more info
Fun will include but is not limited to:
-Create your own comic books
-Learn what secret ingredients you need to make your own slime
-Create a paper-mache volcano, then make it explode!
-Games, painting & sculpture building
-Visit the park, Plaza Civica, and the Botanical Gardens
Sign up now and reserve your child’s spot with a deposit. Each week is limited to 20 students max.
Price: $350/week per child (*ask about sibling & local discounts for SMA residents)
CAMP RECYCLED MATERIAL DROP-OFF
Your trash is our treasure! If you have old magazines, empty toilet paper rolls or other fun things we would re-use for camp, please drop them off for us to use to create with the kiddos! The importance of recycling, our planet, and coming together as a community are a big part of our camp.
swing by between 10:30-4:00pm at #18 San Francisco
Camp director Jessica Antonelli ran the successful “Growing Place Summer Camp” in Galveston, TX, and is a certified K-12 art teacher. Our staff includes wonderful bilingual counselors from here in San Miguel.
Past Summer Camp:
Click here to view the brochure from our past day program, The Growing Place Summer Camp in Galveston, Texas.
And a few pictures from our fun with the kids!
We were so pleased to have renowned urban sketcher James Richards teach his workshop “Sketching the Energy of Places” at Studio Antonelli.
Check out his blog here and see his photos of the trip, and some great sketches! He also offers a wonderful online sketching course and teaches workshops all over the world. Highly recommended!
“Postcards from San Miguel” 3-7:00pm Wednesday, March 15th
We’ve had the pleasure of having artist Shannon Troxler teaching Plein-Aire and Life Drawing classes this past few weeks at Studio Antonelli.
She’ll be exhibiting thirty small paintings at the gallery, a collection of oils, sketches and watercolors that capture the everyday moods of San Miguel. The paintings are small and informal, small enough to tuck into your suitcase and take home, just like a postcard.
We will provide watercolor-paper postcards and all other materials. Shannon will work on a small painting of the lovely view of San Fransisco Church. Come by and enjoy the fun!
More on Shannon:
Shannon lives in Jackson hole Wyoming where she has been a professional artist for over twenty five years. Troxler started visiting San Miguel eight years ago in search of brilliant light and saturated color. Shannon enjoys painting the intimate corners of San Miguel. Her paintings are full of bustling cafes and restaurants, arches and fountains, church facades and rooftop views. She paints from life, and can be found in out of the way corners of cafes or perched on doorsteps, sketchbook and paints in hand. Her style is impressionistic and she loves loose, painterly brushstrokes that evoke the fleeting passage of time and capture a particular moment.
Check out her work at www.shannontroxler.com
I am thrilled to be a featured artist in San Miguel de Allende’s Lokkal online magazine, terraanima.org
Click here to read the story from the Lokkal website and to check out the other fabulous artists who share the stories about their work, or enjoy the story behind the painting “Antonia in the Jardin” below.
Much thanks to Lokkal Magazine for the invitation. This piece is the completed version of one of my 10 paintings in 10 days challenge, and was featured in the Ladies of the Night art opening in September 2015 in San Miguel de Allende.
Though it is still in progress, I present to you my final painting of this challenge.
Thank you, yes you, for following along with me. Your views and comments and likes and shares lit a fire under my butt to keep on painting. I learned about myself and the practice of painting, painted some of the best paintings I’ve done, and I couldn’t have done it without you.
This painting is another from the Storyville prostitutes, whose lives across the border mirrored the lives of their Mexican counterparts. The women would all dance in the hall, turn a trick, and more often than not sit and play cards when business was slow.
Although this is a New Orleans sourced photo, I’ll be using the designs from traditional Mexican handicrafts for the pillows, and work in photo references from our Casa de la Noche show for the girls.
Now it’s time to finish off these paintings and get them ready for the show!
September 12th, 5-8 at the Bordello Galeria in Casa de la Noche, #19 Organos, San Miguel de Allende.
I have figured out what was flummoxing me in my initial paintings of these ladies of the night–texture. The gorgeous and CHEAP handmade canvas, with it’s almost 3 inch deep frame and pre-toned primer applies, has a very different texture than the usual plastic-wrapped sort I’d get at El Pato or art supply stores in the states.
The toothy, richly toned canvas is ideal for a dry brush technique, where just a tad bit of paint is scrumbled, painting in a circular motion. I originally discovered this on day 5 of the challenge, but I added too much paint and lost the lovely, delicate quality of soft-toned skin that I had fallen for just a few brush strokes ago…
That’s why Day 6 of the 10 paintings in 10 days challenge produced one of my favorite works of late-I applied what I learned in day 5.
I used the same approach for today’s painting.
The internet here in San Miguel seems to be taking a siesta…or more likely tipsy on tequila, since it’s past midnight as I clock in day 9, so I can only load this one photo of the process.
This dama had a challenging, and yet resigned look in her photo. I was inspired to put the stamp of the San Miguel health inspection stamp on her card behind her head like an off-kilter halo. She immediately became Maria for me, a fallen angel, a very different manifestation of virgin mother…or perhaps more Mary Magdalene? Her breast is bared to offer sustenance, like each Mary did in her own way, and as all women offer themselves in one way or another to create life in this world.
I’m going to cut myself a break and add all the gold I want on this one. The Klimt influence gets to flirt with italian renaissance representations of the divine feminine. Loving that learning from my mistakes this past ten days, and learning how to use my materials, has led to the creation of this Maria.