March 31, 2017


Time for another fun Vlog episode!

Humbled, sitting on the floor of my studio, bringing you episode 45 sweat equity. I want to give a glimpse behind the scenes of what it makes to make the show go. It has been my first month in operation with paying students and it is going really well. I’ve seen the growth and achievements of my students already using my teaching methods. Hard work and discipline as well as focused study are the name of the game. Having goals in mind in which you aim to achieve will help you attain them. You can’t just walk through the doors of the atelier and take an art class, thinking that you are going to walk out a Michelangelo. We are in fact our own worst critics.  There is a lot of mental play going on. We need to train the eye. I don’t think so much that I am an art teacher in terms of technical skill and craft but a teacher who teachers people how to see.

You can’t know what you don’t know, its my job as teacher to guide you to help lift the veil and introduce new ways of seeing things differently.  It is up to you to continue to develop, to show up and do the work. I can’t make your art for you, only you can. And through time and with diligence you will arrive to where you are going and afterward you will definitely have a whole new vision for what is possible and I assure you, you will get there more quickly than you expect if you continue to work out and once there you will not believe the doors that open up to you creatively.  In regards to the future, it was bill gates who stated:

We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten. Don't let yourself be lulled into inaction.

I often use the metaphor of a gym when explaining the curriculum at the atelier. We come to work out our eye hand and brain muscles as we continue to strengthen our skills. This is where your sweat equity pays off. Artists tend to not think like athletes but we should, thats the way to achieving that gold medal and creative success.

In terms of my efforts, Im still working every single day of the week. I feel like a one man army, teaching, making these videos, updating the website and blog. I need to plan and prep my classes. Most nights I work at ACAD or QAS. I am at the atelier at 8 am and I usually don’t get home until later than 10:30 or 11 at night. Thats a long day but Im doing what I love, building my dream and passionately creating, teaching and living all the while. Some week-ends Im at Swintons doing samplers. They say all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Im anything but dull.

You may get some inkling of the real deal by now. Im here a lot and a big part of my job is being a great host and mostly humbly mopping the floors. Its not all glamour but when it is like last Friday when I offered my space to host the Peoples portrait prize party and it was a huge hit!

My students and I showed work and my pal Cosmic Lurkn spun tunes, Danielle (another non drinker) served up the beers and at the end I cleaned up throughout the night. I was beat by the end but I’m glad I did it on behalf of all those artists who exhibited and the organizers involved in putting it on. I like big clean spaces, After another mopping session I look forward to the next event, another opportunity to have a great time in the temple of creativity I’ve built. Keep posted and next time join me won’t you?

Check out the website as new stuff and updates come down the pipe:

Still life studies

We sat down for a lecture about warm up protocol at the Atelier before beginning a look at light and the study of still life. A video crew came in to capture some shots for the new cSPACE King Edward website. I look forward to seeing what they do with it. Below are some snaps from my cellphone during the day session. I am so proud of this class, if you'd like to join in the fun visit my website

I also subbed a teen still life class at ACAAD and drew this mannequin hand as my demo.

March 29, 2017

Final Figure drawing @ ACAD winter semester

We just finished our final figure drawing class of 7 for the winter semester at ACAD. The students got in some poses with model Angie and hung some of their work for a final constructive criticism discussion (not a critique) at the end. This session we focused on landmarks, structure and forms in proportion. Next session beginning in May I will cover muscles and beneath surface forms. Take a look at some of their pieces.

If you are interested in taking figure drawing at ACAD go down the page on this link and contact the ACAD con Ed department to reserve your spot.  LINK HERE:

If you are interested in studying with me at the atelier or just dropping in for Long pose figure drawing sessions on Wednesday evenings you can go to

March 27, 2017

Drawing 1 figure drawing 2

We had our second figure drawing session with my Alberta College of Art and Design Drawing 1 group. I taught many different ways of seeing and how to change up how we apply marks to the paper.  Here are a few of the drawings from later in the session. Check out the students progress.

 Get out of your normal ways of working and try to challenge yourself with something different.

 Where's the progress if you always play it safe? 

March 25, 2017

EPISODE 44 People are Awesome!!!

Things are coming together just in time for the #peoplesportraitprize at cSPACE this week-end. In this Episode #44, I talk about why I think people are awesome, and they are and I talk about this weeks uplifting visits, I got flowers sent to me and add a bit of fun with #justaddzebras. Have a watch.

My art school:

Where to get art supplies:


March 23, 2017

Starting still life studies

We worked on proper proportions, drawing through and planning the composition and drawing of still life objects in the Studio/Atelier.

March 22, 2017

Drawing fully figured

It is nearly my last figure drawing session at ACAD on Tuesday nights. We did a longer pose with Karen. The students have really made leaps since we began. Here are some of the pieces made during our last session.

There is another figure drawing session that I am instructing at ACAD in May. We are going to study the surface and muscles in the upcoming semester. Look for it on their site through the Continuing Education department.  Find out more here:

March 20, 2017

Portrait of Mario

It been awesome working at my studio with Martinho and Douglas Friday afternoons. We are painting from life and are paying a model to sit for these sessions.

I was feeling rusty with my oil skills on this one as the blank white canvas stored back at me. I know all to well what it feels like. It took a few sittings to get comfortable with my palette again.
I scraped down the paining from 2 sessions and redrew and started over because I was unhappy wit how it turned out. But now things are going my way. This bit took me around 2.5 hrs. One more sitting and I should have it wrapped up.

I made the hat much larger on the top and will hopefully keep it that way. I need to bring down the eye on the far side and do all the detailing etc, but for not the oil will just get muddy so it is best to let it dry and attack it again next session, just in time before the opening of the Peoples Portrait Prize this Saturday 6 - 9 pm. All 4 floors of the cSPACE King Edward building.