Sunday, March 28, 2010

Portrait Society of America Panel Discussion

Jacob Collins will be among the panel members of this discussion to be held at the Portrait Society of America Conference next month. The panel discussion is called Contemporary Art: Realist revolution and critical relevance: Is Main Stream Media Missing an Important Cultural Trend? It will be moderated by Jeremy Lipking.

Friday April 23rd 2010 4:00pm

Hyatt Regency Reston, VA


There is an actually existing, wide-spread, multi-faceted Realist movement in the Art world today. It is functioning as a set of specific tools, philosophy and practice. As any major art movement in history - it is a common visual language based on a common world view.
This movement is current, relevant and forward - looking
This movement is part of presently existing contemporary Art
This movement is a reflection of an important aspect of our modern world - democratization of cultural plane

Panel Members:

Jacob Collins

Jacob Collins:

Artist & Founder of Grand Central Academy

Alexey Steele

Alexey Steele:

Artist & Recipient of the 2009 Gusi Peace Prize

James Panero

James Panero:

Writer & Managing Editor of The New Criterion

Vern  Swanson

Vern Swanson:

Author, expert on Academic and Realist Art &Director of the Springville Museum

The event is part of the PSOA Art of the Portrait conference (April 22 – 25, 2010) and will be free of charge and open to the public. (reservations required) contact Christine Egnoski at or call 877-772-4321

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Student work March 2010

by Ken Salaz (detail)

by Ken Salaz

by Spencer Brainard

by Carla Crawford

by Angela Cunningham

by Angela Cunningham (detail)

by Elisabeth Ehmann

by Angela Cunningham

by Angela Cunningham

by Angela Cunningham

by Carla Crawford

by Neal Esplin

by Ken Salaz

by Lindsay Foster

by Mark Porter

by Mark Porter

by Mark Porter

by Rebecca Gray

by Charlie Harris

by Brendan Johnston

by Emilie Lee

by Bob Silverman

by Justin Wood

by Ken Salaz

by David Troncoso

by Connie Netherton

by Victoria Herrera

Friday, March 26, 2010

New Sculpture Workshop with Mason Sullivan

The Portrait Inside and Out June 14-18 (5 days) 10am - 5pm

Look at yourself in a mirror. Just under the surface of the skin lies the skull. Many of the unique and distinctive features you observe are created by its form. The arrangement of the muscles of the face both reveal and hide the form of the skull beneath, and the action of these muscles can exhibit the full range of human emotion.

Recognizing skeletal features in the living model, and the understanding of the muscular action that creates emotional expression is an immense help to artists of all kinds who choose the portrait as their subject.

The workshop will begin with an introduction to the anatomy of the head. Both skeletal and muscular features will be reviewed. Students will have the opportunity to copy a skull in clay. During the final days we will apply our studies to sculpting from a living model. more info & how to sign up

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Graydon Parrish lecture in Santa Barbara

Here is video footage of the lecture that Graydon Parrish gave at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art on March 14, 2010. The lecture is called "Technique as Influence: The Painter’s Odyssey of Craft and Communication" and it is part of a series of lectures at SBMA that address academic art.

Graydon Parrish is a leading artist and scholar in the field of academic art. He teaches at the GCA and is offering a summer workshop (July 19-August6) on color theory. If you make it to the final episode of the lecture you will see some artwork from the studios of GCA by Angela Cunningham and Joshua LaRock.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


The First Annual Drawing Competition hopes to gather together the greatest draftsmen to work on a single figure drawing over the course of 5 days. Drawings will be done from one model and one pose.

drawing by Jacob Collins

Drawing skills are the bedrock of good painting, and the foundation on which form and color can most truthfully be expressed. It is incumbent on the artist to routinely sharpen and develop these skills from life. The intent of this competition is to bring greater prestige and honor to those artists who have devoted time and energy to honing these abilities. It will be a pure test of drawing skills.

The draftsman who executes the most beautiful drawing will be awarded the Grand Prize accompanied by the title, Apelles. The second place prize includes the title, Protogenes. The winning draftsmen will hold these titles until the next annual competition. Cash prizes to be announced.

Participants will be selected on the basis of a portfolio submission consisting of five images, including at least three figure drawings. All artists, from students to professionals, young and old, are encouraged to apply. There is no entrance fee, and no fee to compete. Please send all inquiries and entries to

The Story of Apelles and Protogenes

Apelles and Protogenes were renowned painters of Ancient Greece during the time of Alexander the Great (4th century BC). They were rivals and also advocates of each other’s work. Stories tell of their daily precise practice of outlining, and the laborious fine finish they brought to their work, whether drawings or paintings.

Their rivalry tested who could draw the finest, steadiest line and has famously been recorded in an anecdote in Pliny’s Natural History.

Apelles travelled to Protogenes' home in Rhodes to make the acquaintance of this painter he had heard so much about. Arriving at Protogenes' studio, he encountered an old woman who told him that Protogenes was out and asked for his name so she could report who had enquired after him.

Observing in the studio a panel Protogenes had prepared for a painting, Apelles walked over to the easel, and taking up a brush told the servant to tell Protogenes "this came from me," and drew in colour an extremely fine line across the panel.

When Protogenes returned, and the old woman explained what had taken place, he examined the line and pronounced that only Apelles could have done so perfect of work; Protogenes then dipped a brush into another colour and drew a still finer line above the first one, and asked his servant to show this to the visitor should he return.

When Apelles returned, and was shown Protogenes' response, ashamed that he might be bettered, he drew in a third colour an even finer line between the first two, leaving no room for another display of craftsmanship.

On seeing this, Protogenes admitted defeat, and went out to seek Apelles and meet him face-to-face.

(Retold by Guillaume Apollinaire)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Hudson River School Exhibit

The sun is out and spring is here! It's time to get psyched for landscape painting season. There is a great collection of Hudson River School paintings on view at the New York Historical Society right now. The exhibit ends on March 25 this week so I ran up there this morning to check them out. It is so amazing to see them in person! This Bierstadt is freakin huge - it's 10 feet wide!!!! So amazing.

Donner Lake From the Summit, by Albert Bierstadt, 1873 oil on canvas, 72 1/8 x 120 3/16 in

Lake Maggiore, Italy by Sanford Robinson Gifford, oil on canvas, 17 3/4 x 30 in. 1858

Cayambe, by Frederic Edwin Church, 1858, oil on canvas, 30 x 48 1/8 in

Saturday, March 20, 2010

New Workshop with Tony Curanaj

August 16 - 27: still life painting with Tony Curanaj.
This Workshop will concentrate on many of the fundamentals of good picture making, from the technical to the conceptual with still life as the subject matter. The class will have daily lectures and demonstrations focusing on different topics as well as individual critiques while the student paints his or her own still life set up. Read more about the workshop and how to sign up here.

"Nine"by Tony Curanaj, oil on canvas 21x18 inches

Friday, March 19, 2010

New Workshop with Douglas Flynt

July 5 - 16: Figure Painting with Douglas Flynt.
The workshop will be an extensive look at the process of figure painting. The model will hold one pose for the duration of the workshop. Gesture, proportional relationships, shapes, and structure will be addressed in the drawing stage. While painting, students will examine how light on form affects perceptions of color in it's various components of hue, value, and chroma. Under-painting, color mixing, and palette layout will also be discussed. For even more details on what will be covered, read the full course description on the GCA workshops page.

by Douglas Flynt

by Douglas Flynt

by Douglas Flynt

by Douglas Flynt

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Portrait demo by Travis Schlaht

Travis Schlaht did this small portrait demo last night in his class. The model posed for 3 hours. Travis Schlaht teaches evening figure drawing classes with Edward Minoff that meet every night from 6:30-9:30.

Portrait demo by Travis Schlaht, oil on canvas, 6"x8"

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Flower painting with Michael Klein

Due to popular demand we have added another session of Michael Klein's flower painting workshop from June 21 - 23. Sign up soon if you are interested!

"White and Violet" by Michael Klein 14" x 28" Oil on linen, 2008

"Bouquet" by Michael Klein 20" x 24" Oil on linen, 2008

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Ecorche Class

Mason Sullivan teaches ecorche class every Thursday afternoon. Most of the students taking this class are in their second or third year at GCA.

Each week we prepare beforehand by studying anatomy books and drawing the bones or muscles we will sculpt in class.

Last week we finished the muscles of the face and began on the muscles of the spine. Most students are coming in for at least one evening or saturday a week to stay caught up.