Academy duCret is designed for serious, highly motivated students who want a professional career as a fine artist. The students move step-by-step through the programs curriculum.
As each requisite skill is acquired, a new and more difficult task is assigned. Students at Academy duCret are encouraged to work through each assignment at their own pace in a group setting. The program consists of morning and afternoon sessions. In the morning session, work from a live model begins immediately. The human form is at the core of our program and students begin immediately learning the intricacies of the human form. Students learn from the live model five days a week for a minimum of three hours a day. The afternoon session has three separate components: drawing, sculpture and still life. With each step of the program the students develop a practical understanding of the materials and methods needed for their personal expression. Our curriculum is designed not only to teach the students hot to effectively paint and draw, but also how to develop their ability to think creatively.
Academic Figure Painting
Follow in the footsteps of the master painters from the 19th and 20th centuries. Learn to develop precise, accurate and realistic renderings via drawing and painting, while studying the human figure. This realism structured, academic training course utilizes a live model in a traditional long pose, enabling the student to study the figure in detail, including: the study of shapes, proportions, values and edges of a figure, all while exploring different sketching and painting techniques. Students will begin with the solid construction and blocking-in of the human form, and will then concentrate on the subtle detailing of the model and surroundings. An in-depth study of color includes: value, temperature and Chroma relations, the properties of light and its effects on multiple surfaces. The course is comprised of a three hour long pose that will run for a two week period. One-on-one interaction with the instructor to improve technical and artistic abilities will afford the serious artist the tools needed to ultimately create a successful body of work. Group lectures will be held periodically.
This course opens with the basic materials and looks at how we will utilize them throughout. From covering how to grip a pencil to executing confident marks, we set the groundwork to be confident draughtsmen. As we begin to get familiar with our materials and how to execute our marks, we will begin to focus on improving control. With crucial skill building exercises focused on pressure and value understanding, a higher level of sensitivity to the materials will be achieved, resulting in greater confidence and control. As we advance, four major forms will be introduced and studied; sphere, cylinder, cone, and cube. At this point we will focus on how light interacts with these forms, revealing their three dimensional quality, allowing us to accurately describe the form on paper. Meticulous repetition exercises will establish a firm grasp of these forms and how to illustrate them in two dimensions. control and value understanding, we will approach creative drawing working from photographic reference. Each artist will utilize the skills from these exercises to execute a completely unique drawing of their own.
Traditional Still Life Painting
This course is designed to develop and strengthen one’s natural level of drawing ability; improving and honing observation skills by working with live objects and photo references. Students will learn to paint with realistic accuracy by working with shape, tone, color, pattern and texture, using a range of different oil techniques. Students will learn about composition, the interaction of positive shapes and negative space and will develop the ability to realistically transfer three dimensional objects to a two dimensional surface via the study and practice of trompe l’oeil. Students will practice multiple oil painting techniques, including: color mixing, paint application, blocking in the composition and how to use photo references in a correct manner. Discussions will include: the care of painting materials and equipment, along with an extensive study of color theory. Students will work to improve overall technical skills, which in turn will produce well-structured and composed paintings.
Improve figure drawing skills by studying the underlying structure of the human form (bone, muscle, tendon, and cartilage), while sharpening observational skills through careful study of the surface form. Work from casts, photos, skeleton, live models, and overlays of the muscular system as anatomical information is applied to artistic use. The fall semester covers drawing heads and portraits. The spring semester covers the entire figure.