Originally Posted by Heozart
I found about your workshop a couple of weeks ago through NR43's sketchbook thread, and I must say the course outline sounds amazing. I know it is filling up fast, and I am very much tempted to register, but I would like to ask a question before I make up my mind.
I am currently reading through Creative Illustrations by Andrew Loomis, and page after page I am blown away by his insights and creative genius. That book seems to thoroughly cover every aspect of a good illustration, from the importance of planning to composition, value, and color.
From what I understand your workshop will have more emphasis on principle than on specialized technique. You recommended studying Loomis books in preparation for the workshop, and also said that you will cover "subjects that students will not be able to find elsewhere". Since Loomis covers a variety fundamental topics in depth, I am wondering if the reason I won't find your workshop material elsewhere is because you will go even deeper than Loomis and lead us to an even bigger revelation...which would be totally awesome and I hope is the case. Or is it be because you will be teaching how to apply those same principles in digital format? I am just curious about the nature of your secret material, since it doesn't seem to me that Loomis left out a lot of important subjects that would help one become a better artist.
Thank you so much for the lengths you have gone to put this workshop together to help other artists grow, and I hope it will be a big success for both you and everyone who participates!
Those are excellent questions. I'm glad someone brought this up.
Loomis's more advanced books like Creative Illustration and Eye of the Painter are very well written, incredibly insightful, and tackles many of the essential and advanced concepts that a good artist must know. To even be mentioned in the same sentence as Loomis makes me a bit weak in the knees. Based on my past discussions on Loomis, everyone knows how much respect I have for the man and how he has helped me in my own journey as an artist.
The big difference between my workshop and the Loomis book you mentioned is that Loomis lived in an age where computers didn't dominate people's lives, there were no arts and entertainment like the ones we have today of CG animation, movie special effects, video games, Japanese anime/manga, trendy and modern comic books, the sci-fi/fantasy illustration explosion, concept art, and so on. While the lessons learned from Loomis are certainly valuable, there are many issues he did not address simply because they did not exist in his lifetime, or they were outside of his expertise. He's never worked in CG animation, video game, comic books, storyboarding, concept art for entertainment, or modern sci-fi/fantasy, and he has never been a studio art director that directs a team of professional artists on projects.
As someone who has been a studio art director, concept artist and texture artist in video games, a comic book artist, an animation writer/director, a storyboard artist, and illustrator, the ground I cover are ones that Loomis never had the chance to travel because the time periods are too different. The lessons in the workshop are all within the context of today's development in the arts, entertainment, and technology, many of which did not exist in Loomis's lifetime.
The video portion of the workshop is also something you cannot get from books. Real-time demonstration of workflow, techniques, and on-the-fly problem solving are much better explained with videos, and there are lots of digital workflow tips that Loomis could never have predicted in his wildest imagination.
And as for insights that go further and deeper than the Loomis books, I think "different" is a better description. I try not to repeat what he has covered, unless I have a different take on it or additional insight. There are many things I cover that are not in his books (and vice versa). I think in a way it's like if you took two different seminars on filmmaking--one is with a well-known director from decades ago, and one is from a working director today, you'll learn some really different things between the two of them. Just like how filmmaking in terms of style, creative approach, technology, and general industry culture has drastically changed in the last few decades, so has the world of the arts and entertainment.
So in conclusion, I think my workshop and the Loomis books will compliment each other very well, and neither are replacements for the other. In fact, I wish my students will have at least gone through some of the Loomis books before taking my workshop--especially ones like Figure Drawing For All It's Worth and Successful Drawing. But since the books are already there, students can always go back and study Loomis after taking my workshop.