Workshops - Outside UK

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3-day WORKSHOPS: Comprehensive Graphite Pencil Drawing Tuition
We had so much fun at Ottawa and Clearwater this year... but all good things have to end eventually.

Regretfully, Jenny and I have decided that 2018 is our last year abroad. Travel is more tiring, and Jenny's 96 year-old mum needs more care now.

But never say never - we might be back in your country at a later date, so...

Subscribe for updates and breaking news above.

And my UK Studio Workshops will continue, so come to us instead!

Florida workshops and Florida fun

These informal workshops are designed for artists of all abilities, from novice to advanced, and who have a desire to take their drawing to a new level of realism.

Realism is achieved by closely studying textures, and then mastering the ways to interpret them and commit them to paper. These workshops will provide you with a greater ability to explore and understand textures, the techniques required to render them in a believable way, and you will learn both the "how" and the "why". Whatever your present ability, you will leave with a new-found knowledge of how to draw and use textures to the benefit of your work.

Paper, pencils and all other necessary supplies are included. However, if you prefer to use your own favourite pencils and tools, please bring them with you. I strongly recommend you use a table-top drawing board. This can be a manufactured board or as simple as a sheet of MDF. Our paper size will be 12" × 18", so it need not be large.

If possible, I'll have a few of my original drawings with me, but prints will be available for you to study in close detail. I will, of course, be happy to answer all queries and demonstrate specific techniques used. Please feel free to bring examples of your own work along.
'Grandpa Grizzly' by Mike Sibley


The workshops are limited to about 20 students each to ensure individual attention.

Includes Equipment Pack comprising:
  • Sheets of Conqueror plate-finish paper (12" x 16") as required
  • 1 each Staedtler Mars Lumograph pencils - 4B, 2B, H, 2H, 4H
  • 1 Staedtler vinyl art eraser
  • 1 pack Blu-Tack
  • 1 Pencil sharpener
  • 1 Blending tortillon
Please note:
  • I cannot supply table-mounted Drawing Boards outside of the UK, so please bring your own if possible.
  • If you prefer to use a desklamp please bring one with you. We can't guarantee suitable power points but we'll do our best to provide them.

Typical 3-day Itinerary
These workshops will be rewritten and expanded before the event. The following is for guidance only:

The workshops are flexible to take into account your present level of ability and the typical daily itinerary is as follows:

DAY 1:
In the morning, as you work through the initial drawing exercises, I will advise you on using a chisel point, blending versus layering, erasing, and forming tapered lines. These exercises will also will help you to get used to working on Conqueror paper and my way of working. Then you'll move on to a series of exercises that begin with the basic method of drawing believable waves in hair and progress to multiple curves - an essential hair-drawing tool.

In the afternoon, the previous exercise will be expanded into the drawing of white and black hair - that respectively depend on shadows and highlights. Then, with my assistance, we'll study ways of breaking a drawing down into easily manageable sections. Finally, there will be an exercise on the basic techniques involved with layering hair and using the layers to break the drawing down into ever smaller sections, which promotes both ease of drawing and injecting a sense of reality.

All these exercises are designed to encourage questions from you. This workshop can cover as many aspects of drawing any animals that you want it to - as long as you ask the questions!

DAY 2:
To begin the day I'll analyse the composition of one of my drawings that uses a wide range of reference sources. I'll explain how you can use your own body to mimic and understand the movements of animals - so you can realistically alter a pose. To follow will be two exercises built around constructing dogs' noses and eyes - but the techniques are equally applicable to other animals and human eyes.

During the day I'll give you some tips of photographing animals, creating composite scenes, generating appropriate emotions in your subjects, and successfully portraying "colours" in monochrome. And, of course, I'll also help you with any other aspect of drawing that you would like me to cover. The penultimate exercise will help you to look deep into a reference as you extract all the usable information, which you add to a potential guideline drawing. And finally, you can try what you've learned when you draw a Hawk based on a supplied reference. And, as a bonus, the success of that drawing will depend on extracting its visual clues and building them into your drawing.

DAY 3:
The final day is loosely structured to give me time to respond to all your questions or requests for assistance on anything drawing-related. You'll be introduced to the final drawing and have a choice of subject. You're welcome to bring your own project too, if you prefer to work on that.

You are not expected to have completed the drawing by the end of the day... if you wish to complete it later at home, post it to my Workshop Plus page to receive a critique - or assistance if you need to post it in stages. The workshop does not stop when you leave the venue!