In 1999, I had worked at Steve Edsey & Sons illustration studio for a year and had helped out on a few projects, but it was becoming clear to me that my artwork just wasn't getting any better. I felt that in order to get to where I wanted to go, I had to go back to school. There was only one choice of where to go - American Academy Of Art. Not only had most of the illustrators at Edsey gone there, but my Dad had as well.
In my first year at the Academy, I had figure drawing 3 nights a week for 3 1/2 hours a night. My teacher was Melinda Whitmore who had graduated from The New York Academy Of Art.
Melinda was great - she took a lot of time to move all of her students in the right direction. She was a real stickler for measuring the human figure in order to get the correct proportions - something that I had never done in my previous art classes. In addition to the studio class work she had us do outside projects, such as doing gesture drawings, drawing from the work of a great master in order to look at the figure the same way they did ( I drew from a Leonardo Da Vinci drawing), and doing extensive drawings of hands and feet. She was also a an expert on Human Anatomy, and taught that course as well in my second semester. Below are some of the drawings I did in Melinda's class:
Overall Melinda's class was a great experience. She and her husband David Jamieson own and operate the Vitruvian Art Studio where students can learn the same techniques that these two wonderful people taught me.