The Chiaroscuro Studio of art program is based on the atelier method, a step by step systematic progression through the curriculum. As each task and requisite skill is acquired, a new more difficult task is assigned.The rate at which students progress through the Drawing and Painting Program varies by individual, and normally requires a minimum of two and a half to three years to complete.
The fact that our academy is based on the atelier system represents a great advantage to the beginner students, as they are sharing the studio space with more advanced students. This gives them the opportunity to see the future projects they will work on, listen to other's critics, receive advice from advanced students, etc.
Our curriculum is divided in three major programs:
• Intensive drawing program
INTENSIVE DRAWING PROGRAM:
•Geometric Shapes Drawing: This basic exercise will help the student to understand principles of drawing, value scale and tone relationships. Starting by drawing basic shapes such as sphere, cube, cilinder and pyramid, the student begins to understand light, form, edges, transitions in the most simple way. All this knowledge will be apply to the Bargue Drawings later on.
•Bargue Drawings: these exercises are designed to strengthen the student's ability of reproducing two-dimensional forms to help them confront three-dimensional subjects in future tasks. The simplified forms of the Bargue Drawings allow students to learn how to separate light from dark and the importance of values in a turning form.
(Barge Drawings are 19th century academic drawings produced by painter Charles Bargue upon request by Jean Leon Gérome)
•Figure Drawing Master Copies: This exercise allows the student to applies the adquired knowledge to the human figure. Reproducing Drawings by 19th Century artists, the student can develope drawing skills by copying the Mastesr technique.
•Charcoal Cast Drawing: Moving from a flat image to a three-dimensional object, students begin to draw plaster casts, reproductions of classical statuary, using charcoal over white paper. In these exercises they learn to use the sight-size method, how to compress values, to create a focus, and how to create the impression of depth, distance and atmosphere among parts of the drawing.
•Figure Drawing: Each day students spend three hour sessions drawing from the nude model. Long poses are sustained for 4 to 5 weeks, providing the student with ample time to study the figure in depth, and to complete drawings to a high level of finishing. Our students learn to translate nature in a way that is both anatomically accurate and artistically beautiful. Pencil and Charcoal are used for this exercises, however sanguine and silverpoint are introduced during special lessons.
•Cast Drawing on Toned Paper: this exercise introduces toned paper and white chalk. The purpose of this is to teach the student to see and organize more complex value relationships. This time adding light by using white chalk.
•Advanced Figure Drawing: In this long pose figure drawing excersise, the student applies the same technique and principles learned in the Cast Drawing on Toned Paper to the human figure.
•Geometric Shape Grisaille Painting: By using just white, black and umber, the student is introduced to the principles of oil painting.
•Limited Palette Figure Painting: All the previous exercises provided the student with the necessary knowledge to be used in this long pose poject. Using limited palette is a great way to master the relations between values and different temperatures, as well as the background-figure relationship.
ADVANCED PAINTING PROGRAM
•Full Palette Figure Painting: Using full palette will help the student to experiment the full, color and temperatures and value relationship betwen the skin tones and surroundings.
•Still Life Painting: Still life painting will teach the students how to reproduce different surface qualities, deeper comprehension of form, atmosphere, color an composition.
•Portrait Painting: The student usually depicts the sitter head-and-shoulders, half-length, or full-body, the picture is specially composed in order to portray the character and unique attributes of the subject.
•Introduction to Landscape Painting: The student is introduced to the portrayal of a scenic view. Such sceneries encompasses meadows, hills, mountains, valleys, trees, rivers, forests, coastal views and seascapes, that will help him develop value representacion, pespective and atmosphere.
•Introduction to Outdoor figure Painting: Is the last section of the program, the student when used to depict in a controled environment is taken outdoors to experiment different light conditions that will refinehis abilities due to the constant change of light.