Summer Plein Air I


The weather has been amazing so I've been painting outside a lot lately. Mostly around downtown Toronto! 

Latest en plein air at University of Toronto. My first few thumbnails are mainly shape, composition and value studies. The last one is a colour study. 

Big trees and Amanda at high park! 

Mt Pleasant Cemetery! I saw a family of raccoon.. so cute.. I'm going to have to doodle them next time I visit!  

King Edward at Queen's Park! This one was really tough. My attempt at painting metal kinda failed. Going to do some still life studies and try again! 

The Distillery District. It look like its gonna topple over haha. Note to self, lock down drawing before painting! I always get way to excited to paint :(


Saturday Plein Air at Jimmy's Coffee!


Paint play!

Kay organized a paint party at Jimmy's on Saturday! It was super last minute but I'm really glad I went! Jimmy's have a really nice back patio that is perfect for painting! Plus the drinks are amazing :) 

Kay's pastel play! 


Paint Play at High Park


Sunday Plein air

Sunday is the day I paint rain or shine. I would feel weird if I dont paint. The habit is drilled into me by all the classes I took over the year at He Qin studio and Studio West. For awhile without classes, I would just paint at home, it is still fun but different.  During class you learn things and see things you normally wouldn't. That shape here and that colour there. This is why a good teacher is really important to me. They not only inspires but became your second pair of eyes. And eyes are very important for artists! 




OCAD U Illustration Thesis: "Food for Thought"


My illustration thesis is about food! How food changed humanity. For example, one of the earliest case of animal domestication started with salt in urine! Prehistorical human uses it to lure animals! Another interesting case is Louis Pasteur, who discovered microbiology in beet juice! You can't beet that one! #pun 

I shall write a more in depth blog about my thesis experiences in the future. Overall, it was really fun because I gets to play with colours! :) 


Life Drawing

It been awhile since I last posted my life drawing. So here goes! Done at Toon on Tap, one of the best life drawing group in Toronto! I complied my favourite ones to include in my portfolio! Their models are awesome! Of course theres also the beer :) 


So for the past few months, I have been super busy with preparing for my thesis on top of my animation portfolio. I haven't really post much about it because I've been kind of neglecting it. My thesis is about how food changed history. This is one of the few pieces I'm happy with. 

It is about Banana Republic and how it still continuously control and enslave Latin American country through illegal work and threats. 

Frenchie Friday!

So me and a bunch of OCAD kids decided to get together and paint each other every Friday!
I decided to nick name it Frenchie Friday after the cute dog and the phrase "paint me like one of your French girl" 


Here are some alla prima I painted from past sessions. Each sitting is 25 min. 
It was a lot more difficult to model than I thought... I cannot keep a straight face :D

I shall do a compilation of everyone's work for future entries. I think that will be very fun! 

Illustrative Painting Teachers at OCAD U

I decide to write a blog about all the illustrative painting teachers I've take class with at OCAD U. I basically arrange my courses according to the teacher I want for painting classes. It works wonderfully. During my years at OCAD,  painting classes are the class I look forward to every week! I listed them in chronological order! 

Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Team Macho

I had Stephen for Year 1 and second semester of Year 2. He is a very eccentric and charismatic teacher. He made painting really fun! I remember someone saying he is the painting guru whom you travel to in a cave for advice. He encourages you to paint in anyway you want and have fun with it, as long you paint! He told me about this guy (whose name I forgot because I suck at remembering names) who paint with an 8 feet brush! Stephen demonstrated how the 8 feet brush painter paint, but with an imaginary brush. He look like he is fencing and battling with an imaginary enemy on the canvas. Fun! 

I had Stephen as a teacher at a time where I don't really know much about painting, everything I painted prior to this was mostly intuitive. I dont know how I achieved certain result and why I am doing what I am doing. Stephen was quick to help, he introduced me to the concepts of warm and cool colour. How black is not really black. I had trouble with muddying my colour and pushing paints around, Stephen told me to paint smaller and use bigger brushes. Thus I gradually work my way from 12 by 18 to 5 by 7. And now I usually paint 5 by 7 haha. Sadly he is no longer teaching at OCAD. 


I had Kevin in first semester of Year 2. His class is the first painting class that really explained the painting process to me. He covers the transition between value painting to colour. He introduces us to the importance of value and chroma. He introduces us to the Zorn palette and other classical painting methods. He also introduces us to water-soluble oil (I dislike the medium but he works magic in it) We painted several colour mixing exercises to creating gradient and chroma chart. We paint value chart, double primaries colour chart, Zorn palette colour chart. Those homework are a pain in the butt because we have to mix so many colour blocks... but they are worth it since those charts are still hanging on my wall!

It is in his class I begin to understand how colours work together. His critiques are great, more about the overall of the painting rather than a specific part. He almost always do a live demo before class and that really helps a lot. I think it was one of the best thing about his class. You get to watch him paint! 

Narwhal Contemporary Gallery, Team Macho

I had Lauchie during my first semester of Year 3. Another Team Macho member! OCAD managed to collected 3 out of 4 Team Macho members. Nick Aoki also teaches painting at OCAD but I never had him. One of the thing I really enjoy about Lauchie's class is his feedback and how he constantly talk in the background about different painting method and his experiences. (I never really absorb much of it because I block everything out once I start painting) He talks bout warm and cool, composition, values etc. Like Stephen, he doesn't do any painting demos. 

Lauchie's feedbacks are very precise and he express them in a very sarcastic but fun way during critiques. They are harsh but very real, it is like those trick medicine I had as a child that taste sweet and bitter at the same time but extremely helpful! He is not afraid to teach the real deal! You will not get any of those cushioned critiques, if it is bad he will tell you it is bad and why is it bad and what you can do about it. So straight forward! This is one of the main reason I decided to take him for my thesis in fourth year. If you requires a more neutering and greenhouse atmosphere, maybe he is not the best prof for you. 

Robert Berger

I had Bob (Robert) during my second semester of Year 3. I cannot find any info about him on the internet. He is a tenured professor so he has been teaching at OCAD for a good while. He is like a jolly grandfather who loves to talk about his passion, which is art and design. He graduated from ArtCenter in the state. So his teaching style is very traditional with a very big focus on design! 

We spent half of the semester on drawings and other half on paintings. He gives really informative hand out every week at the beginning of the class, with instruction and notes on design and drawing/painting process. They are very useful! What I really love is that he talks a lot about not just about different painter or painting techniques, but also about different illustrators and designers. I personally feel like design is a very big part of the painting process, and he is one of the few professor who explores the subject in depth. He also brings book on different artists and designers to class. His class have a heavier workload though, I heard he changed it but when I was there, there is homework every week, as oppose to every 3 weeks of standard painting classes. His critiques are very soft, almost polar opposite of Lauchie. He mostly focus on what you are doing right and push you in that direction instead of focusing on the flaws. 

InGram Gallery 

I currently have Sara as my painting professor right now. I also had her last semester. It is her first year teaching at OCAD and she is really open to student's opinion about what they want to learn from the class. She takes classes herself from master painters, such as Jeremy Lipking. I actually met her at Benjamin Bjorklund's workshop before she started teaching at OCAD. You can read about her experiences on Sara's blog. 

Sara's teaching style is similar to Kevin Bae's, which is very constructive. She shows us how to mix the Jeremy Lipking signature purple and his painting method. She do painting demos occasionally. She covers the importance of underpainting and value. Make smaller studies before going on to the big pieces. Her critiques, both in class and group critique is very informative and specific. She would points out areas that needs improvements and explains in details on how to improve it.  She also really pushes you on a personal level, she can tell if you slack off on your homework or not painting to your best ability. She is very supportive on a personal level but also very objective as a teacher! 

First figure painting of the year!

First life painting of the semester!
I decided to gouache it :D 

Name tagged as per usual first class! This is actually my second time taking a class with Sara Sniderhan. It is her first year at OCAD U, definitely recommend! Her critiques are very precise and concrete. She also covers different painting techniques, more specifically Jeremy Lipking's, who she studied with. Her teaching style is similar to Kevin Bae (another awesome painting teacher), but their critiques styles are very different. 

Maybe I should write a blog about different painting profs at OCAD U. Since illustrative and observational painting courses are one of my favourite experiences at OCAD U. 

Costume Life Drawing

Costume life drawing at OCADU with Bob Bergers. I decided to experiment a lot in Bob's class to work on my colour and design sense over realistic representation. I really enjoyed Bob's class because he is really big on teaching the design of visual representation. 

With the umbrella lady I mainly focused on trying to paint the light, it was difficult but really fun. Thanks god gouache dries fast haha. I run out of time for rest of the image though. :(

For hat and glasses lady I tried to paint their personality and caricature with colours. Worked on a small surface helps just get the shapes and feeling down. No space or time for details! 

Sargent Master Studies at Studio West

Some master studies from over the past term at Studio West Art from my courses with Keita Morimoto and Peter Chan! Finally scanned everything so now I can post them.

Madam X portrait study, this one was really fun because Peter taught us a new painting process, which is painting on shellac! Shellac is a type of violin varnish that provides a super smooth and orange surface. We paint the rough lines first on gesso board then pour shellac on top of the shellac. Then we paint on top of it. It was really fun to see the contrast between the warm and cool. This study was done with zorn palette! 

I like painting kids... but they always end up looking kinda creepy even in studies. :(
Anyhow did a value study before the coloured one with zorn palette.
I am really happy with those spots of blue :)

Learned load! I have to work on be more confident with my brush stroke, leave it and don't touch it! I keep going over stuffs... Need to work harder! Practice, practice, practice!!!