Portrait Drawing Workshop with Marvin Mattelson

Realistic Portrait Drawing
5 Day Workshop

Location: School of Visual Arts, New York City
June 2018

Recent Portrait Commission
Fenglei Fang
Portrait Drawing Workshop Demo

...one of the greatest teachers ever. Marvin Mattelson changes the lives of anyone paying attention. I know I wouldn't be half the painter I am without his guidance.
Dorian Vallejo

Workshop Purpose
The goal of this workshop is to teach you both the strategic thinking and techniques that great master artists have utilized for centuries. J. D. Ingres said that drawing is the probity of painting. Whether you are interested in creating portraits or just want to strengthen your drawing skills, you'll learn what it takes to create accurate life-like illusionistic images and how to incorporate what you learn into your own personal approach and style.

Award winning classical realist oil portrait artist, Marvin Mattelson will be conducting this workshop for artists who long to elevate their artistic skills. He provides an opportunity for artists of all levels and styles to benefit from his thirty plus years of experience, both as a professional artist and as an instructor at the School of Visual Arts in New York City.

He believes that the way art is taught today limits all but the most precociously talented from succeeding. If they draw or paint well, it's in spite of their methods, not because of them. Unfortunately, many artists with great potential are thwarted because they are not provided with the proper understanding and training.

Marvin has created a refreshingly logical and clear approach for artists of all levels looking to get better.

Workshop Specifics
Whether drawing or painting is your end game, a deeper understanding of the drawing process is the most crucial component.

The essence of draftsmanship is having a well-trained eye. The ability to faithfully represent what lies before you is the major factor in achieving long-term success as a realist.

When approached logically, mastery over your drawing can be attained. If you want to learn how to draw well, you first need to transform the way you see. Marvin's approach is far more than mindlessly copying what 's in front of you. It's based on understanding and making purposeful choices.

The most effective way to learn is by working from live models. Marvin demonstrates and explains each and every step of his methodology. You'll learn:

• How to achieve accurate drawing and values.
• How to create form and atmosphere.
• How to use edge variation to enhance reality.

Marvin will work one on one with each of his students during the class sessions when he's not demonstrating.

Daily Class Schedule
9:00 am -12:30 p.m....morning drawing session/demo
12:30 p.m. -1:30 p.m....lunch
1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.....afternoon drawing session/demo

Historical Precedence
Marvin's approach to drawing is rooted in his 35+ years as a professional artist and teacher. His drawing methodologies are based on logical and intelligent observational analysis and are totally in sync with those utilized by 19th Century French Academics Charles Bargue, J.L. Gerome and Pierre-Paul Prud'hon. These techniques are taught while drawing from the live model. Marvin believes that only by working from the life, and not plates in a book or photos, can you truly learn to perceive and convey the illusion of three dimensional structure in space.

Workshop Fees & Registration
Workshop registration opens April 2018 • Tuition T.B.A.

Links to learn more about the program

Click on the following links to learn more about Marvin Mattelson, see some of his commissioned portraits, check out several of his workshop demonstrations, and look at his students' workshop paintings.

You can also read additional feedback from participants of Marvin's workshops and classes.

You can find out more about Marvin's unique point of view regarding art education, read his teaching philosophy and his thoughts regarding the painting process.

Who is Marvin Mattelson?

Marvin Mattelson is an award winning portrait artist whose paintings hang in collections worldwide, including both the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Smithsonian Institution's National Portrait Gallery.

Marvin has been teaching at SVA for over 35 years and his former students have achieved both critical and financial success in all arenas of fine and commercial art worlds

Student Testimonialsent Feed

I learned more in two weeks with Marvin than in seven years and an MFA in art school.
Jenny Lyon Poggi

So few people have the ability to operate at the level you do artistically, but even fewer have the skills and desire to teach others how it's done. You took what you learned about us as individuals and you developed custom, innovative teaching methods using them to push each of us to new levels. You understand how people learn and seem to genuinely thrive off of your students' progress. Selfless with your wealth of knowledge, you jumped at any opportunity to share what you know with your students. After only six days, every one of us walked away with more knowledge than we could have ever hoped to achieve in that time frame and for that amount of money.

This workshop was, without a doubt, the best investment I've ever made in the development of my skills as an artist. I cannot thank you enough for everything you taught me this week, Marvin. You are a spectacular teacher and person, and I will be counting down the days until I can study with you again.
Mary Beth Lumley

I'm so pleased with everything that you taught me. It works so beautifully. I can't thank you enough. I'm totally jealous of all the people who got to put up with you for however many days it was in Santa Fe. I hope they appreciated your incredible genius, and strange sense of humor. I do.
Elsie Hammerlich

Marvin teaches a system of oil painting that is not only ideal for portraits but is readily adaptable to any subject. His complete explanations during demonstrations reveal his years of experience as a university art professor. Class time was well-planned with demos followed by adequate time to implement the principles and techniques.
Parrish Hirasaki

In my 20 years of painting & education, I have never had such a comprehensive & informative class. I now understand why I am doing what I'm doing. The great thing about Marvin's class is that he can teach a beginner all the way to the seasoned artist in the same class. I have never had such a fabulous teacher!!!
Claire Bradford

Wow, it took me till today to 'come down' from the high I was experiencing from last week! When I show people the before and after portraits they have all gasped in amazement that so much could be accomplished in such a short amount of time.

I feel like my brain was a dry sponge, and now it's filled with the knowledge you gave me of how to do a truly lifelike portrait. Your color palette is amazing. I can't imagine ever using any other colors!!

Thank you so much for such a wonderful experience, and I truly enjoyed meeting you! Your dry wit kept me cracked up all week long. I hope I can participate again in the future.
Susan Carter

Marvin’s principles were refreshingly objective, and could be easily pieced together to form a larger whole. It soon became clear that his instruction would be the cornerstone of my painting education.

The beauty of Marvin’s teachings is that he never lets his own individual propensities overshadow his objective understanding of light, color, and form. By learning to depict earth’s natural forms as convincingly as possible on the two-dimensional canvas, one thereby acquires an entire visual language with which to communicate.

Marvin’s guidance has freed me. Without it, I may very well have been faced with decades of pursuing and assembling the technical knowledge that Marvin commands. He has provided me with firm ground upon which I may walk my own path, and for this I will always be grateful.
Joseph Daily
Best of Show Award & People's Choice Award Winner, Portrait Society of America 2005

Link to additional student feedback.

No motion capture or audio recording is allowed during the workshop or lectures!
Film and/or digital still cameras are permitted.

© Marvin Mattelson 2002
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