Studying the Renaissance drawing method in Tuscany

Last month, I had the incredible opportunity to attend New Masters Academy’s Renaissance figure drawing workshop held in a gorgeous 10th-century castle just outside of Florence. Led by Joshua Jacobo and Johanna Schwaiger, the week-long workshop dived deep into the drawing methods of the Renaissance masters.

Starting from calligraphy and simple egg constructions, we got to learn about outlines, curves and patterns, proportions and balance, and the process of designing poses and characters for finished work, among many other interesting topics. At the castle, we practiced the theory by drawing from live models, and we got to spend three full days in Florence studying the works of the Old Masters.

Joshua critiquing my work, photo by Jakob Dobaiz
Entrance of Castello di Mugnana, our beautiful venue

Besides learning from the Old Masters, we also had the honor to meet and draw alongside the legendary master draftsman Glenn Vilppu and the renowned animation and film industry leader Bill Perkins, as well as our lovely painting instructor and coach Catherine Bobkoski. Furthermore, the wonderful sculptor Jason Arkles, who’s also the host of the Sculptor’s Funeral podcast, welcomed us for a tour in his studio by the Arno River.

It was incredible to finally meet so many of the friends and instructors I have been working with for a long time at NMA and to make new friends as well. Thank you Joshua, Johanna, and NMA for making this event possible!

The following week, I was honored to be able to participate in the sketching workshop of Glenn Vilppu, held in Florence. Under his guidance, we toured churches and museums and drew people and the beautiful Florentine landscapes.

I had such a wonderful and inspiring time in Florence, and I will keep practicing everything I learned about in order to truly master those concepts. Thanks again to all the friends and teachers who made this experience unforgettable!

Viv, Dylan, Glenn and I drawing at the castle, photo by Catherine Bobkoski
Beatuful view from our venue
In Bargello Museum, photo by Milène Fernández
Dylan, Liz and I discussing our work during lunch break, photo by Milène Fernández
Jason Arkles showing us around his studio
Our wonderful group of dedicated students and teachers in Tuscany

Here are some of my drawings from both workshops:

1 thought on “Studying the Renaissance drawing method in Tuscany”

  1. Dean Matthew Hoot

    That must have been an excellent opportunity for you Alisa to further develop your artistic talent. The milieu where the workshop took place was obviously most suitable as Renaissance art training place. Baba.

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