Visual Art

We copied a different painting each day in Esteban Rodriguez’s superb week-long alla primal oil painting class at Toronto’s Academy of Realist Art. Studying John Singer Sargent portraits this way, we learned about colour mixing, value, hue, selecting and using brushes, comparative drawing basics, etc. It was a brilliant class but also like jumping in at the deepest end of the pool — particularly since I’d missed the first, all-day demo class. Can’t wait to take another class there!

I didn’t use a drawing transfer sheet for either of the two large men’s faces. I’m determined to learn proper underdrawing eventually!

Classical Figuration class

Took a Studio West class where we watched someone extremely talented paint in the style of Rembrandt, then were left mostly to our own devices to copy a classical portrait or try to capture a life model. Though the class was 10 weeks long and we made at least one small study each class, these three are the only ones I feel sufficient ownership over to show since the teacher would paint over our mistakes instead of coaching us on how to improve.

Book Layout & Cover Design

Laid out a novel last night using Pages. The cover was the most fun to design.

Screen Shot 2017-08-20 at 12.52.53 PM

Sketching the Line

I made these drawings in late February 2017 while taking TTC around Toronto. The first one was selected to appear in the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) subway cars as part of their 2017 Art in Transit program, Sketching the Line.


Eastbound on King St E at Sumach St

Hey Mister, That’s a Brand New Streetcar! (514 Cherry St, westbound on King)

512 Cherry (King St W and John Ave)


In fall of 2016 I took an excellent drawing class from Michael Antkowiak at OCAD.


OCAD life drawing


California College of the Arts – Painting 101

roses test

I was very lucky to get to take a painting class at the California College of the Arts under the guidance of CCA painting guru/ philosopher/ life coach Bryan Keith Thomas and his invaluable and gifted TA, Chiyomi McKibbin.

Here’s an example of my evolution while in the class from February to May, 2014:

Self-Portrait (1st)

Self-Portrait (2nd)

Self-Portrait (final)

Polly at the Esalen Baths

This oil portrait, Polly at the Esalen Baths, was my fifth attempt halfway through the semester. Since the class has ended, I’ve done eight more portraits, but all in acrylic since I no longer have a great studio space like CCA’s, where I also did this French vase:


Midway through the semester our class showed a few pieces in the main nave of CCA’s SF campus, but I didn’t show at a real gallery until November 7-21, 2014, when these five pieces hung at the College Avenue Galleries for CCA’s International Student Exhibition.

Two digital watercolours, done on an iPad and iPhone:


Portrait Studies

In Bogdan Luca‘s brilliant portraiture class at OCADU, we delve deeper into understanding the forms by alternating classes in the clay and drawing studios, and on the last night will paint in acrylics.

fullsizeoutput_1585e   sculpture night

In the next class we did a few drawings from the same model, the last one in a 15-minute sprint with soft vine charcoal:

IMG_2999   IMG_0146   

All contents  ©Berenice Freedome

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