What is Contemporary Realism?
Contemporary realism is a term to describe a movement in the visual arts of a renewed interest in realistic drawing, painting and sculpting. Drawing from historical traditions and methods of past master artists, contemporary realism places emphasis on learning the skills of the medium and mastery of representation.
In short, it is a revival of interest in realistic art and how these traditional methods can be used to explore our current lives.
How can you learn it?
Anyone can learn to draw and sculpt realistically. All you need is patience, perseverance, and practice.
The contemporary realist movement has given rise to many small Academies and Ateliers (french for 'studio') that teach skill-based art methods. My sculpture classes follow these methods and offer a graduated learning curve: start with the basics and work towards the complex.
You will start with learning how to see. If you can't see it, you can't sculpt it!
The first projects are Drawing and Cast Copies: using a plaster reference cast of a sculpture, you strive to accurately recreate it in clay to train in the methods and techniques.
As you gain skills and confidence, you can begin to learn more about portraiture anatomy through a skull study, or gesture and constructive anatomy of the figure.
These studies all prepare you for working from life: using both portrait and nude models to study the forms and rhythms of the face and human figure.
Benefits of Sculpture
Sculpture is a rewarding process, and a very satisfying journey! It alters the way you see the world- you begin to notice details and forms in a new way. It also offers you an incredible new depth of appreciation of the art form.
Perhaps most importantly, it provides an avenue of creative expression where you are free to explore ideas and create with your hands, in the good company of others doing the same.