Today was my last day taking a drawing course taught by Albert Kuo at the Artists’ Guild of St. Louis. I did not realize it was our last session and found out at the very end.
This was an excellent class. We had a small group of students, six in all. We had a fabulous model, Stephanie Amber McNair, who knows how to set up a great pose and hold still. The fact that she has great bones whose prominences are visible through her skin, clearly defined muscles, and a beautiful face are all pluses as well. And we had Albert.
Albert is a youngish (32, but looks younger), calm, talented artist. Most important, however, he is an excellent teacher. Most of his classes start with a demonstration, or a slideshow of art selected to demonstrate a point, or both.
Today he talked about not being scared of the materials. Take risks. He suggested that most, if not all, great works of art totter on the edge between greatness and disaster, and that it is the willingness to accept disaster that allows an artist to make their best work. And what could go wrong? If you “make a mistake,” you can either go with it, go over it, or throw out the failure and start something new.
Most, if not all, great works of art totter on the edge between greatness and disaster.
I think that I have improved greatly in my drawing over the nine sessions of this class. I believe my classmates feel the same way. After today’s class ended, and everyone left, I went to the director of the Artists’ Guild to let her know that Albert’s classes were the best I had yet taken at the Guild.
Seriously, they were the best I had taken anywhere. Maybe it is just because I’m more ready for the material now than I was before, but I think it’s just because he is a superb teacher’s whose attitude is complementary to my own.