Author Archives: mygbkartclasses

Art 2 – Science Illustration – Birds – Due 11/3


1. Take notes when you watch the following video and think carefully about what James Prosek says about seeing nature:

Note also what Jane Kim says about her art, painting birds:

2. Read about the exhibition “Maria Sibylla Merian and Daughters: Women of Art and Science.” Watch the slideshow and read or listen to all of the commentary for each and take notes.

Maria Sibylla Merian and Daughters: Women in Art and Science

3. Watch the following two technical videos:


4. And last but not least, here is a site with beautiful drawings from the Farallon Islands by a professional illustrator, Sophie Webb. Maybe you know some of her books!

Sophie Webb


Photo journal inspiration #7


Here is the story behind the iconic photo of Che Guevara by Alberto Korda

Behind Korda’s iconic photo

Here is a behind the scenes account of Burri’s experience in making photos of Che Guevarra

 Story behind Burri’s photo

The International Center for Photography has some interesting photos in shows commemorating Cuba, Che, and the Revolution.

ICP: Cuba in Revolution

Notice how some of the portraits of him are translated into other media for commercial purposes:

ICP: Che, revolution, and commerce


AP 2D design – food for thought #2


Know your why:

There are some embedded stereotypes in this video that need to be addressed in our discussion. Nevertheless, the musical illustration is one which can help to clarify your own artistic process.

As you begin work on your Concentration – your Sustained Investigation – bring your “why” into focus and the “what” will follow.

Photo journal inspiration #6


Consider especially: “It was not enough that photographers be ‘mere witnesses’…..” What does he advocate? What do you think?

Look up Frank’s The Americans as a “masterpiece for its stark realism and empathetic vision.”

What does he say about editing photo books? Do you agree? Consider your process of making books…..

Look up Koudelka’s Gypsies for inspiration.

How did he get his start in publishing?

Look up some of the other photographers he worked with: Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Doisneau, Robert Capa, Inge Morath Brassai, William Klein.

Read the last 2 paragraphs and consider how it relates to your work in photography.



OPEN STUDIOS – Art 1,2,3, AP, Photo classes, and Ceramics – Oct. 7-8, Oct. 14-15, Oct. 21-22 – Due by Mon. Oct. 23


Over the next 3 weekends, Santa Cruz County artists will open their studios to visitors to show their art and art making processes.

Attend a total of 3 artist studios. (AP, Photo, and Ceramics students must attend at least 3 that are specific and relevant to their current work.)

For each visit, write down the artist’s name, take notes, and be ready to share in class:

1. your impressions of each studio and artwork. Include a small drawing of something that interests you in the studio (the art, materials, work space, etc.).

2. the artist’s techniques and processes (this information is posted in the studio; if you don’t see it, ask about their technique).

3. the inspiration for your own art work (either by a desire to emulate the artist or for a manner to differentiate your work from the artist).

For extra credit, Sept 30-Oct. 22 attend the Preview Show at the Santa Cruz Art League at 526 Broadway ( or attend the R. Blitzer Gallery Preview Show 2801 Mission from Oct 6-22 ( Make sure you check the hours before you go.  For the credit, share the artist and title for what you would award as the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in the whole show and explain why.

Students may attend the studios together but must have independent notes.  You may become interested in visiting particular artists by hearing others’ comments.

Do all three on one weekend or one each weekend, but don’t leave until the last day! You can share your visits each Monday over the next few weeks, or on the final Monday (October 23rd). Plan it out.

There are Guide Booklets in art rooms 216 and 222 with maps if you want to plan your weekend trips.  North County is the first weekend,  South County the second, and some artists are open for the third All County weekend.

Art 2 – Scratchboard – Flowers, Drawing the Light – 10/16


In your sketchbook, take notes and sketch ideas on all of the following.

View the Russ McMullins scratchboard tutorial:


and the video tutorial by Matt Fussell:

View the compositions and techniques in the link below:

scratchboard flowers

Read about the ideas regarding each of these flower paintings.  Look at the comments, the symbolism, and the composition in each:

10 flower paintings to know

At home, research ideas (in books and online) about the symbolism of flowers and the particular meaning you want to signify by the flower you choose. You may bring in a real flower to work from, a photo you have taken of a flower, or use a photo from the internet of a flower (as long as you combine it with foliage from another photo and change the composition).

You will be using cross contours as you scratch away the light. Note the method of looking at light rather than dark as you draw.  How is it different from the way you usually see and usually draw?  What will your aesthetic goals be for this scratchboard drawing, and for your Creative Extension?

UC Santa Cruz Arboretum

Art 3 – Process of Abstraction – Scully and Mehretu – 10/16


Watch the following video and make notes in your sketchbook on key issues and questions that Scully introduces on abstraction.


1. the video of Julie Mehretu working on a large scale mural,

2. a gallery site containing her drawings and paintings,

3. a video interview about some of that work which was on exhibit, and

4. a summary bio from Wikipedia.

In your sketchbook, list your responses to her creative process.  Consider: What do you think guides her in her creative process? Why is that little yellow square so important in its placement?  How does she decide what to add, take out, or leave in the piece?  Why do you think she avoids talking about the piece in formal art terms (elements and principles of design)? Why is it important to her that she starts on a ground rather than blank white canvas/paper?



Think about what your process will be in creating an abstract piece, and whether or not yours will have any similarities to hers.

For your interest, currently at the SFMOMA:

Howl, eon (I, II), 2017