Sunday, July 10, 2011

Head Drawing Class Review (Continuing the Fred Fixler Lineage)

Yesterday concluded the 10 week Head Drawing course taught by Glen Orbik at 3Kicks Fine Arts Studio.  It was a really great class.

He is a what I would call the "old school teacher" - back when a teacher was also your mentor and friend. Glen always stayed after class and talk to you and look at your work.  He was not concerned with you learning his specific technique - but rather you learning the fundamentals and applying them. He always brought in various art books every week and encouraged us to learn and study from other artists.

In- Class Demo

Originals and Photographs of Fred Fixler's work
I expected an analytical, step-by-step approach to head drawing. However, Glen's teaching method was more about the art of balancing the 2D/ 3D aspects of drawing (2D refers to using shapes - a more painterly method. 3D means using construction - a more vis com/ ID method).  Prior to this class, I trained almost exclusively in one method - 3D drawing: Vis Com, Analytical Figure Drawing. Therefore, learning how to draw using 2D shapes and embracing the art of balance - rather than relying on the methodology of construction - was a huge challenge for me. I realized that was there was not one right way to draw - but many different ways - and it was my job to make those artistic decisions.

Glen's job was to incessantly challenge you. I would always be learning a new way of thinking and seeing every week:  losing edges, idealization, reilly rhythms, construction, shapes, values, composition. Just when I thought I was getting the hang of the lesson last week - Glen would give us another mountain to tackle.

Over the course of 10 weeks I learned many new tools and techniques. Now, it's time for me to actually put those tools to use, learn and create great work! Take his class if you have the chance - I highly recommend it.  

Originals of Fred Fixler's Work

Full-size Illustrations done by Glen Orbik and Laurel Blechman 


  1. Chris Chien! It's great seeing so much good work and consistency from you, and thanks for commenting on my blog the other day! Likewise, I'm trying hard to get more drawing in everyday too haha.

  2. Your site came up googling fred Fixler, What's the connection, although I see the head demo ;looking very much like freds workl. was your teacher a student of Fred??

  3. yeah my teacher - glen orbik - was a student of fred fixler.

  4. Great post Chris. Did Glen tell you he was my roomate for awhile. What a great guy. Tell him I said 'Hi' if you see him again.


    1. Thanks Greg. Yeah Glen told me you guys roomed together. He is pretty funny. I haven't seen him recently - but I'll send your regards if I do.