Marvin Mattelson lays down his palette and uses his words

Portrait Drawing & Oil Portrait Painting: Online Workshop Schedule 2021

July 13, 2021
Workshop portrait drawing by Irena Moreno

Makin' it More Real than Reality

What makes the old masters old masters, and why is that magic missing in the work of the vast majority of today's realists? The paintings by Rembrandt, Velasquez and Van Dyck appear more alive than the spectators trapesing through the museums to view them. Today's artists either over-render their subjects into lifeless photocopies, making them indistinguishable from blown up photographs (regardless of whether they worked from life or photography) or they try to "capture the visual impression" (using overzealous brushwork which ultimately flattens the 3-D illusion). The old masters understood that reality was a starting point and by applying the their knowledge of visual phenomena and human perception, they were able to manipulate their paintings and make them look more alive than reality.

Can’t believe it's been over a week since we finished the workshop and I am still trying to catch up with all the things I didn’t have time to do then. I meant to write as soon as we finished but the days just seem to have blown by. I still need to find the time to write a proper recommendation of both courses. They were amazing, and for me who had been completely apart from producing art for so long it was a great reintroduction in the best way possible.  For now, I am glad to tell you that I have managed to keep painting, even if only a couple of days a week, and have started a portrait of my son Nicolas. Will send pictures soon but so far I think it's the best thing I’ve done! - Irena Moreno
Marvin Mattelson's Online Portrait Drawing Workshop:
Makin' it More Real than Reality
5 Daily Sessions • August 2 - 6, 2021 • 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Tuition: $550 • Class size limit: 15 students

This summer I'll be teaching two online workshops, a five day portrait drawing workshop (August 2-6), as well as an eleven day portrait painting workshop (August 9-20). If you haven't studied with me previously, in addition to teaching all of the technical aspects, what separates my approach is that I explain the fundamental underlying principles that are present in all great representational paintings. Following rules is the antithesis of creativity. In addition you will receive substantial feedback and guidance from me directly. All this is presented in a high-definition multi camera set-up, further enhanced by a variety of digital presentations. This new format allows both new and previous students alike, to experience a never-before possible close-up view of every single brushstroke. You will witness the evolution of my portrait from a blank canvas to a completed painting. Accompanied by detailed commentary and a thorough explanation of each and every step, you will have the opportunity to ask questions to further clarify your comprehension.

Workshop portrait painting by Jessica Pester
Workshop portrait painting by Jessica Pester

My teaching is rooted in mindful learning, where each action you take is motivated by deep understanding. It is the only path to true creative expression. If you are looking to effect significant change, and up the level of your work, you need more than a few hours or even a weekend to absorb and digest the knowledge necessary for a transformational shift in the quality of your work. If you believe that watching a video, attending a three hour webinar, a weekend long workshop or a seminar can provide that magic pill, think again. Since the vast majority of teaching is based on rote learning, the linear application of rules, at best you'll find yourself mired in the dogmatic purgatory of stylistic limitations. Study with me and you will learn the true secrets of the old masters.

Space is limited to a maximum of 15 students.

I’ve taken Marvin’s class in person more times than I can remember. So when I signed up for his first ever virtual class, I expected that Marvin would be well equipped and quick to adapt to the new environment. And still, he exceeded my expectations. In fact, my workshop painting absolutely is, hands down, the best painting I've ever done. I'm excited to see what my next one will look like!

Marvin’s virtual painting class is truly the best ad for Zoom. Marvin has not only managed to replicate the in studio experience, but has taken it to the next level. Every student has the best seat in the house while he’s demonstrating, thanks to his birds-eye-view lenses and three-way split-screen. He has also enhanced his second-to-none feedback with tools like Photoshop and Capture One, so that he can very clearly show students how to make their paintings “more right.”

I can never get enough of being in Marvin’s presence, he knows this and he’s aware that this might be the one shortcoming of the new set up. But the advances he’s made with the virtual set up and the opportunity to be in class with students from all over the world have definitely made it worth it. Not to mention, it’s nice to paint in your pajamas.
- Jessica Pester
Marvin Mattelson's Online Oil Portrait Painting Workshop:
Makin' it More Real than Reality
11 Daily Sessions • August 9 - 20, 2021* • 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Tuition: $1250 • Class size limit: 15 students

Click here for more information or to register for the workshops.

Click here to see students' work and read their feedback.

Read more about his virtual class setup and his teaching methodology.

Marvin Mattelson is now conducting his classes and workshops online in Full HD 1080p through his Fine Art Portrait Academy. For further information, or to register for an upcoming offering, please follow this link to his teaching page. The Saturday class will run from Sept 18 - Dec 11.

Until next time...

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