Elizabeth Alexander – Sink City

Elizabeth Alexander is currently taking our Illustrating Children’s Books Diploma and this is her Sink City artwork. Elizabeth explains to maggy how she created the illustration and her though process behind it.We think its a fantastic idea and illustration – Congratulations Elizabeth.

For the final piece of Sebastian’s sink city I used black pen for outline and for some texture and detail and used gouache paint to colour the image in and did it on NOT watercolour paper. I have drawn straight lines in pencil near the top of the page of where the text area would go on each page. On the left side I wrote Sebastian’s sink city in pencil with lines underneath to show it is a text area and on the right I drew straight pencil lines of another place text can go.

The text would be black. I used gouache because I liked the brightness and vibrancy of the paint. The final size includes the 5mm bleed. I tried adding a cartoon edge with the characters by using body shapes, such as the cottage and potato and had a go at exaggerating features and using simple shapes. The world under the kitchen sink have magic liquid bubbles as transport that the creatures can fly in and has an entrance tower and an exit tower. The bubble transport system lets them take city tour by air and there are also bubble boats so they can sail in the lake by the city park. The pipe is the bubble transport machine.

Elizabeth Alexander
Illustrating Children’s Books Diploma


Aisha Mussawa – Collection of Coursework

Aisha Mussawa is a student currently studying both our Drawing and Painting Diploma and Cartooning Diploma. Here is a collection of Aisha’s artwork and some text about them.

My name is Aisha Mussawa and I am from Saudi Arabia. I have took 2 Diploma,  Drawing and painting and Cartoons. Thanks to my tutor Paul Weaver and John Byrne for the encouraging words.
My inspirations –  It comes from the works of Impressionist school I love their work and Van Gogh brushwork so amazing. And I hope to find who supports my art ..  Below is my lastest work – oil painting ‘The Hope is Blooming’

Aisha Mussawa

Yolanda Twivey – Coloured Pencil Conkers

Yolanda Twivey studied our Coloured Pencil Course and completed a few years ago. We are revisiting her amazing coloured pencil drawing of conkers as it still remains to this day one of our favourite coloured pencil studies. Her use of limited pallet, subtly shaded background and the use of light and shade makes for a wonderful drawing. We hope that you are all as impressed as we are!

Yvonne Ryves – Coloured Pencil Bottle

Here we have a coloured pencil drawing of a bottle and a wine glass by Yvonne Ryves. We find that its quite often helpful for our students to see artwork and the photo of the objects that the student has worked from. This often helps give a sense of how elements within the drawing were achieved.

We encourage students to always work from life where they can and take photos of the scene, just in case they need to rework or look back at the piece. Its often helpful to have photographic reference, if the still life set up you are working from has to be moved from time to time while in the drawing process. This way you can get the items in the exact place / viewing angle to continue working.


Seana Kozar – Illustrating Children’s Books Diploma

Maggie has emailed us a wonderful illustration to add to the blog today, by student Seana Kozar.

Seana Said…

For the black-and-white texture piece I created a helter-skelter from an Arial bottle. We didn’t have helter-skelters in Canada, so I decided it could be a staging platform for multiple mini-spaceships. I used cross hatching of different types on the structure and stippling on the characters. The comic zap lines I left in to highlight the tiny main character, Sebastian Starboy, who is too small to go on the ride.

An excerpt from Maggy’s response is as follows…

The study of this helter-skelter is imaginative and creative. You have chosen a strong graphic approach, which makes it different and interesting. The character of the people is fun and fits in with the overall style of the piece well…..Overall a very good response to the exercise, well done. I’d like to show this image on the student gallery and blog to inspire other students.

Congratulations Seana on a  fantastic illustration!

Tutor Alan Dedman – Collective London

London Art College tutor Alan Dedman is preparing for an exhibition of paintings and drawings (Contemporary Art) from Somerset to central London, during May 2017.

Alan Needs You!
The Collective London, has generously offered to host a view-by-appointment show of Alan’s work during May 2017. To make it happen, funds are required for all costs including transport, packaging, publicity, insurance, private viewings etc. Your contributions can help achieve this. Allowing Alan to present an alternative to the mainstream; Art of Classical provenance, lively, colourful and eccentric.

Visit Alan’s Crowdfunding page and watch Alan’s video below

About Alan Dedman
Alan Dedman is a UK borne artist. Studied at Great Yarmouth, St. Martin’s and the Royal Academy Schools. Of the British tradition in painting – Alan’s work explodes with energy and colour, bridging the Classical/Post-modern divide. His fine draftsmanship, interwoven with powerful and informed use of colour – create an intimate engagement with human subject matter. Currently Alan Dedman operates from his studio in Somerset, where he has exhibited during regional arts weeks and in pop-up galleries. Showing in central London will make Dedman’s Art available to a wider audience and create fresh opportunities for future events.

If you want to find out more about Alan Dedman’s Art visit his Alan’s Art blog  and website Alan Dedman Artist.

Edward Javier – Oil Painting Course

Edward Javier is currently working on our Oil Painting Course under the guidance of professional oil painter and tutor Alan Dedman. The object of this exercise was to paint a view across an interior, through a door or window and into an exterior. Edward drew the corner of a room with a sofa bed. This has given Edward lots of flat tones and three dimensional shapes to deal with.

Edward said…

I am an engineer by profession and work in IT field. Art is more of a hobby for me, something I do on the side as opposed to making a living out of it. Nevertheless I still want to become good at it and hopefully, someday, I would be able to consider myself an artist rather than hobbyist. I want to go beyond landscapes. I want to be able to paint still life, portraits, animals, etc. Hopefully, I’ll be able to achieve these after this course.

Edward has created a fantastic step by step PDF using photos and text, to show Alan how he created his painting. We have extracted parts of it to show on our blog. We hope that our students find it  interesting and learn lots from reading and viewing the images. Let us know what you think, please comment below if you have any questions. We always love hearing from our students!

A4 size Acrylic paper
White Gesso,
Raw Sienna & Middle Grey Acrylic
Acrylic brush for priming
Water Mixable Oil paints (Lamp black, Raw Umber, Burnt Umber, Titanium White)
Paper towel
Oil Painting brushes
Thinner and Mediums

I mixed the Gesso with Raw Sienna & Middle Grey Acrylic. You can see the photo below showing it mixed.

I taped the reverse side of the papers into a canvas so I can mount it on easel. I applied 2 layers of mixture on each of the paper. After the gesso dried, I reverse the paper and followed same process as what I did for the the back. It’ll dry in few minutes.

Once the primer is completely dried, I used the limited palette to start blocking in the dark portion of the drawing. I used a bit of thinner to improve the flow. I used flat brush #12 for this exercise.

Using the same palette, I have applied another layer of paint on the walls. I have also darkened the bed’s railing and applied highlight. I have also applied highlight on the pillows, bed and bolster. I used a sword shape brush size 1/4″ for this exercise. I have also skipped using thinner for fat over lean rule.

Finished Painting


Mel Newing – collars & dog tongues!

My name is Mel Newing and I am currently studying the Pet Portraits Diploma Course tutored by Galye Mason.  The studies below are for Assignment 4 and I have added a work in progress and the final photo of the collar study. We have to complete 5 pieces all together. A nose, tongue, collar, toy in mouth and horse full face. The pastels are on Pastel Mat paper. I’m finding big love for pastels! Tongue is complete and the collar piece is getting some fur detail. I’d highly recommend people trying pastel – great fun to work with!

To say I’m chuffed with the pencil drawing piece is an understatement.  According to my timer I’ve spent 19 hrs doing it – I think I forgot to turn it off at some point – but it has taken what felt like an age! I know I only needed to do the toy and mouth but I couldn’t help finish this picture – I was so close to scrapping it but sheer stubbornness kicked in and I stuck with it.  The ball sent me a bit fruit loop and I was tempted to make it smooth to make it easier but where’s the fun in easy?!  haha!  Challenge….complete!

Mel Newing
Pet Portraits Diploma Course