An­drew Theophilopou­los

The il­lus­tra­tor and ed­u­ca­tor on how life-draw­ing in­flu­ences him

ImagineFX: Sci-fi & Fantasy Art magazine - - Imaginenation - Con­cep­tual artist An­drew cre­ates art­work for film, games and tele­vi­sion, as well as the pub­lish­ing in­dus­try. www.an­drewtheo.com

What kind of il­lus­tra­tions do you en­joy cre­at­ing?

Sci­ence and hu­man ex­plo­ration have been con­sis­tent in­flu­ences in my work and I most en­joy study­ing an­cient and alien life. My dream job is to be the res­i­dent artist on the Star­ship En­ter­prise.

When teach­ing at Rin­gling, what are your stu­dents’ most com­mon prob­lems?

My stu­dents have a bru­tal sense of fail­ure when their life draw­ings aren’t ac­cu­rate to re­al­ity, as though the goal of their art was to cre­ate photo re­al­ism, or that fail­ure means you’re not learn­ing.

What ad­vice do you give?

I tell them the goal is to cre­ate a beau­ti­ful im­age within the bound­aries of your can­vas: even­tu­ally, the anatomy, struc­ture, light, colour and mood will find its way in. Push­ing through each fail­ure will re­veal the next step in your jour­ney. Failed at­tempts are lessons learned.

What do you draw with?

When I was in school, I was the first and only kid in the class­room with a tablet and an in­ter­est in Pho­to­shop paint­ing. Many of my teach­ers would frown upon dig­i­tal art be­cause they didn’t yet un­der­stand the value of its ease of use. Now, I freely switch be­tween oil paint and Pho­to­shop.

How can we ben­e­fit from do­ing life draw­ing?

No two fig­ure mod­els are alike, no two light­ing sce­nar­ios are the same. Study­ing from life will help you re­alise there isn’t a for­mula to re­al­ity – only chaos. If you can’t hear the breath of a char­ac­ter or smell its bizarre fra­grance, your art may be fol­low­ing a for­mula.

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