Muchos MECA!

Posted by on Apr 29, 2016 in Art Classes, drawing, Illustration, Maine College of Art | 0 comments

The spring semester at Maine College of Art is nothing if not frenzied. A LOT happens, and for many reasons, this one was jam packed. My class of junior illustration majors began with a bang: a Sweet Art Shop of valentines had to be installed at the Portland Museum of Art just one week after their return from winter break. Hustle, I said, and they DID.


Maxwell Erwin’s packed an eyeful of desires.


Cody Gauthier’s valentine tells a short lonely story, perhaps you can relate?


We moved into an editorial project, with students choosing from one of three magazine articles. A Rolling Stone piece about David Bowie got the most takers. Here is a striking Ziggy by Amelia Walz:


Meghan Wilson chose a Nautilus psychology article about animal self-awareness.


Haley Flight chose a New Yorker fiction story, putting her fondness for patterns to work.


The next challenge was to apply an illustration as surface design. Mattea Weinberg drew a slew of art museums from all over the world, and fit them on a phone.


Lewis Rossignol created 3 skate deck designs from his notebooks.


Meghan Wilson created wrapping paper for a birthday party.


Meanwhile between projects we also drew from a model. Amelia Walz’s watercolor drips with drama.


We also drew from each other. Here Annelise Zeender models, captured by her peers.


In the halls, MECA work was all over in Through and Through, a display for the NASAD accreditation underway.

It involved gathering student work from three years of courses, in every department. A tedious task, but ultimately very gratifying. Here’s a little slice from  junior students then and now.


Our fourth project tied in with March’s Shakespeare fever in Portland. Actor and founder of Guerrilla Downtown,  Linda Shary, joined the conversation as Guest Critter for a work-in-progress critique of poster illustrations for a Shakespeare play.


Here is Gunnar Johnson‘s for Macbeth.


Maxwell Erwin played with the essence of a duel.


Annelise Zeender’s cut paper illustration for The Tempest blew us away.


In March, MECA enjoyed a visit from Bob Mankoff, Cartoon Editor of the New Yorker along with Emily Flake.


They came for a special screening of Very Semi Serious, and stayed to be hilarious and lead a cartooning workshop with some lucky students. We did a few of the exercises in class later, drawing the same thing within ever smaller time frames.

How about a bat, at 4 minutes, 2 minutes, 30 seconds, and 5 seconds.


Or a burglar?

Students had the final month to work on a series of three illustrations of their choosing.

Cody created character studies for the Sandlot, and Ham was the class favorite.


Mattea illustrated a series of local bakeries, with Union Bagel making us all hungry.


Gunnar created three portraits of our presidential candidates.


Everyone pulled off such a variety of solutions! From politics to panaceas, this junior class worked all the angles.

They trekked to Peaks for a studio visit right before the final class.


It was my honor to share the classroom and studio with these growing talents.

Have a great summer, illo ninjas, and keep those eyes and pencils sharp. Tomorrow I’m off to see what the Textile and Fashion students have been up to. MECAmorphosis, here I come!

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