I'm interested in what's being taught a couple of the courses there and what the instructors are like.
If anyone is currently attending the Laguna College of Art and Design I'd love to hear what classes you are taking and some of the mentalities and less ones being taught in the classes.
I'm interested in the entire curriculum, but a few courses are of particular interest.
Animal Drawing 1 : How is form analysis taught in the class, and what systems of proportion are used. I've watched the Gnomon DVD taught by the instructor, but I'm really curious as to the exact process that is used to break things down. Are any measurements used, or is it simply a process of using notional 3D volumes?
Visual Development 1 : Just looking for a general overview here.
Sequential Art: Again any information about the instructor or the course itself that isn't outlined online would be appreciated.
I haven't taken the classes yet, but anyone who has doesn't seem to be speaking up or be in this forum at the moment so I thought I'd tell you what I do know.
I'm planning to take the Animal Drawing and Visual Storytelling (New name for the Sequential Art class) classes this following year, and while I haven't actually taken the classes yet, I've taken a seminar with Marshall Vandruff before and he was really great.
I spoke to another student who was in his Visual Storytelling class this previous semester and he enjoyed it a lot, so I have high hopes for this following semester when I take Visual Storytelling.
I would guess that the classes are like extended versions of his seminars and the video/imagineFX article on Animals. (He says on his website actually that the animal seminar is a boiled down version of the class.)
I took animal drawing with Marshall Vandruff last fall. It is really a great class. Marshall has a way of breaking down form and anatomy that makes you realize the similarities all animals (us included) have in both skeletal and anatomical structure. He is very attentive with his class and organizes great lectures that include tons of opportunities for drawing in class, so you get to put this knowledge into practice. This course also includes several field trips to the zoo and an equestrian center which allows you to draw from life. I'm a drawing & painting major, so this course was not one of my requirements, but it has been so helpful for me in my figurative work.
His approach to form is to consider the basic shapes that lie as a foundation to which the anatomy wraps around. The perspective of the shape is easily established by thinking of wrapping a rubber band around the form. He then goes into a very simple method of comparative measurement. After taking his class I've seen my drawings from life improve dramatically. I am able to invent figures/creatures because I've gained an understanding of how to manipulate anatomy in a way that looks convincing.
I know a few people that have taken visual storytelling with great success. From what I've heard, the main project in that class is to first come up with a story and then create it in visual means, like a storyboard. From the work I've seen, this class can provide you with strong compositional skill and an understanding of how to design a scene in order to get the most emotional punch.
Marshall is a GREAT teacher. He really cares about his students and is always available when you need help. You will gain so much from his class if you put up the effort. There wasn't one person in my class that did not see there drawings improve. Oh and as a bonus, he shares the most awesome stories about his professional experience.
I hope this was helpful to you. Feel free to message me if you have any other questions.