This class is the medicine you need whether you know it or not.

This is the prescription that will make you better, the exercise that will make you faster, the vegetables, the antioxidants of art. Most beginning artists don’t know they need it or find it difficult and skip it to the detriment of their art.

Making a great illustration requires good drawing and rendering skills, BUT, many don’t realize that there’s a preliminary process that MUST take place first. Composing the image is essential to creating a beautiful painting, illustration, graphic novel image, comic panel, or book cover image. Drawing characters, objects and environments accurately and in proportion is a good foundation to making a great image but it’s only part of what you need. Putting everything together to create a complete image with effective eye movements, balance, focal points, legibility, and communication requires good design skills.

In this class you will learn:

  • The 4 principles of design

  • How to apply these principles in planning your image

  • How to make your images more legible

  • How to make complex images look simple

  • How to create a hierarchy of focal points

  • Methods of working up from a thumbnail sketch to finished drawing

About the Instructor

Illustrator

Will Terry

Will Terry has been a freelance illustrator for 26 years. He got his start working for magazines and newspapers in the Washington D.C. area. His early clients include publications such as Time, Money, WSJ and ads for Sprint, Pizza Hut, Fed Ex, and Master Card. He has illustrated about 30 children’s books for a number of publishers, including Random House, Simon & Schuster, Scholastic, and Penguin. When he's not mountain biking, hiking, or snowboarding he works out of the svslearn.com office in Provo Utah. 

Course curriculum

  1. 1
    • What is Design

    • Workbook and Checklist

    • Exercise 1: Tracing Thumbnails

  2. 2
    • Rule of Thirds

    • Exercise 2: Space Division

    • Exercise 3: Rule of Thirds

    • Image Edge

    • Exercise 4: Image Edge

    • Negative Space

    • Exercise 5: Negative Space

    • POV

    • Exercise 6: Camera Placement

    • Exit Lines

    • Exercise 7: Draw Through

    • Exercise 8: Forced Perspective Thumbnailing

    • Small, Medium, Huge

    • Exercise 9: Overlapping

    • Exercise 10: Adding Foreground

    • Straights curves

    • Scale

    • Tangents

    • Exercise 11: Tangents

    • Implied Lines

    • Shape

    • Exercise 12: Fitting Objects Together

    • Simplify Complex Shapes

    • Exercise 13: Simplifying Complex Shapes

    • Organic Shape

    • Exercise 14: Random/Organic Shapes

  3. 3
    • Focal Points

    • Exercise 15: Ideal Focal Points

    • Symbolism

    • Cropping

    • Color

    • Leading Lines

    • Silhouette

    • Exercise 16: Emphasis

    • Framing

    • Exercise 17: Value Grouping

    • Edges

    • Exercise 18: Multiple Focal Points

  4. 4
    • Balance

  5. 5
    • Line Rhythm

    • Exercise 19: Lines

    • Anatomy

    • Details

    • Style

    • Color unity

  6. 6
    • Exercise 20: Master Copy

    • Penguin thumb demo

    • Assignment 1: Create a composition

  • 29

    hours of HD video instruction

  • 4

    Hours

  • 2

    PDF

Reviews

5 star rating

Superb

Sasha Frost

So many of the SVS courses are brilliant, but as someone who's come to working with image-making from an untraditional pathway, I've found this course so hel...

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So many of the SVS courses are brilliant, but as someone who's come to working with image-making from an untraditional pathway, I've found this course so helpful for thinking about how to construct and analyze an image. Thanks Will.

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5 star rating

This course will take you to the next level

Jeff Corrigan

This course is broken up very well. It’s simple to follow and the principles are taught in a way that makes them easy to implement immediately. I’ve seen my ...

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This course is broken up very well. It’s simple to follow and the principles are taught in a way that makes them easy to implement immediately. I’ve seen my drawing jump a whole level just by using the thumbnails and Bean shape principles. Plus it’s just amazing to watch Mr. Jake Parker work on the bonus video.

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4 star rating

Terry is an amazing teacher.

Juan Rodriguez

It took me a long time to realize how important the design is. There is so much to learn in this course, particularly on the critics. Wonderful job also from...

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It took me a long time to realize how important the design is. There is so much to learn in this course, particularly on the critics. Wonderful job also from Jake Parker and Guy Francis.

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5 star rating

Love the revamped course!

Donella Ly

I love the re-design of the updated course. The short segments are really nice snack size bites of information. I also really enjoy Will Terry's teaching s...

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I love the re-design of the updated course. The short segments are really nice snack size bites of information. I also really enjoy Will Terry's teaching style. The course content itself was very helpful in understanding some fundamental design principles.

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5 star rating

Tremendously Helpful

Emily Bier

Pleased with this course. The material was clearly presented. A couple of concepts were clarified to me that previously I wasn't quite grasping. I appreciat...

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Pleased with this course. The material was clearly presented. A couple of concepts were clarified to me that previously I wasn't quite grasping. I appreciated the examples from a variety of artists. The process videos from initial thumbnailing onward were particularly helpful. Thanks for another great class!

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5 star rating

Better than College

Danielle Westphal

I got more out of this introduction video than I have in 1 semester of college art classes. If this first lecture was this good, then I cannot wait to get st...

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I got more out of this introduction video than I have in 1 semester of college art classes. If this first lecture was this good, then I cannot wait to get started with the rest of this course. Will Terry's knowledge is gold! He does an amazing job of explaining basic design principles by giving visuals and getting straight to the point. Great job Will!

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5 star rating

Creative Composition for understanding more illustration

Susan Szecsi

Fun and informative course with a lot of demos and examples. Homework/extra downloadable pdf with exercises to deepen your knowledge.

Fun and informative course with a lot of demos and examples. Homework/extra downloadable pdf with exercises to deepen your knowledge.

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