Great ideas aren't found, they are forged.

Ideas are pursued, shaped, refined and crafted. The world of commercial art requires the professional visual artist, illustrator, animator and designer to work within the confines of time, space, audience and story. 

IDEATION LAB O1 LIVE: Commercial Art introduces specific methodologies for generating authentic ideas within the limitations of commercial projects.

Discovered and put to use through my 20 + career as an illustrator, artist, writer, Professor and as Founder of Legendeer, this program outlines an explanation of the problems that we face, and delivers a specific process by which to solve them. I have shared and refined the principles of this course over years of teaching professionals and students across disciplines as varied as illustration, animation, design, painting, gaming, comics, science fiction, fantasy, fashion, business, dance, advertising, editorial, and illustrated books.

Course Overview:

This four week course meets LIVE once per week and pairs you with other students within the same enrollment period. Through the discussion forum, share in your idea development and growth as you receive twice a week lessons, assignments, demonstrations, case studies and relevant course materials. Ideation Lab O1 is a prerequisite for Ideation Lab O2: Making Commercial Work Personal.

Learn to generate unique ideas that communicate powerful messages. Ideation Lab O1 is dedicated to understanding how to work within the confines of client projects and to use those limitations as powerful tools in shaping a unique ideas

Course Outcomes:

Students completing this 4 week course will have a clear understanding in how to approach client problem solving and limitations and how to use those limitations to produce intelligent and thoughtful solutions. Students will leave this course having identified the next steps required to move them forward in their creative development.

Course Goals:

Over the  past twenty years working as a professional commercial artist and Professor, I have developed a specific methodology to teaching that is designed to make efficient use of student time and to shorten the time it takes to develop more advanced, professional level skills. Students will have three types of assignments listed as:

Primary, Secondary and a Final  Project. Each type focuses on different levels of skill, idea, process and completion.

Learn how to:

  • Break down complex stories into simple elements.
  • Develop your own creative way of shaping and sharing ideas.
  • Generate creative solutions within client constraints.
  • Give yourself relevant assignments for your own  professional development.
  • Better understand when ideas working.
  • Use specific tools and materials to amplify your concepts.

This course is made up of three types of videos:

1: Lessons- Videos that address specific topics each week.

2: Demos- Video lessons that demonstrate specific techniques, processes and applications

3: Case Studies: Videos that feature projects from inception to completion across a wide range of project types.

Course Level:

Beginning to Intermediate. 

Course Requirements:

Commitment, Time, Computer access, Quality internet connection.


To be listed.


Course Delivery:

This 4 week course consists of twice a week classes in the form of videos, assignments, demonstrations and/or handouts.

In each lesson, the Instructor will present a new topic related to Idea Development. This will consist of video lectures, demos, pdf handouts, and related materials.

Included with the class:

  • LIVE Critiques with Sterling Hundley each week from 7-9pm, Eastern Time on Fridays
  • Access to all class materials during your enrollment
  • Discussion area to ask work with other students in a peer-to-peer format
  • Downloadable homework and resource files
  • Written assignments and visual assignments


  • Basic level of drawing ability
  • Good internet connection
  • Drawing/painting supplies

Course Schedule:

Your Orientation will begin on Friday, January 18th and will give you the weekend to prepare for the official start of the course on Monday, January 21st. This course will meet LIVE once per week on Fridays from 7-9pm Eastern Time. LIVE sessions will be recorded for review by students who cannot attend the class LIVE. 


  • Cost is $275 for non-members of SVS and $250 for SVS members. To subscribe, go to to enroll in the monthly or annual plan.
  • There will be weekly assignments (plan for this!)


9 fully realized value thumbnails and related process work 

3 fully realized grayscale drawings, 

3 media studies, 

1 fully realized final complete portfolio pieces.



  • Primary- 1 Per week at (2-3 hours+). Ideation and Design process work
  • Secondary- 1 Per week (1 hour). Skill development through media experiments
  • FINAL- 1 Fully realized finished illustration/image the last week of the course.


Refund Policy:
* cancellation up to 14 days before class starts: full refund
* cancellation 1 - 13 days before class starts: 75% refund
* cancellation during the first week of class: 50% refund
* cancellation during the second week of class and after: 0%

Please Note: When you enroll, we are reserving your seat, and others are not able to sign up. Because it can be challenging to fill seats when there are last minute cancellations, we only offer partial refunds once we are within 13 days of the class start date. However, if you are able to sell your seat to another student, we are happy to give a full refund 😀

Course curriculum

  • 1


    • START HERE: OOA_Lesson OO: Orientation

    • OOB_Download: Assignment Sheet

    • OOC: Video: Course Introduction

    • OOD: Video: Importance of Ideas

    • OOE: Video: Project Organization & Ledger

    • OOFA_Download: Project Ledger (PDF)

    • OOFB_Download: Project Ledger (Excel)

    • OOG_Download: Glossary of Terms

    • OOH_Sketchbook Example

    • Orientation Q&A

    • HOMEWORK: Daily Sketchbook and Media studies

  • 2

    CLASS I. Narrative

    • O1_Lesson O1: Narrative

    • O2_Assignments: Week O1

    • O3_Video: Limitations

    • O4_Video: Sketchbooks

    • O5_Download: Commercial Art Model

    • O6_Download: Narrative Illustration Process

    • O6B_Download: Narrative Illustration Examples

    • Q&A, Lesson O1

  • 3

    CLASS II. Narrative (continued)

    • O7_Lesson O2: The Narrative Storyteller

    • O8_Video: 3-Sided Box in Commercial Art

    • O9_Video: Case Study O1: Narrative Illustration

    • 1O_Video: Demonstration O1: Silhouettes

    • 11_Download: 3- Sided Box

    • Assignment: Week O1 Submission & Discussion Thread, Spring 2019


    • *SPRING 2019 *Audio only file from Recorded LIVE critique on January 25, 2019.

  • 4

    CLASS III. Conceptual

    • 13_Lesson O3: Conceptual

    • 14_Assignments: Week O2

    • 15_Video: Narrative VS Conceptual

    • 16_Case Study O2: Conceptual

    • 17_Download: Conceptual Illustration Process

  • 5

    CLASS IV. Conceptual (continued)

    • 18_Lesson O4: Conceptual (continued)

    • 19_Video: Demonstration O2: Monotype

    • Assignment: Week O2 Submission & Discussion Thread Spring 2019


  • 6

    CLASS V. Conceptual VS Narrative

    • 2O_Lesson O5: Concept + Narrative

    • 21_Download: Assignments Week O3

    • 22_Video: Conceptual VS Narrative

    • 23_Video: Case Study O3: Conceptual Narrative

  • 7

    CLASS VI. Conceptual VS Narrative (continued)

    • 24_Lesson O6: Concept + Narrative (continued)

    • 25_Video: Demonstration O3: Mixed Media

    • Assignment: Week O3 Submission & Discussion Thread Spring 2019

  • 8

    CLASS VII. Execution & Workflow- Medium

    • 26_Lesson O7: Execution & Workflow

    • 27_Download: Assignment Week O4

    • 28_Video: Mark-Making

  • 9

    CLASS VIII. Our Tools- Medium

    • 29_Lesson: Time, tools, and a touch of faith

    • 30_Video: The four Acts of Creativity

    • Assignment: Week O4 Submission & Discussion Thread, Spring 2019

    • Assignment: Week O4 FINAL CRITIQUE

  • 10

    CLASS IX. Next Things

    • 31_Lesson O8: Our Tools/Final Class

    • 32_Download: Self-Directed Syllabus


Subscribe to SVSLearn and we will show you how. 

Our videos are custom made to show you how to get the skills necessary to break into the dynamic field of illustration.

Learn More