composition in art

The Importance of Composition in Art

One of Danny Gregory’s biggest idols is back. Felix Scheinberger, illustrator and author of Urban Watercolor Sketching and the upcoming Dare to Sketch taught one of our most popular watercoloring klasses

Composition in Art

Have you ever met one of your idols in person? That’s one of the best things about my job as Sketchbook Skool’s co-founder. I get to go from being a fan to being a friend of the artists I admire.

For years, I have loved Felix Scheinberger’s work. It has a looseness and a wit that I hunger for in my own work. But Felix isn’t just a cartoonist and an illustrator — he’s a skilled reportage artist who records the things he sees in front of him, from the nightclubs of Berlin to the back alleys of Jerusalem.

I have known Felix for years. He appears in my book An Illustrated Journey, he taught in Expressing at SBS last year, and I’ve hung out with him in Berlin. But I’ve never seen him draw in person — until recently.

When Felix came to New York a few months ago, he wanted to draw my dogs, Joe and Tim. He pulled out his travel sketching kit and knocked out a wonderful spread in his journal.

If you look at Felix’s drawings for a while, you’ll start itching to draw. That’s because the way he draws seems so do-able. It’s free and simple and imprecise, but with loads of character.

The more I study Felix’s work, the more I realize how crucial composition and design are to his pages. Even though his drawings feel manic and ferocious, his pages seem considered and planned. He uses white space and places his hand-lettered captions so skillfully to make his rough lines feel dynamic and balanced. Wouldn’t you love to know more about how he does that? I would.

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