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Copy of Charles Bargue 18th century drawing course by Andrew Boatright. Pencil on paper.

Summer Teen Workshop: OUR MISSION IS TO DEVELOP, EDUCATE AND TRAIN ARTISTS IN THE FIGURATIVE TRADITION, GIVING ARTISTS THE SKILLS TO FREELY EXPRESS THEIR OWN UNIQUE ARTISTIC VISION. For several decades now colleges and universities throughout the U.S. have departed from a traditional approach to art education and have emphasized self-expression and theory over the development of realist drawing and painting skills. In contrast, the Texas Academy of Figurative Art is part of a growing movement of

ateliers which offer education and training that is anchored in the timeless traditions of realist art while being fully engaging and relevant in the contemporary art movement. The Texas Academy of Figurative Art was founded in 2007 to offer an alternative in the North Texas region to the declining educational philosophies of local universities and colleges. Our focus is specifically on the education and development of artists who are interested in classically based realism. The skills we teach have also proven to be a beneficial foundation to those pursuing careers in animation,

July 7-18

illustration, gaming design and other fields of study in digital graphics. TAFA is the only academy of its kind in Texas that offers a focused curriculum in realist art that is centered on the human figure. We hold to the belief that realistic figurative art which is grounded in a traditional understanding of proportion, anatomy and portraiture is the key to visual art education. This ideal should be built on a foundation of superior drawing and painting skills. From here a student can truly experience artistic creativity, freedom, and self-expression with learned confidence. .


Two week summer art training intensive Summer 2014

The Texas Academy of Figurative Art Is pleased to present the first Summer Teen Workshop, July 7-18. Our program and curriculum has great appeal to aspiring young artists. Since many young students have never been exposed to the principles of realist art, our classically-based curriculum offers High School students the opportunity to anchor their drawing and painting skills in classical methodology as well as enhance their portfolio preparations.

Course Objective: Students will complete: * 1 Old Master Bargue Drawing • 1 Painted Still-life • 1 Self-portrait

Examples of TAFA student drawings from the 18th Century Charles Bargue Drawing Course

Bargue Drawing - pencil on paper Ethan Zawadskey- - Age 18

Course Curriculum Weeks 1 & 2 - morning session Students will reconstruct one Old Master drawing and work from the 19th Century Charles Bargue Drawing Course¹. The emphasis is on accuracy, skillful technique, and representing form through line. This project will be completed on toned paper with pencil. 1.Gerald M. Ackerman, Charles Bargue, with the collaboration of Jean-Leon Gerome: Drawing Course, Paris, ACR Edition, 2003, 336 pp., incl. 196 plates of the Drawing Course.


Still life (left) - oil on canvas - Andrew Boatright

Still life (below) - oil on canvas - Katy Hamilton

Week 1 - afternoon session The focus in the afternoon session - week 1 will be still-life painting from life. An overview of the realist painting process and methodology will be introduced, as well as an in depth understanding of materials, mediums and pigments will be established.

Portrait drawing - (left) Katy Hamilton - charcoal and chalk on toned paper Portrait drawing - (below) Ron Cheek - charcoal and chalk on toned paper

Week 2 - afternoon session The focus of week two will be the study of portraiture through drawing a self-portrait in charcoal and white chalk on toned paper. An overview of human anatomy and proportion will covered throughout the duration of the project.


Director Ron Cheek Get Water - oil on Canvas Vanity Vanity Canvas - oil on


History of the School The Texas Academy of Figurative Art was founded in 2007, in Fort Worth, Texas by Ron A. Cheek. Cheek has 15 years of teaching and professional painting experience, and he has taught for Tarrant County College, TCU, Texas A&M University, as well as many public & private workshops. Prior to founding TAFA, Cheek studied at the Florence Academy of Art in Florence, Italy from 1997 to 2001. Upon returning to the United States, Cheek had the vision for beginning a similar program in Texas. After surveying students over several years he found that many younger students felt both alienated and doubtful of the trends toward conceptual art at higher level art education. They knew that most colleges and universities had abandoned realist-based art education and many of those who already had a bachelor of fine arts also knew that the MFA programs were also focused more on theory and conceptual expression. In 2007 The Texas Academy of

Figurative Art began with a handful of local students who became aware of Cheek’s work and teaching and wanted to study realist drawing and painting techniques. Cheek’s work has been exhibited at the Grace Museum (Abilene, Texas), the Museum of Biblical Art (Dallas, Texas), the Arlington Museum of Art (Arlington, Texas), Texas A&M University, Tarrant County College (Fort Worth), among other venues and commercial galleries. His work is represented by Valley House Gallery in Dallas, Texas. You may see more of his biography on our website: The TAFA studios are located at 415 South Main Street; Fort Worth, Texas. We are just a few blocks south of Downtown Fort Worth. For more information about the school and to download the application form for the summer workshop, please visit our website at

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TESTIMONIALS “TAFA has taught me more about drawing in six months than I had learned in my entire life. If you're serious about improving your drawing ability, this is the best place in Texas to do it." Ethan Zawadsky - TAFA student -Age 18 “TAFA has drastically allowed me to build upon my perception of drawing, which has indicated a clear progression in the realism of my artwork, Thanks a lot" Jose Sauto- TAFA student, Age, 15

Application Process On-line registrations begins Monday, March 31. Visit to download the application. Cost is $850, (materials not included.) The application process will include a portfolio review along with a $250 deposit upon acceptance to hold your space. Twelve students will be selected. For questions, you may call 817.727.2995 or or email

Schedule: Dates: July 7-18 Morning Session - 9:00am - 11:50am Lunch break -12:00 noon - 12:50 pm Afternoon Session - 1:00 - 3:55 pm

Studio Address: 415 S. Main Street Fort Worth, TX 76104

“Too many people think that good drawing is the result of good genes or chance; however, the skills they teach at TAFA debunk this misconception. These skills work, and the proof of this is in the products TAFA students create.” Peter Bloch - High School Art Teacher, Founders Classical Academy

“ I enrolled in TAFA's portrait anatomy class to study classical drawing method, and was able to take the strategies I learned straight back to my own classroom, where I've seen them reflected in my students' work.” Kristy Laurent art teacher with Keller ISD

“The Texas Academy of Figurative Art is the quintessential art school. The students are willing to work within the rigorous curriculum that is essential to developing a viable visual acuity.” (Post Modern Times - the Journal of Aesthetics and Art History -, 2, pg.68)

Richard Davison, jr - Associate head of Department of Visualization Undergraduate Program Coordinator - Texas A&M University, College Station,TX

“Cheek has schooled himself and others in the old-master crafts of drawing, portraiture and the figure. His Texas Academy of Figurative Art, where artists are trained in the rigorous observation and technique of the classical tradition, is perhaps the first such institution in the state, a counterpart to Jacob Collins’s important Grand Central Academy in New York City. - See more at: ron-cheek#sthash.9dyG1svK.dpuf

Frederick Turner - Founders Professor - The University of Texas at Dallas

Copy of Charles Bargue 18th century drawing course by Shelly Hubel, Pencil on paper.

Summer Teen Workshop: July 7-18, 2014 415 S. Main Street Fort Worth, TX 76104 817.727.2995

Tafa Summer Teen Workshop  

Summer Teen Workshop Schedule 2014

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