Study with me

Teaching is my side-gig. I’ve helped train and launch hundreds of successful creative pros, and worked with students who are pursuing their creative passions, helping them to improve. 

My courses are designed to help creatives — whether student, hobbyists, or practicing pros — get better at business, sharpen their creative skills and build their design knowledge.

I teach the fundamentals and principles of design, color, drawing, design history and critical practice. I share my structural approach to building effective design and imagery from the ground up. I encourage research and innovation. And I emphasize craftsmanship, which boosts the value of your work.

Evening Programs

Art Center College of Design

Intro To 3D Design

An introduction to aesthetic theory, this course includes discussion and exercises in design elements, organizing principles and perceptual skills as they pertain to real space. Creative awareness, problem-solving, process, and technical ability are stressed. Principles taught are the basis for all 3D design fields. Assignments are oriented toward understanding and applying design principles.

Crafting Your Creative Brand

Designed to help independent designers, creatives and artists develop or revitalize their own distinct, marketable brands in order to make an impact and build a long-term creative career. Students explore their aspirational goals, core values and distinct approaches as the basis for designing their visual brand identity. They focus on crafting and presenting a consistent visual message that will be relevant to clients, collectors, fans and patrons. Approaches to marketing, content creation, curation and establishing one’s authorship will be explored. Students will develop their brand strategies which they can implement immediately.

Extension

Otis College of Art and Design

Crafting Your Professional Portfolio

Presenting a cohesive and flexible body of work is necessary for entering the professional creative fields. Whether your intent is to find a job or create an independent business, your portfolio is vital to your success. This course guides you in developing a flexible, professionally-presented and targeted portfolio showcasing your unique approach and point of view. You will select and refine your work and develop printed and digital portfolios. You’ll explore approaches to marketing and promoting your book to ideal clients and employers, and create or update your website and online portfolios and directories. Marketing pieces include a business card, printed and email promotions, and resumé/CV. Upon completion of the course, you’ll have what you need to promote your work to employers and prospective clients.

Color for Digital Design

Just when you thought you knew all about color… there’s more to know. Designers and artists who use computers and tablets to create their art or for digital production need to know more than the color wheel and color mixing. I created this digital color course to address everything from file types to rendering intents to digital printing. 

Landscape Painting

Learn to use the materials, techniques, and best practices for painting outdoors. Using California’s natural daylight, this course addresses how light, color and contrast are affected by time of day, weather conditions and seasons. Students further their understanding of color, composition, form and space while painting landscapes directly from life. Gear setup is also discussed. Open to all painting media. 

Portrait Painting in Watercolor and Gouache

Students explore fundamentals of portrait painting using watercolor and gouache as primary media. A review of structure, proportion and anatomy of the head and hands sets the stage for application of color to communicate form. Watercolor and gouache techniques will be explored, including palette set up, color mixing, surface preparation, layering, blending, wet into wet, and dry-brush. Students learn the principles of light logic and facial color zones, how to mix “flesh tones for all skin types, and principles of composition. Students complete a series of exercises and three finished portraits using photographic reference.

Architecture + Interior Design Certificate and Masters Programs

UCLA Extension

Elements of Design 1

An introduction to design fundamentals, including exercises in figure-ground relationships, color interaction, line, texture, shape, scale, balance, rhythm, emphasis, and organization of elements
in the 2D plane, this course develops perceptual skills, sensitivity, creative awareness, and the technical ability necessary to handle a variety of design media. 

Elements of Design 2

Lectures, demonstrations, and exercises dealing with the understanding of design fundamentals, this course examines abstract structuring in 2D and 3D design, use of construction materials, and fundamentals of modular systems and their modifications and variations.

Color Theory

Covers the perception of color, its permutations, and its dimensions, using traditional as well as contemporary methods, emphasizing individual experimentation through lab exercises and demonstrations. Topics include the color wheel, digital color, Munsell and Albers theories, perception, symbolism, and psychology, pattern-painting techniques, and the applications of color theories to art, architecture, and interior design. Student projects and lectures combine intense exploration of theories with hands-on experience in a variety of media.

History of Graphic Design

Gain a broad understanding of design and its dynamic past to discover inspiration for the present. Survey the history of visual communication, design’s sociopolitical and cultural contexts, and the artistic and technological characteristics of various movements. Concepts of inspiration, curation and creation, authorship and experience are addressed. Students create portfolio pieces inspired by the designers and movements studied.

Drawing For Communication

Develop drawing skills for successful communication in design and illustration. Topics include thumbnails, quick sketches, drawing from reference, compositing, drawing from memory, rendering techniques, and media options. Includes principles of linear perspective, value, proportion and structure. Exercises cover drawing from observation and photographic reference.

Create Your Independence. Value Your Work. Attract Great Clients.

Coming in 2019

Eye Level Studio Series

Drawing and Design Shorts

The very basics for beginners answering the fundamental questions:

  • How do I hold a pencil for drawing?
  • What pencil should I use?
  • How to cut papers and boards
  • Graphite transfer process
  • Gear and tools

Drawing and Design Instruction

Beginning to advanced paid instruction online:

  • Color theory   
  • Design Fundamentals
  • Perspective Drawing
  • Figure Drawing
  • Portrait Drawing and Painting
  • Critique and Critical Practiceonline 

You taught me character. You taught me skills. You taught me how to think. A lot of what you taught me is how to see.

John Beck
Student, ArtCenter Extension

Alvalyn Lundgren

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My latest posts, tutorials, instruction, challenges and community to help you create great work.

  • Design principles and how to use them effectively
  • How to understand and use color for digital and traditional media
  • Drawing, Illustration and Painting How-Tos
  • Critical practice
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