"Drawing for Movement": an opportunity to explore drawing in new ways

"Drawing for Movement": an opportunity to explore drawing in new ways

GOBELINS' is launching a new online course in gesture drawing!

Starting on 1 February 2021, this weekly evening course will aim at capturing the essence of movement for character design, storyboarding, animation, design and illustration.

As the applications for the course just opened, we took the opportunity to ask 5 questions to the guest speaker of the course, Niall LAVERTY


Could you please introduce yourself? 

Hi GOBELINS! I'm an illustrator and gesture drawing teacher. I studied animation in Dublin in the early 1990s and had an opportunity to work for Don Bluth both in Ireland and then in the USA at Fox Studios on Anastasia (1997) and Titan A.E. (2000).

Later I became a freelance animator working in Germany and back again in Ireland. Recently I have moved more into illustration and writing with At it Again! We celebrate Irish literature with our illustrated pocket guide books, cards, prints and notebooks. 

What led you to create the course Drawing for Movement?

While living in Germany, I had an opportunity to teach gesture drawing at the IFS International Film School in Cologne. Since then I've been a regular guest teacher at Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg, The Animation Workshop in Viborg and Gobelins in both Paris and Annecy. I'm also a part-time lecturer in the animation department at the National Film School (IADT) in Dún Laoghaire and have taught in-house classes at various animation studios in Dublin.

I've always had a passion for life drawing / croquis from my time at college onwards and teaching has given me an opportunity to share my passion. I decided to specialise in teaching gesture drawing as it is all about creating the first sparks of a drawing - the spirit of the pose! Coming from an animation background, movement is a key ingredient in telling a story and the Drawing for Movement course is about capturing that sense of animation in a single drawing.

What are the key pillars of your teaching method?

The key feature of my teaching method is looking at capturing the essence of the pose through the use of graphic principles (lines of movement, rhythm and exaggeration, shapes) and the flexibility of the pose to create dynamic drawings for animation, illustration, fashion, comics and graphic storytelling. It’s all about having fun while learning together to see where else we can go with our drawing! 


What were the challenges of adapting this live movement course to online constraints?

Teaching online during Covid-19 has presented many challenges. Life drawing / croquis is most effective when it takes place in a shared physical space, where all participants can be inspired by having a model in front of them and by each other's work.

Thankfully we are living in a time where technology allows us to continue our work with online platforms for teaching. It's exciting to think outside the box to keep your teaching practice stimulating in these times and how to adapt new ideas back into the classroom. 


Why should one follow this course and how will it benefit the artistic careers of your students?

The new Drawing for Movement online classes will be an opportunity for both beginners and experienced artists to explore drawing in new ways. The classes are suitable for both students and professionals

The course will give you fresh ideas and approaches to drawing that can be applied to animation, illustration, fashion, comics and graphic storytelling.

It will be a mix of lectures, demos and critiques and with participants from all over the world to inspire you.

Interested in joining this course? More information and how to apply here: 

Drawing for Movement



Published on 8 January 2021

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