Tonal Portrait Drawing

Born in New York, Dale’s earliest memories of painting and drawing were from his Grandfather’s own work, which hung throughout the home. Fascinated by the world around him, and the ability to capture fleeting moments on paper, he began to draw and paint from nature almost exclusively.
From 1993-97, he attended the School of Visual Arts in New York City where he studied the Reilly method with both Marvin Mattelson and John F. Murray. Inspired by the techniques, and hungry for more information, he began copying from the old masters at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

When Murray moved his studio to Tucson, Arizona, Dale followed and focused his studies on the palettes, methods, and materials of artists such as Velazquez and Rembrandt.

In 2012, Dale attended the Florence Academy of Art in Italy, where he pushed his understanding of traditional techniques and materials even further while drawing and painting master copies in museums and painting landscapes in the countryside.

In 2013, Dale returned to New York City, where he is currently immersed in the full-time program at Grand Central Atelier studying under Jacob Collins, Ted Minoff, Will St. John and Colleen Barry. He lives in Long Island with his wife, contemporary artist Karine Falleni, son, and hound dog, Moose.

9:30 A.M.-4:30 P.M.
Live Model
All Levels Welcome
Gage Capitol Hill
  • Canvas – Claessens 13DP, or Centurian Oil Primed Linen ( 16×20 is usually a good size for portraits )
  • Paper – Strathmore Series 400 or Fabriano Artistico 140lb Hot Press ( White )
  • These are colors and brands that are on my palette quite often, please do not feel pressured to buy all of them (or the specific brand listed ):
    • Cremnitz White or Titanium White
    • Brilliant Yellow Light (Old Holland)
    • Yellow Ochre or Raw Sienna
    • Raw Umber
    • Venetian Red
    • Red Umber (Old Holland)
    • Alizarin Crimson
    • Van Dyke Brown
    • Ivory Black
    • Green Umber (Old Holland)
    • Kings Blue Light ( Old Holland or M. Harding )
  • Assortment of Sable or Synthetic Brushes. Rounds, Filberts or Long Flats preferred. Sizes 0, 2, 4, 6 should be sufficient. Brands I prefer: Rosemary and Co.Silver – Bristlon
  • Odorless mineral spirits (and a sealed container to hold them)
  • Cold pressed linseed oil
  • Palette ( Non absorbent ) Sealed wood or glass preferred
  • Palette Knife
  • Lint free cloth (old t-shirts work best)
  • Mirror, Black mirror or iPhone
  • Vine charcoal (generals soft charcoal pencil is ok)
  • Kneaded eraser
  • Spray fixative
  • Paper Towels (Home Depot, Blue Shop Towels are great!!!)

Please email me with any questions or concerns. I have found that the above mentioned materials are quality items, at reasonable prices, and they allow the artist to focus on making great work, rather than “fighting” with the medium.

If there is something that you prefer to use, please feel free to bring it to the workshop, I always love finding out about, and trying new materials.

In this 5 day, intensive workshop, students will work from the live model, over an extended pose and will discover a clear and straightforward way to approach drawing the portrait tonally, with an emphasis on accurate drawing and observation.

Participants will spend the first half of the week drawing the portrait by using a reductive method, toning the paper with charcoal or graphite powder, then achieving value by either rubbing out for the lights, and adding charcoal/graphite for darker values. In the second half of the workshop, students will work on the paper they toned at the beginning of the week, and utilizing various dry mediums such as colored pencils, graphite, and charcoal, work to achieve a finished portrait drawing.

Students will also learn how to capture the likeness of the model, and simulate the effects of light washing over the forms presented before them. Through constant demonstrations, and individual critiques, all information covered in this workshop will be thoroughly explained so that each person will meet their individual goals. All levels are welcome.

There will be a model change halfway through the workshop, allowing participants to have two finished portraits by the week’s end.