Starting Your Journey

Cody Gramstad
9 Lessons (7h 57m)
9 Week(s)
English French Portuguese

Two Ways to Learn


most popular

  1. Watch Video Lessons at Your Own Pace
  2. Assignments Included
  3. Peer Feedback
  4. Switch Courses as Often as You Like
  5. Access to Schoolism Webinar Archives

LIVE Classes

personalized instructor feedback

  1. Watch Video Lessons with a Planned Curriculum
  2. Scheduled Assignments with Deadlines
  3. Personalized Paint-Overs and Real-Time Feedback From The Instructors
  4. Watch Video Lessons and Peer Feedback as Often as You'd Like
  5. Ability to Contact Instructor with Questions
  6. Digital Certificate of Completion
  7. Weekly Class Meetings LIVE on Zoom
  8. Access to Schoolism Webinar Archives

Course Description

Starting your journey is like a high-intensity boot camp for aspiring artists, but it doesn't have to be as daunting as it sounds. If you've struggled with your artistic journey, have difficulty improving your art, or just aren't sure where to begin, this is the course for you! We will start at the very beginning and break down all of the fundamental skills you will need in order to have a successful career in the arts. Each week of this class will cover a different topic, including discussing lines and shapes, combining color and lighting, enhancing your visual story, and polishing up your image. Each lesson comes together and builds upon itself so that, by the end of the course, you will have a fully completed painting. I hope you'll join me as we embark on this artistic journey together!

  • Adobe Photoshop

Lesson Plan

In our first week we will prepare you for the class and start by taking a closer look at the things that inspire us. Through those bits of inspiration we will discover how everything that you were reacting to is actually a product of well executed fundamental skills.

In our second week we will discuss line and shape. We will break down the fundamentals of these artistic tools and show how you can use these tools to simplify complex imagery as well as evoke an emotion in your audience.

In week three we will break down perspective in order to give your two dimensional shapes a three dimensional form. We will discuss the different perspective options and how they alter the audience's visual understanding of your scene.

In week four we will start combining together the first three weeks in order to create our own visual compositions. We will discuss how to control the audience's eye as well as how to create visual associations that help reinforce a story and emotion. This week you will also start your own personal project that you will complete by the end of the class.

In week five we will discuss how value and light are inherently connected. We will break down the fundamentals of both and how you can use these tools to create visual form and strengthen your compositions.

In week six we will discuss color theory and how colors can enhance your visual story. I will show you how I select and control my colors to focus the audience's attention and reinforce my intended narrative.

In week seven we will break down materials. We will do this by discussing how you can combine surface textures, reflectivity and transparency in order to create different materials and in doing so you will make your paintings feel like a tangible location that the audience can reach out and touch.

In week eight we will combine colors and lighting in order to tell a visual story. I will show you how changing the time of day or lightsource will dramatically impact your image and how you can control it to make the correct decision for your story.

In our final week we will pull everything together. I will discuss style and show you how to take an image to completion through polish. We will end by discussing your next steps that you can take to become the artist you want to be.


Cody Gramstad

Cody Gramstad is a digital painter with a traditional illustration background who has lived and breathed art from a very young age. He grew up watching his parents, who were both artists, making a living from their craft. Cody has had a very diverse and exciting career: working on Oscar-nominated The Dam Keeper with filmmakers Dice Tsutsumi and Robert Kondo, as a concept artist at Industrial Light and Magic, and, currently, as an art director at VR studio Baobab.