Thursday, August 26, 2010


Okay so we have a bad news, good news, bad news situation.

Bad News: I spoke with Mr. Hulings' wife, and unfortunately neither of them recall the NIAD course.
Good News: Stuart Ng does in fact have a copy of the course.
Bad News: It has already been sold, and is on layaway.

If anyone out there knows who the buyer is, put them in contact with me, I could get a lot of people to pitch in on the cost in exchange for copies.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Russell Patterson and Others

Here is a screwball trailer for the movie Artists and Models including a veritable who's who of 1930's illustrators. Watch as we get to see Mr. Patterson "work" in a tux from a rotating model, mad skillz I tell ya. Also watch Rube Goldberg banter like a pro with Jack Benny

Harry Leith-Ross: Landscape

Here is a book published prior to the NIAD, but Harry Leith-Ross' lesson may have been on landscapes.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Simon Greco: Perspective

My research has shown me that Michael Aviano covers Perspective in Art in Lesson 3, but here is a book by contributer, Simon Greco, and it is at a lesson length of 48 pages. So far all the books published in the late 60's by contributer have been around this length with the exception of Mr. Gasser's, but his book is 6 x 4 inches. Why do I have the suspicion that if that book were printed 8.5 x 11 it's 160 pages would come out to about 48?

The Art of Perspective Drawing by Simon Greco

Henry Gasser: Painting

Perhaps Henry Gasser's Lesson is on painting techniques?

published in 1964

Some help from Doug Higgins

I got in touch with Doug Higgins, former Reilly student and author of Frank Reilly School of Art. He had this to add to our Search

"Hello Mr. Gist,
Mr. Reilly used to call me into his office for a chat now and then and I remember his telling me about the correspondence course. As I recall, he said someone in the lumber business in, I think, Oregon discovered that there was money to be made in the art correspondence school business and got in touch with Mr. Reilly to put one together, which he did. I also recall that he was a little upset with Clark Hulings who, in a step by step painting, had completely changed the background in the final panel.
Many years later I became friends with Clark Hulings. We both now live in Santa Fe and he showed me his copy of the book. It was very large and very thick. I'm afraid I only spent a few moments with the book and only looked at Clark's section so there's not much more I can tell you about it. Whether it was launched or not I can't say but it did make it to final book form. I also remember that Henry Gasser was one of the artists included. Henry was my boss at the Prudential in Newark and the one who told me about Mr. Reilly's school.
You might try getting in touch with Clark but he's quite old now and in poor health.
I'm very aware of your name and what's going on at the Watts Atelier and applaud your efforts. From what I can tell, the student work is excellent, as is yours of course, and I'm sure Mr. Reilly would be proud.
Doug Higgins"

I am currently trying to get in touch with Mr. Hulings, if anyone out there can help with this it would be greatly appreciated.

Also I found the author and topic of Lessons 6, 14 and 30 (see the lesson list to the right)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Henry Pitz: Line Drawing

Another book by one of the contributers. This appears to have been written before the course, but it would at least give you an idea.

Paul Bransom: Animals

The Smithsonian Archives evidently have a large collection of paper work from Paul Bransom's life. I took a chance that some of that paperwork might be his lesson.

I have now created a PDF from the JPEGs you can download it by clicking on the image below or the list to the right

Cliff Young: Drapery

It occurred to me that since the NIAD was never published that some of the contributers may have turned their lessons into books, and sure enough...

Reilly Correspondence Course Update

I would like to start by saying sadly, as near as I can tell there are only three surviving contributers to the NIAD correspondence course. Clark Hulings, James Bama, and Michael Aviano, if anyone can put me in touch with one of these three gentlemen i would be forever grateful.

In an attempt to gather more info on the NIAD course I contacted Kent Steine, a student of Owen Kampen (a Reilly student). He cleared up quite a bit as well as added some new wrinkles.

In addition to telling me that Russell Patterson's chapter is on cartooning, he had this to say.

"Good afternoon Mr. Gist,

Hope this finds you doing well. I am indeed familiar with Mr. Reilly's correspondence courses.

Along with his "films" it is the most oft asked question about him.

My teacher, Owen Kampen first introduced me to Mr. Reilly and the correspondence course in 1979. Kampen was a student of Mr. Reilly's in the mid 1940's.

The course was titled National Institute of Art and Design. Unfortunately, I have but two of the lesson plans, one by John Gannam. The list of contributors is 29 deep. Many were former students, such as James Bama, Michael Aviano, Clark Hulings and Gerry Allison.

The actual school and courses were officially not offered to the public, but the demise of development did not involve Mr. Reilly's death. The courses were to be published by Northwest Schools, and carry a copyright date of 1964. Mr Reilly passed away Jan 1967.

To the best of my knowledge, all the course books were printed for review by the contributors, and presentation. It is why so few exist. My version, came by way of John Gannam, Jr..

References to the demise of the "National Institute", and Mr. Reilly's passing are likely confused with the opening of the West Coast arm of The Frank Reilly School of Art. With offices and studios already leased, his untimely death ended the expansion, immediately.

The Frank Reilly School of Art continued for a time in NYC, but ultimately could not make it. All of the remaining students transferred to the ASL, along with a couple of the instructors. Namely, Jack Faragasso and Bob Schulz.

Hope this has been of some help to your quest. If you have any further questions or interests, please feel free to contact me anytime. I am also sending a copy of our correspondence to my assistant, Kris. Stay in touch!

With every good wish,
Kent Steine"

Reilly Correspondence Course

As a sort of follow up to yesterdays post, it was brought to my attention that Frank Reilly and some of his students were involved in the creation of a mail correspondence course similar to the Famous Artist's Course.

This info was passed on to me by Glen Orbik, and this is the story as he has heard it.

"The course never actually happened as Reilly died before he could start it up completely.
The chapter I have was from Steve Rude - it's the John Gannam chapter. He stumbled across it when he "cold called" John Gannam Jr. from a phone number he looked up in a mid-west telephone directory . J Gannam Jr - a retired phone co. employee - not an artist himself -
let Steve talk him into coming out to see his upstairs room full of his dad's paintings and that's where Steve got the chapter of the course by Gannam. Frank Reilly's name was only noticed by Steve secondly. Later that same year ( 2006) Stuart Ng mentioned that he had found a copy of the whole course. I believe the story was that it came from an ex-Disney artist who had put more or less a complete version of it together on his own. He may have been one of the instructors listed - I'm not certain. A friend of mine who looked it over said it was very impressive and all there except for the Russell Patterson chapter."

So basically what I would like to know is if anyone out there has seen this course or has any information on it.

A)There was an article and an excerpt from the course in American Artist Vol. 26 from 1962
With limited research into copyrights I have discovered the following:
B)The course was copyright 1963-64 by Northwest Schools Inc.
C) The following is a chapter list
1.Material by Michael Aviano
2.Form in Art by Frank J. Reilly
3.Perspective in Art Michael Aviano
4.Human Form by Frank J. Reilly
7.The Head, Hands, and Feet by James Bama
8.Drapery by Cliff Young
9.Beauty and Character in Art part 1.John Gannam part 2.Douglass Crockwell
10.Animals by Paul Bransom
11.Line Drawing by Henry Pitz
12.Value by Frank J. Reilly
13.Theory of Color by Gordon A. Johnson
14.-23. ?
24. a)History of Illustration by Henry Pitz
b)History of Fine Art by David Robb
25. ?
26. Covers part 1 by Jerry Allison part two by Clark Hulings