Tag Archives: Ronald J. Llanos

Public Programs Instructor Inspired by Ashcan School and Looney Tunes

Ronald J. Llanos. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Ronald J. Llanos. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Born in Los Angeles, Art Center alumnus Ronald J. Llanos ILLU ’03 has taught in Art Center’s Public Programs—Art Center for Kids, Saturday High and Art Center at Night—for the past 10 years.

Llanos’ work depicts everyday moments of life in L.A., whether it’s street vendors selling their wares in downtown’s Toy District or an homage to Manet’s Bar at the Folies Bergères via Hot Dog on a Stick. “I was inspired by artists who captured their urban surroundings like George Bellows and John French Sloan,” says Llanos, who’s teaching Illustration for Art Center for Kids’ Summer 2013 term.

And while he cites as influences those two artists and others from the Ashcan School—a group of early 20th-century painters in New York and Philadelphia that depicted the raw vibrancy of city life—Llanos says his urban illustrations also owe a debt to Bugs Bunny. “I was also inspired by the background art from Looney Tunes cartoons from the ‘40s and ’50s, specifically the work of Maurice Noble.”

Sunday, his work featured on the most current Art Center for Kids catalog, is part of Llanos’ ongoing “Brown World” series, which refers both to his choice of paper stock as well as the Latino community he chronicles. “I lived in Huntington Park for the first three years of my life, which I can still vividly recall,” says Llanos. “It all left an impression on me.”

Llanos' "Sunday," 2003. Courtesy: Nick Jeong.

Llanos’ “Sunday,” 2003. Courtesy: Nick Jeong.

Llanos’ has shown at venues like Wax Poetic, Cactus Gallery and Ghettogloss. And last year, Metro unveiled his most ambitious project to date: Ephemeral Views: A Visual Essay. The public work—24 large-scale mosaic panels that depict L.A. street life—is seen daily by thousands of commuters passing through the Expo Line’s Expo/Western station.

Summer 2013 term Art Center for Kids classes begin June 23 and registration begins May 20.

Art Center for Kids motivates students (grades 4–8) to discover their inspiration and express themselves in new ways. Through a variety of unique art and design classes—ranging from Animal Sculpture to Inventors’ Workshop—the program teaches critical thinking, innovation and visual literacy to help children reach their creative potential.

Art Center College of Design’s Public Programs offer a wide range of art and design courses for individuals at every stage of their educational, professional or personal development. By providing non-degree students access to exceptional instruction and facilities, the College’s Public Programs promote critical thinking and problem solving, and teach effective techniques for fostering intellectual, societal and professional development.

Adding value to the world: Art Center at Night student Julienne Johnson

Artist Julienne Johnson in her North Hollywood studio. Photo courtesy of the artist.

“Her work impressed me with its own combination of raw confidence and formal strategy,” said art critic Peter Frank of artist Julienne Johnson. “She knows how to put together a painting, even as she puts herself right in the middle of its fabrication.”

Frank edited Johnson’s first art book Ashes for Beauty, which documents the artist’s collection of the same name, which was the subject of two solo exhibitions at Santa Monica’s TAG Gallery in 2010 and 2011.

Johnson has taken several courses at Art Center at Night over the past few years and she credits the College’s continuing studies program with dramatically changing her work as well as her approach.

“I learned that the making of art is of great value to the world,” said Johnson. “I already knew how immensely important it was to me, but it was through Art Center that I felt empowered to proclaim it boldly.”

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Metro Expo Line Opens This Weekend, Alumnus Ronald J. Llanos’ Work Featured at Expo/Western Station

An illustration by alumnus Ronald J. Llanos; his work has been installed at the Expo/Western station.

The much-anticipated Metro Expo Line opens this weekend and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority is celebrating by throwing a party. From 5:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 28 and Sunday, April 29, everybody can ride the new light rail line connecting the Westside to Downtown L.A. for free.

And while Metro is touting that it will only take 30 minutes to travel between Culver City and Downtown, they’re encouraging everybody to make multiple stops this Saturday to partake in a number of celebrations–Latino jazz band Double Gee Ninenet at the 7th St./Metro Center Station are one of many offerings–from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m..

Alumnus Ronald J. Llanos.

And on both days, riders should be sure to disembark frequently as each station features new commissioned permanent work by a different local artist, including Tom LaDuke, Samuel Rodriguez and Jessica McCoy. Near and dear to our hearts at Art Center is the Expo/Western Station, which features Ephemeral Views: A Visual Essay by Fine Art alumnus and Art Center at Night and Saturday High instructor Ronald J. Llanos.

More than four years in the works, Ephemeral Views consists of 24 mosaic panels, each one 8′ x 3′, that feature Llanos’ trademark translucent watercolor impressions of the vibrant characters that make up the everyday street life of the greater Los Angeles area. For some behind-the-scenes snippets of what to expect to see at Expo/Western, check out Llanos’ blog here and here.

“You might call me a ‘visual journalist’ or an ‘urban realist.’ My images are inspired by people, and by places I travel to or frequent,” reads Llanos artist’s statement on the Expo Line website. “I feel that if I search within myself for that which I find interesting about the places and people of those areas, I might be able to communicate with people across time.”

For more on this weekend’s Expo Line grand opening festivities, visit Metro’s website.

Illustrations by Ronald J. Llanos; his work captures the vibrant street life of the L.A. region.

Alumnus Creating New Work for Metro Station

Fine Art alumnus and Art Center at Night/Saturday High faculty member Ronald J. Llanos has been hard at work the past three years creating Ephemeral Views: A Visual Essay, for Metro’s Expo/Western Station constructed at Western Avenue in Los Angeles. He is creating 24 mosaic panels (each 8’ x 3’) that comprise the work under construction.

The Source brings us an update on the progress. From the article: “Ronald’s watercolor paintings have a fresh, spontaneous quality to them. The task of translating his translucent washes of color into a hard, permanent material was a challenge. Artisans at Mosaika Art & Design traced Ronald’s designs onto ceramic tile and added thin layers of glaze to preserve the feel of the artist’s hand in the work. Next the work was fired, cut into small pieces and placed within the panels.”

Read more, and also check out Llanos’ blog for details from the beautiful mosaic.

Meet Ronald J. Llanos

Metro’s Exposition Line connecting downtown to Culver City (and eventually Santa Monica) may not be up and running yet, but when it is, it’ll be impossible to miss the work of Illustration alum and Art Center at Night instructor Ronald J. Llanos.

Metro has commissioned the Art Center alum and Art Center at Night instructor to create Ephemeral Views: A Visual Essay for its light rail station being constructed at Western Avenue, and the 24 mosaic panels (each one standing 8’ x 3’) that comprise the work are being created right now.

Much of Llanos work captures the everyday moments of life in the greater Los Angeles area—whether it’s a visual documentation of downtown’s Toy District or an homage to Manet at Hot Dog on a Stick—so it’s not surprising that his Expo Line work inspired by the vibrant characters that make up the city’s street life.

Llanos work has been shown at Wax Poetic, Black Maria Gallery and Ghettogloss and he was the featured artist in Draw the Line, a recent group show at Cactus Gallery in Eagle Rock. We caught up with him to ask him about his favorite artists and teaching at Art Center at Night.

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Stopping by Art Center at Night’s Open House

Art Center at Night, the College’s continuing studies program, held their biggest event of the year last week—Open House.

“Open House is the perfect opportunity for people to become acquainted with educational opportunities offered by ACN’s nearly 200 innovative courses in art and design,” says Public Programs Managing Director and ACN Director Dana L. Walker.

Held at South Campus, several hundred attended the annual summer event, which gave participants the opportunity to sit in on classes, view student work and speak with faculty members. Among the various classes open to the public were Motion Design 1; Still Life Drawing; Letterpress Printing; Shoes: Fact and Fantasy; and Unplugged: DIY Graphic Design and TEXTure. Class demonstrations, including an Artist Trading Card workshop, were also open to Open House attendees. A prize drawing awarded ACN goodies and the grand prize—a free ACN class—was won by both John Reager of Irvine and Marsekal Tirtadji of Santa Monica.

A wide variety of people attended the event, including current, prospective and past students, parents, ACN faculty and community members. Holly Hofgaarden attended Open House to learn more about ACN and the classes offered. “I want to eventually attend Art Center’s degree program in Graphic Design,” she explained. “I came by Open House to learn more about the ACN courses that they offer in that subject. I want to build my portfolio, and think that I can do this through ACN classes.”

“Open House gives potential students the chance to have a conversation with their potential instructor, which is really nice,” says ACN instructor and Art Center alumnus Ronald J. Llanos. “Also important is the fact that they can see the physical work that comes out of the classes, especially in classes like mine, Composition and Painting and Introduction to Figure Drawing. I think it helps potential students get the vibe of the class they’re considering, and what to expect.”

Tony Luna has been an Art Center instructor since 1985, teaching in both the degree and Public Programs. Luna teaches three popular ACN classes: Crafting a Meaningful Career: Parts One, Two and Three. The courses aim to help creatives rediscover their passion, examine the interconnection of their personal and work histories, and analyze their creative strengths and weaknesses.

“There is nothing like having the opportunity to sharing your enthusiasm for ACN classes face-to-face with prospective students,” says Luna. “In these uncertain economic times, it is refreshing to offer classes which help the students to rediscover their potential get back to what is important to them in their careers. Open House provides that interface and gives hope to those who want to do more with their lives and livelihoods.”

It’s not too late to sign up for the Fall 2010 term of ACN. Classes begin September 13—find out more about ACN, and register for Fall classes today.