|Frank Reilly, 2nd floor classroom at the Art Students League of NY, circa 1950|
When I arrived at the Art Students League in the late seventies, Mr. Reilly had been dead for ten years. I entered the class of Robert Schulz, a prominent illustrator and a former student of Reilly's (during the 1950's). Following Reilly's death in 1967, Mr. Schulz faithfully continued teaching the drawing and painting program designed and developed by Reilly relying on Reilly's extensive body of lecture notes. Seventy folders containing over a thousand pages in Reilly's own hand. Upon entering the class I was told by fellow students to consider myself a "Reilly student" and to refer to the class as the "Reilly class". Schulz passed away the next year, and I continued studying with Jack Faragasso, and Michael Aviano, both Reilly alumni.
Shortly after finishing my studies at the League, I became friendly with another alumnus of Reilly's, Jerry Allison. Jerry was an illustrator, and had been Reilly's monitor at the League in the 1950's. He had been described to me as one of Reilly's best proteges. I was just beginning my career as an illustrator, and Jerry became a mentor.
Upon Reilly's death and the close of the Frank J. Reilly School of Art in 1967, Allison had arranged the transition of Reilly's several hundred students back to the Art Student's League, the closing of the school and the subsequent preservation of Reilly's teaching materials. He has provided stewardship over these materials for these past forty some years, and has now charged me with this responsibility.
With this blog I hope to publish some of Reilly's notes and describe his fundamental teaching methods and principles. Jerry Allison has been a big help in advising and supporting this effort.
Unless otherwise noted, handwritten notes and drawings on this blog are Reilly's own.