Patrick O'Brien invited live snakes, iguanas, and hissing cockroaches into his classroom at MICA (Maryland Institute College of Art).
His digital students sketched them from life, gathering inspiration for an assignment to create a poster for the reptile house at the zoo.
The animals came from The Drawing Zoo, a company in the Baltimore area that specializes in bringing exotic animals into schools for drawing. The animals move, but not too much, and they don't mind the attention. They're experienced with people and completely non-aggressive.
The team from the Drawing Zoo has experience in both art and animal handling, and their subjects are well cared for. They say that "snakes, spiders, lizards, frogs etc. make great models because they are easy to transport, handle and care for, both inside and outside of the classroom."
All the photos are by Patrick O'Brien