It’s Thursday morning, so that means figure drawing. This is the last for the year, we won’t be having any sessions during the holidays, and the first week of January, I’ll be in Boston. There will still be art posted. Just not figure drawing.
We tried something new this week, a 5 minute pose, where the model picks a pose, and every 5 seconds, changes the pose slightly, by moving an arm or a leg, so there is something similar from pose to pose. It’s an interesting exercise, and I recommend trying it. However, I’m not posting anything from that, while interesting to do, it’s not as interesting to look at.
I started going to the drawing group back in April of 2009. Back then it was every two weeks, and eventually it went up to once a week. While you should try and draw every day, even once a week figure drawing makes a noticeable difference. As seen as below.
The knee and leg on the left side are so over worked. What is there is what I saw, but my execution of it wasn’t correct. The proportions are good in both, but I know, it was a lot more work to get them in on the left. There was a lot more sketch in, take out, adjust. I have my own list of things to focus on and to learn, such as facial features/expressions, hands and feet. How lighting works on the body. I’ve definitely seen an improvement in those areas. When learning to draw the figure, it’s a natural reaction to try and avoid drawing hands and feet, but if you do, how are you ever going to draw them correctly? The solution, draw the figure big enough so that feet don’t fit on the page! Uh, no. Learn to fit the figure on the page.
Between then and now, I’ve changed the way I hold my pencil.
The suggestion came from my friend Marc, who is an amazing artist. It’s something I’ve read in books and knew was a better way to hold your drawing tool. I just never really done it. The way you normally hold a pencil is a very natural way to hold it. But holding it the other way, quickly becomes as natural. It also gives you a wider range of movement, and the ability to make bold lines, fine lines, shading just about any mark you need to make.
During the break, I talked with the other group organizer, Kristen. The subject was, when do you stop having to measure out like you learned in school, when does it become automatic. I doubt it ever does. Oh you probably get really good and make less mistakes along the way. There are always adjustments. I passed on the advice from Marc to Kristen, about how to hold your pencil. Because it really does make a difference in what you can do. I can’t remember if I was ever told this when I was in art school.
And getting used to holding your pencil like this doesn’t take much time at all.