Thursday, 11 December 2014

Life drawing

Sketchbook hand
I did this very early in the course to try out what it looked like drawing on newspaper. The proportions are weird and I hadn't yet learned about using tone.

First life drawing class
It was set up so there were some brief poses at the beginning, followed by longer (15 minute) ones.

I was pleased with the line of the arm in this one, but the shape of the head was wrong (although quite pretty!)

The whole thing is flat, as well.

This second one (left) has a bit more solidity to it, partly because I tried shading ,and also the different pressure on the pencil in parts, but the proportions are all wrong.

I decided to try using conte crayon to make myself shade a bit more, and this worked better (right) (although the head and proportion of the right arm...)

For the last and longest pose I used a 4B pencil. It needed a few revisions to get the proportions approximately right, and if I had been doing it at home I would have given up much earlier because it really wasn't going well. But perseverance paid off and here she is, looking not unlike the real thing, with an intent quietness about her that reflects what it felt like to be there.

When the end came, I couldn't believe it had been 2 hours. I had been focussing so much on the drawing that I hadn't felt the time pass.

Second Life Drawing Class
The model turned up in Santa hat, and for the longer poses, beard and boots.
I hadn't done any life sketches since the first class, and it took me a few brief poses to get into the swing of it. During this time I decided that I want to jump forward to this section of the course, to get the most out of these classes.

Two minute poses:
When I got there I first sat at a table with no light, not realising how much I need to be able to see what I am drawing!

There's something about trying to capture what I see in 2 minutes that makes a different part of me take over, which actually proves to be remarkably good at deciding what's important.

Here is a strong relationship between the elbows and shoulders...

Here is the movement of throwing...

Here is the twist of the arm behind the back and thigh...
None of which I could have done easily if I'd consciously known that was what I was trying to do.

Three minute poses:

Charcoal sketch which I think has a certain amount going for it. Apart from the fact that I started in the middle so had no space on the paper for the feet!

This is my embarrassing second try, which has crazy proportions, odd shapes, looks like Santa is wearing snow goggles, and no solidity.

At this point I moved to a lighter place, took a deep breath, and started again.

Five minute poses:
These two 5 minute sketches show how I was trying to use shadow to define the shapes, as well as line,
which was working a lot better than just lines.
I really don't get how to draw faces yet!
I'm pleased with the arms and legs in the top drawing, though, and whatever it is about it that suggests his age - something to do with the shapes of the shadows on his chest?
Ten minute poses:

This conte crayon drawing was done almost entirely with shading, and gives a good idea of how weary this model seemed to be. Again, I didn't plan it properly and the edge of the paper cut off his leg and the top of his hat, but in a way I think that adds to the feeling that he would rather have been leaning against something.

I am surprised, looking at it now, about how sharp the edges of the shadows are, because of the way I was doing it with the edge of the crayon, but that this works to define his shape in the strong light.

I felt I needed to sketch some of the chair in to show how he was sitting.

This was another one where I thought the shadows worked well to show the shape of his back, The leg and arms were badly proportioned from the start, (as usual arms to small) and I need to work on getting this right more often.

But I actually rather like this one for the feeling of presence of the torso.

Naked santa.

This looks more like I think life drawings 'ought' to look, with realistic proportions and lined shading. By this time I had overcome my discomfort at having to draw his dangly bits.

The left arm needed reworking to get it this big, but it's still a bit too small.

One day I will think for long enough before starting, so that the whole body gets on the page!

Fifteen minute poses:

Sleeping naked santa
Again, these two sketches show that I need to work on proportions, especially in the arms, and on drawing faces.

My 1 minute sofa's not bad though.

Ho ho ho.

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