Monday, January 31, 2011

Life Drawing Workshop: Gesture Drawing - Part 2

Gesture drawing is challenging because you have to observe and distill information quickly.

For life drawing beginners, the tendency is to draw memorized symbols for the respective body parts instead of drawing what is actually observed. The challenge is to unlearn the symbols and replace them with observation. A good set of observational tools will allow an artist to understand what they see. If you understand something, you can draw it.

To practice those observational skills, to practice seeing, we do gesture drawings. Lots of them. Here is a pile of drawing of life model and artist, Jono.

"To draw from life, one must learn to see. Seeing is drawing. Drawing is understanding"

Learn to see the basic shapes that build complex shapes. Learn to see values, an objects relative lightness or darkness. Learn to estimate angles. Learn to see negative space. Learn to estimate proportions. Learn to see things that visually rhyme. Learn to see patterns. Look for them.

To improve your drawing chops, carry a sketchbook and practice your observational skills by drawing the world around you.

2 minute gesture drawing of life model and artist, Jono.
General's wide graphite stick on Strathmore 50lb sketch paper. 18 x 24 inches, by Graham Smith.

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