November 11, 2015

helpful hint | drawing f'15

To show depth, remember a basic rule of perspective: What is closest to you appears larger. So, in figure drawing, begin your drawing from the body part closest to you. If it is a leg, or a foot, start from the bottom of the paper. Do not start from the top! If you do, what will likely ensue is a massive head - more caricature than reality. 



November 01, 2015

gestures | drawing f'15

Drawing is not following a line on the model, it is drawing your sense of the thing.    - Robert Henri, American painter and teacher, from The Art Spirit (1923)



October 18, 2015

Grand Central Terminal | drawing f'15

Sketching in this resplendent NYC landmark - glorious in scale, faithful to its classical roots, and abuzz with a daily rush of 750,000 visitors and commuters - is in one word: intimidating. 

With the natural tendency to zero in on the simplest thing - such as windows on the opposite wall - a lesson on perspective circumvents any interpretation of the world as flat. The concourse alone is 275 ft. long, 120 ft. wide, and 125 ft. high. 

Most importantly, one's own eye level (commonly referred to as the horizon line) is drawn first. Too often omitted, this line serves as a reminder that orthogonal lines need to meet at a vanishing point - on that line - in one and two-point perspective. Note the following examples:

In Henrietta's drawing look closely and you can see the vanishing point
(between two windows) on her horizon line.

Michelle draws in the lines of perspective, 
before emphasizing her focus, with values.

To include its majestic ceiling, Cristina expands her sketch of Grand Central,
while also keeping her focus.

October 12, 2015

values in a pencil drawing | drawing f'15

When setting up the composition, start lightly, using both the tip and the side of the pencil. Then go back, and darken where needed. Constantly comparing values maintains the unity of the drawing. The following examples show some steps in the process. 

The beginning of Michelle's drawing, shows her gentle touch,
with some
 dramatic perspective.

Sana is able to keep the background shoe
in the background, by only darkening the reclining shoe.
The values on the rope still need to be developed,
and the front of the shoe could be wider.

Beatriz is able to get the texture of the black velvet shoe,
 by changing over to a 6B pencil. 

Beatriz will finish by giving the egg more dimension, 
and bringing less attention to the outline 
of the jumprope's handle. 

October 01, 2015

the second class | life drawing f'15

There is often a disconnect between the student and the paper, when charcoal is introduced as a drawing tool. While ideal for its range of marks, uniform lines, all rendered with a tense grip, scream too much control. Enter gesture drawing, with its brand of rapid-fire marks. When no longer confined by the intellect, charcoal caresses the surface of the flesh, with lines that bend, flow, and pulsate. Forget about perfection. A far more engaging objective: Make a sexy line. 



September 20, 2015

the first day's gestures | life drawing f'15

A life drawing class can segue into any form of personal expression. Free your grip on the charcoal, play around with marks on the paper, and you open an array of possibilities. Stay in control, overthink, and you kill creativity.

August 31, 2015

start of the semester quote

"It is often said that Leonardo (da Vinci) drew so well because he knew about things; it is truer to say that he knew about things because he drew so well." 
- Kenneth Clark, art historian, 1903-1983
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