Sunday, 23 September 2012

Try and Try Again

Sustained Study in Crayon 2 - Modelled Drawing
17 September 2012
Conté Crayon on Paper
46cm x 18cm (18" x 7")

The first sustained study in crayon (see Sustained Study in Crayon) lulled me into a false sense of security. I thought I had made a break through and the rest of the Natural Way to Draw was going to be easy - Silly rabbit.

The second sustained study in crayon started badly. I couldn’t get the relative measurements right in the extended gesture study. Elaine ended up with a pinhead and a strange elongated body.

At the start of the contour study, I made some adjustments, but by the end, the proportions were even worse.

I had to start the modelled study, by making more adjustments. I couldn’t get Elaine’s proportions right, but eventually got them close enough to make the modelling exercise worthwhile. There are still some major inconsistencies, but I quite like the result. It has a quirky charm.

The challenge of drawing this relatively simple pose has forced me to think about techniques for checking the body is in proportion and the various parts are correctly aligned. The Natural Way to Draw describes one system and Classic Human Anatomy by Valerie L. Winslow describes a number of others methods. One thing most of them have in common is they use a body part (normally the head) as a unit of measure.

These techniques are useful when drawing figures from memory or imagination such as in the Daily Composition or The Long Composition. They are also helpful as a reference when drawing from life. You know which parts of the body should be about the same size and you can check their actual sizes using the classic pencil in outstretched arm pose.

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