Saturday, December 1, 2012

Skull Study, black and white chalk -- right values, right places

Screw setting up the scanner - decided to snap some digital pics and refine them in Lightroom so I can post artwork for all relevant posts in here. This retroctive on dec. 6th.

Oh man it feels good to be able to write that! Sounds exactly like one of the old master drawings I've been poring over endlessly in Master Class in Figure Drawing (which I finished reading last night - need to draw from it some).

Did a skull study today from the skull replica I have just named Bucky (in reference to the teeth) (oh, and no, I didn't draw them that way - did a little artistic dental work on him). I love the way it looks - 3 important things I handled well thanks to my recent studies - blocked in the basic forms first, then shaded along the major plane breaks, and finally wrapped my chalk strokes around the form. Oh, also used the powerfully form-producing core shadow technique.

I love the way a chalk drawing looks on good toothy paper - it sparkles - little dots of white and black over the various shades of gray.

I thought about old skull studies I've done - all very weak because I wasn't well versed in the classical techniques I described above and didn't understand to keep shadow planes uniformly dark and light planes uniformly light aide from some detail shading that isn't far from the value of the plane itself.

Also thought about old drawings I tried in conte crayon or colored pencils on tinted paper - very weak as well, for similar reasons - though in this case it's also because I hadn't developed a strong sense of how to properly draw form. I just ordered a set of conte crayons and some pastel paper and can hardly wait - and I was right about one thing - the conte crayons are waxier than regular chalk sketch sticks and don't produce much dust.

Now I fully understand why you need to be able to draw like this before you can paint.

Some exercises I'd like to try soon - limited-palette, limited-value sketches on the tablet and with selected colors of various drawing media, like pastel or oil pastel.


Should have used all the guide lines - the nose hold doesn't fall far enough down the face and that resulted inthe teeth being too big. 

The drawings I did yesterday and today both are very nice and very competently drawn, but they feel very pneumatic - closed off and stiff and generic. Need to open up the technique - let some air in, let the inside and outside mingle. Breaks in the lines - lines that describe outer perimiter but also dive inward. The dense solid black background on the skull study really looks heavy - need to leave backgrounds more open and suggest forms there. 

However, each of these drawings is also a first attempt at a technique/material I'm unfamiliar with (aside from some poor attempts long ago). I think as I go I'll develop more confidence and skall and be able to put more expressive qualities into the drawings. I also think as I do more bone studies for instance I'll become increasingly familiar with the basic forms and start being able to draw the subtler details much better. This is an amazing way to gradually develop your knowledge of anatomical forms as well as your drawing techniques. 

No comments:

Post a Comment