Saturday, November 23, 2013

Catching up

I said I was still going to post finished work her when I get it done, but I forgot to post this one:


And just about a half hour ago I put the final touches on Ronda --

Charcoal magic

A refreshing break from all the unadventurous photorealism and photocopying that you usually see on YT videos of artists today. His work is vigorous and exciting, revealing in the formal elements of art in a way reminiscent of Cubism and other Modernist methods. There was a sense then of getting something besides just the pure physical form of a thing, something other than pure materialism.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

They play well together

I realize now that it isn't a matter of choosing either constructive or direct drawing techniques, but of learning both. It's a false dichotomy - each one really complements the other and to reach the highest levels of drawing competency you need both sets of skills. The meticulous observation and the quick gesture are both necessary components. Interesting, because at different times I've been a proponent of each, and thought of them as opposing forces that can never merge. But to become a complete artist they must merge.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Ahh -- Conceptual Figure Drawing... so THAT'S what it's called!!

Recently I wrote about the 2 different approaches that I know of to classical  figure drawing -- the Atelier method which involves directly copying shapes precisely (I'm not sure Atelier is actually the right term anymore) and the one favored by Glen Vilppu, Hogarth, and the like, which involves analyzing the pose, drawing it in terms of gesture and then basic forms and casting light on it from an imaginary source. Well, I've learned the name for it -- guess you already saw it in the title. But for those who don't remember and are too lazy to look back up, it's Conceptual figure drawing.

Here's a video from where the god of figure drawing Glen Vilppu demonstrates some excellent techniques:

Seeing this was the inspiration for my above sketch. Conte pencil on newsprint, and in the 2nd state rubbed with a finger and heightened with white.

** Ok, apparently the name of the method where you copy exactly what you see shape for shape and tone for tone is Direct drawing. Makes sense. I think some ateliers teach the Direct method, some teach the Consceptual, and some might teach both.

*** New info added 11-5 ----

Just learned a couple more terms for these two different approaches. Direct observational drawing (and painting) is also called the Academic or Illustrative approach, and Constructive figure drawing can also be called Conceptual or Analytical, since the artist is analyzing the model and then re-conceptualizing it.