Feedback and guidance request

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by Dansvidania 8 years ago.

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  • #242

    Hello everyone,

    I had been drawing when I was a kid. Unfortunately I never got any training and only now I am starting to follow tutorials and videos about drawing. I would like my progression to be a little bit more structured and I hope some of the experts can help me figure out where I am going. I am trying specifically to figure out if it would be worth to join a class immediately or just train on my own (maybe with your help) for a while and save the money for later.

    The following sketches are a mix of 30 seconds, 2, 5 and 10 minutes poses. For many exercises I have used the very nice figure drawing practice utility on this website: the reference material could familiar to some of you.

    I have been trying to work on my gesture drawing a little bit more than a week, the result of my work is the following:

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    You seem to be about on the same level as I was a few years back, when I did my 100project. ( Sadly that was during my Bachelor degree and at some point I just didn't have the time to keep drawing on the side…

    Anyway, let me first say, that it is obvious that you are putting a lot of effort into your drawings and that is one of the most important qualities an artist can have. Nobody was born perfect. Every great artist sucked at the beginning, but most of them did so during their childhood when they didn't know any better. Starting as an adult is horribly hard because your art looks terrible and you can actually tell that it is terrible. Yet you have to keep on drawing to get past this phase which is where 99% already give up. You seem to have already passed this point however, so congratulations on that. As you can tell from looking at my tumblr however, the risk of quitting for whatever reason is always there. Never ever quit! Always keep drawing something even if it is just a scribble on a napkin in the restaurant you went for lunch. Practice is important for various reasons (the way our brain builds connections, psychological effects, the preactice itsself, etc) If you keep practicing (at best 10-30 min daily) you'll keep improving with or without class. The advantages of a class are that they have prepared the material and assigments for you and that they tell you what to do. When you are on your own ou have to figure everything out by yourself, organize yourself, motivate yourself and critique yourself. It's harder and takes more discipline, but you are on a good path. Keep it up!

    I assume however, that you came here for more detailed advice on what to improve in your drawings… You should keep in mind that there isn't really a right or wrong way to to draw, but if what you strive for is the accurate depiction of the human body, there are a few things I'd try to improve on if I were you (things I planned to work on myself back then)

    1. Constructions. Unless you erased the underlying constructions of the bodys, I'd reccomend starting to make some before you draw in the figures. If you just start drawing and then notice that the torso is way too big or the arms are too short, you've wasted quite a bit of time and energy. Start with a rough sketch done with a pencil (very light strokes) to see where each bodypart should be and then draw over it. (stuff like this )

    2. If you are anything like I was back then, I guess you are trying to get the basic proportions of the human body down before moving on to details like hands, feet etc. That's fine (actually that is the best way to approach the whole thing in my opinion) but if that is the case, then do not start shading your figures just yet. Get the proportions right first. Shading makes a drawing look a lot better, yes, but it also disguises your mistakes. It is a lot easier to see where your proportions are off when there is no shading on the figure.

    3. Your figures still look somewhat flat, like you're looking at a reference picture and try to draw the outline you see rather than understanding how the threedimensional shapes fit together. Try to construct your bodys from threedimensional shapes every now and then (Here is how I tried to do just that )

    4. Once you've got the proportions right, try adding more details to the bodys. Hands and feet with actual fingers and toes, faces and so on.

    5. After (or during that) add shading, then color, then backgrounds etc. The inportant thing is to focus on ONE THING at a time. Don't try to improve on everything at ocne or you'll just end up frustrated (unless you are a total genius). Stick with one topic, like "proportions" or "muscle structure" or "more detailed bodies" and stick with it until you feel confident enough to move on or hit a wall and don't feel like you're making any progress anymore. That's what the 100project was all about. I don't know if people in this forum are still doing it, but the point was to pick one (and only one) of these topics and do 100 drawings in 33days (3 drawings a day) You wouldn't believe how much progress you can make this way, especially in the beginning.

    I hope that wasn't too much or too harsh criticism. As I said you've already come a very long way and are basically doing everything right to improve. You're practicing and that is what you should keep doing. It is up to you if you feel like you need a class for it or if you think you can manage to stick with it by yourself (that IS a lot of work but everything can be learned. A great book on human anatomy would be "Die Gestalt des Menschen" by Gottfried Bammes. It's entirely written in German, but just about the best book on anatomy for artists you can find. Take a look if you find a copy in a store somewhere)


    Thanks a lot for the time you took to answer, I really appreciate it.

    1. I did erase some of the underlying structure of the sketches I felt were worth working on a little bit more.

    2. In all of this drawings I was originally going for the gesture, and I feel like I can only kind of get the line of actions right when they are.. well... evident. If the pose is subtle though, like if the model is standing up straight or curled in a fetal position, I still struggle trying to find what the line of action is, and what to exaggerate in the pose.

    3. Now that you made me look at it I see how flat all of the drawings are, and will try to draw from 3d shapes and structures from now on. I really do need to work on my prospective a lot.

    Thank you again for your kind critique; I hope I will be able to keep practicing and post some followup sketches soon enough.


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