Figure Drawing - Gesture/Quick Sketch Practice

Home Forums Critique Figure Drawing - Gesture/Quick Sketch Practice

This topic contains 7 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by Swimteamizzle 5 years ago.

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    I'm a little new here, so please excuse any mistakes I may commit.

    I've been gesture sketching since probably around July/August this year and I've really taken to it. Recently I've been doing the 30 minute class figure drawing sessions here to try and improve my general understanding of the figure. These are 30 second, 1 minute, 5 minute and 10 minute sketches from the past 5 days. I'll try and post sketches of other stuff like faces, hands and feet and animals once I've got a bigger backlog of them.

    Any tips or critique would be highly appreciated. Thank you for reading!

    (I split the 5 minute one because I kind of doodled on those pages and so only scanned the actual sketches, it's ordered from newest to oldest like the other galleries.)

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    Hey Swimteamizzle :)

    Thank you for sharing your sketches.

    My first tipp is to do not care to much about time as a beginner! xD It is much more important to focus on things like structure of the figure, perspective, proportions and a little bit anatomy before you put yourself under time pressure. The more you practice the better and quicker you will draw. Then you can challenge yourself, from my point of view.

    30sec -60sec: I personally think you only have time to focus on proportions and perspective. So in my opinion you managed it already quite well. It would be nice if you reduce the amount of lines and focus more on fewer but expressive lines that represent the movement &/or the outline of a form. So you spend more time "planning" a good line. ,

    5-10min: Now you can focus on everything I already mentioned (structure of the figure, perspective, proportions, anatomy) Yeeees xD. So you already know and used this cylinder-circle-technique thing which really helps to suggest the volume of a form. Good Job! I think you should focus a little bit more on proportion and structure of the figure. If you do not know where to begin start with simple soft lines that suggest the basic movement of the figure (30-60sec kinda prepares you for that). Then you can construct the form of the figure under consideration of perspective and anatomy.

    (The last step would be to draw in a core shadow. That helps to suggest the volume of the form a little bit more. That is what I am doing right know.)

    I hope you can read the tipps and that it was helpful for you.

    Practice creates masters :)

    *my very first critique, EN is not my mothertongue*

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    Thank you for your detailed response, Luhes! And don't worry, I understood your critique very clearly.

    I have been trying to reduce the sketchyness and overuse of line I'm prone to by doing pen gestures, making strokes that I can't erase and have to be confident in on the fly.

    (don't mind the scribbles, I was checking which of my pens weren't dead)

    I still have a bit of a problem with overstating lines, but that's something I'm going to have to deal with constantly through practice.

    I had a feeling that I did have to study proportions and perspective to improve, so I'll try studying proportions and constructing figures through cubes to study how to apply perspective to figures like here

    If you know of any effective sources for learning those, I'd like to know!


    I really like these! I get a good sense of proportion and motion.

    Keep up the great work!


    First of all I'd recommend trying a softer pencil, if you haven't already. Your lines look a little labored. If you're going mechanical, Neox graphite is the smoothest stuff on the planet. (And gets down to 4B on .5mm)

    I'm digging your construction on your longer practices. I'd recommend incorporating that constructive style-- drawing through the figure to explore the shapes in 3D-- in your shorter gestures.

    Also, I'd recommend biting the bullet and just drawing like ten big sheets of feet studies. Of all the non-face parts of your longer figures, you seem to avoid feet the most. Just getting some foot-focused studies done would dramatically help you draw them, since you seem to already have a strong habit of simplifying forms. Hands are looking good though!

    Keep it up, these are very nice to look at.


    Thank you, Beardly and Gongagoo for contributing!

    To Gongagoo, I am using a mechanical pencil for these, Paper-Mate Non-Stop mechanical pencils, I never thought there'd be any mechanical artist pencils or something, I'll look into that Neox graphite stuff and other pencils later. I'll try some other gestures out with the different pencils I have on hand now though.

    I'll try to draw through the forms on the shorter ones, though that'll be easier said than done! I guess I could try that 3 ball stick figure method for that in the 1 minute ones.

    And on the feet comment, I have been trying to build up practice on the Hands & Feet class sessions, I should have enough for another post soon, although I think I avoid the feet the most because some pictures have boots/shoes on them and I slightly panic and try to just box them in then move on, although I do gloss over other feet that are bare, I'll try to detail the feet a bit more in future.

    Thank you both again!


    I think I've got enough content to post an update. Through the past 2 weeks, I've tried sketching with my normal Helix Oxford pencils and I have to say I like them more than my mechanical pencils, which felt more awkward to hold for me. Thank you, Gongagoo.

    I've been trying to go through the other sections of the site, Faces, Animal and Hands & Feet gestures, as well as keeping up with Figure Drawing, but it's only recently that I've managed to make up at least 3 semi recent sessions of those 3, as circumstance left me having to deal with a single session of Figure Drawing a day on most days.

    Here're my figure drawing sessions from the past 3 days - 30 sec - 1 min - 5 min - 10 min, includes some other 10 min pieces from other days I'd like judgement on

    Here are the Animal, Hands & Feet and Face session galleries. - Animals - Hands & Feet - Faces

    Overall, I think I need to learn more about forms and perspective to get better at construction, although I feel like I might need a proper schedule of drawing so I can have time to learn and time to practice, because I usually can't fit learning and multiple drawing sessions into a single day.

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