Peter's Sketchbook
I think the reclining girl you did a fine job on, her face is decent and her hand is pretty good too. Also her body, well it may look like that, but you can also embellish a body just like a face, jeff does this a lot in quick sketch. He pumps the shapes of the shoulders, breasts, waist (narrows them), stylizes the shapes of the legs and angles the feet, making it look quite mechanical, but sexy. 

Main issue is just her bicep strangely narrows before going into the forearm. Also her leg that is lifted, kinda strange how its curving into the foot, and the contour of her back... Like i would omit the shadow you have thats casting, just shade a little around where the terminal starts, then indicated with a flowing line the contour, and i think that'd look much more appealing, but thats a taste thing. 

Glad youre doing the Gibson... The orc, very stiff, try spending more time in the loose sketching phase, finding a really really really cool pose, and not just first one or even the first 10. Our good friend Gregokari has a great exercise to get better at pose drawing from imagination 

https://www.deviantart.com/gregor-kari/a...-802236170

The rest are in the notes i left on these critiques and im happy to beat with the stick because i struggled for a very long time drawing attractive women, still not perfect at it, but after a lot of scathing feedback over the years i learned what works and yes... Due to subtelty, it is probably the hardest subject to draw well


Attached Files Image(s)






70+Page Koala Sketchbook: http://crimsondaggers.com/forum/thread-3465.html SB

Paintover thread, submit for crits! http://crimsondaggers.com/forum/thread-7879.html
[color=rgba(255, 255, 255, 0.882)]e owl sat on an oak. The more he saw, the less he spoke.[/color]
Reply
(10-21-2019, 12:23 PM)Fedodika Wrote: I think the reclining girl you did a fine job on, her face is decent and her hand is pretty good too. Also her body, well it may look like that, but you can also embellish a body just like a face, jeff does this a lot in quick sketch. He pumps the shapes of the shoulders, breasts, waist (narrows them), stylizes the shapes of the legs and angles the feet, making it look quite mechanical, but sexy. 

Main issue is just her bicep strangely narrows before going into the forearm. Also her leg that is lifted, kinda strange how its curving into the foot, and the contour of her back... Like i would omit the shadow you have thats casting, just shade a little around where the terminal starts, then indicated with a flowing line the contour, and i think that'd look much more appealing, but thats a taste thing. 

Glad youre doing the Gibson... The orc, very stiff, try spending more time in the loose sketching phase, finding a really really really cool pose, and not just first one or even the first 10. Our good friend Gregokari has a great exercise to get better at pose drawing from imagination 

https://www.deviantart.com/gregor-kari/a...-802236170

The rest are in the notes i left on these critiques and im happy to beat with the stick because i struggled for a very long time drawing attractive women, still not perfect at it, but after a lot of scathing feedback over the years i learned what works and yes... Due to subtelty, it is probably the hardest subject to draw well

Thanks for all the feedback :)

I feel like I'm slowly getting better at drawing attractive women but man it's such a grueling process! Feel like I'm going at a snails pace haha

I actually really like what you did on the reclining female pose. Such a good way to vignette a pose!

That link you sent me are they all invented or are they quick drawings from ref? I'm assuming the first but wasn't 100%.

I feel like I'm at a comfortable level with heads. They can still be improved by alot but I feel like the foundation is there which isn't in my figure drawings. Perhaps I'm best just focusing on things one at a time rather than doing multiple thnings at once like I'm doing since I do not have enough time in a week to do everything that I want.

What do you find works best for yourself?

Reply
Weekly update.

Portrait Class

I felt like this is one of the better portraits that I've done from life. Still leaves alot to be desired but hopefully I'm heading in the right direction? Next week I'm gonna try and do 1-2 lay ins and use the first as a warm up and see what mistakes I make and then use that knowledge on the 2nd drawing and see if this way of working is of any benefit for me.

1h30m



Life Class

Decided to paint for the last session. I transferred the drawing to a cotton canvas I had. Had to change some of the colours, specifically the reflected shadows in her legs as she was sitting on this bright yellow/green cloth (like a high vis vest) and since I was using the zorn palette there was no way of getting that colour. I was also an idiot and forgot to mix a chromatic black as I forgot to bring ultramarine blue with me. I liked the thigh are of the bent leg but that was about it tbh. I found it rather tough as this was on a 9x12 inch canvas and it felt abit too small for me but maybe I should of simplified the forms more and forgo detail like the face.


2h30m total





Master Study

Took Fedodika's advice and worked on the master study I painted and make corrections in photoshop. Decided to colour pick my colours from my painting to keep it consistent. It definitely looks better but I'm gonna spend some more time on it and dot eh best I can.




Sketchbook

Some invented heads. I felt like these where a step up compared to my previous imaginary heads.




Live Streaming

Erik's Class

H/w for week 2 which was focusing on the figure construction. Definitely spent much longer than I should have.




Brian's Class

H/w for week 1 which was drawing the skull. Decided to copy Brian's drawings and try and understand how he simplifies the forms.




Composition

Some more composition work. I'm interested in medieval/fantasy settings so I made that the focus of my compositons, hopefully these make sense?




Haven't been able to work on any more master studies or anatomy or gouache painting. With my day job and doing the live streaming classes and my regular classes in person I'm finding it hard to fit them in aswell. I'm not sure if I should just focus on one of these for say a month or so and then move onto the next thing I want to study for a month etc or if I should just focus on one thing for a week instead. What do people find here to be the best way to practice? Becuase atm I feel like I'm trying to do too much at once.

Reply
i feel like you should just pick one thing and go crazy on that one thing, like youre weak at attractive girls, just do the fuck outta that until you dont find it hard anymore, that way you have this stronger sense of progress and doing this will help you in other areas

70+Page Koala Sketchbook: http://crimsondaggers.com/forum/thread-3465.html SB

Paintover thread, submit for crits! http://crimsondaggers.com/forum/thread-7879.html
[color=rgba(255, 255, 255, 0.882)]e owl sat on an oak. The more he saw, the less he spoke.[/color]
Reply
When it comes to your painting. A practical thing I sometimes do if I have the time for it, is once I've done my drawing, I paint it in with some dark color with turps. Once it's dry, I can paint very feely over it without loosing the drawing as long as I keep things semi transparent. It keeps you from having those very hesitant marks near edges.

I would recommend not thinning down your paint so much, especially on smaller paintings. On a small painting you need the paint to grip the brush a bit so you can actually work with it wet into wet without causing a mess. If your tubed paint is all soft (like most of them are) spread it out on some newspapers or something and let it rest to get rid of all the extra oil. Your paint in the pic is so thin it doesn't fully cover the canvas and it looks like it's causing you issues.

About the colors: Part of the reason the "Zorn palette" is used as an introductory palette is to teach students to have a relative approach to color. If you can't paint a bright green as a color, you have to shift all other colors away to make room for it in a relative sense. I make a lot of landscape paintings making green with just ochre and ultramarine and it gives me a very weak green but I just shift the relative colors to either be more warm or cool and it looks perfectly natural. So instead a green color being green, it's now a blue-ish green, a warm green is a green, and a cool green is blue, yellow becomes grey and so on. That's sort of the whole point with it. Going "oh I can't paint that color" is the thing you're trying to learn how to overcome. It's maybe a bit weird at first but it really comes in handy. What you could have done (if I understand the setup) was to paint the bright reflective green as white and gone for a more purple skin tone.

I would really like to encourage you to look at some artists that approach things differently from how you're currently doing things (specifically, non modern artists). It worries me that you don't really seem to be looking at the subjects you're drawing and painting. It's kind of like you're just using them as a general guide for a drawing from your imagination rather than really observing the subject and drawing it faithfully. I really think this stylised approach you're doing is getting in your way and it's super common to have this problem with the Watts people because they don't really care that much about accurate observations... But you can choose to care and I think being a bit less dogmatic about outlining, marking off the shadow with a literal line, having some kind of predetermined construction, forcing it into some preconceived ideas about gesture, could do you some good. Maybe instead just try to look and be very honest when trying to represent it just the way you see it. Look at Repin paintings for example. There's no stylised dogma he follows, no fancy brushwork or special blending. It's just him trying to put the right color in the right spot. Any idea he has about form, gesture or whatever is entirely secondary to what he's actually seeing.

About your question, I think it's helpful to sometimes just split learning into 3 subjects. Theory, observation and technique. Theory is all the perspective, anatomy, color theory and so on. Observation is just your ability to see accurately, to see what needs to change in order to make your drawing accurate and all that, often I tie this to drawing, color and values. Technique is putting observations into practice, can you make the paint come off the brush in the way you want and that kind of stuff. If you think of art like this, learning is a lot simpler. It doesn't matter if you're doing a figure drawing or a landscape, you're often trying to train something that is a skill independent of the specific subject, something more fundamental.

If I were to put them into a hierarchy then it would be observation at the top far above all others, technique next and at the bottom theory. You don't technically need theory if your other two abilities are strong enough but it can often help, like in the example with the zorn palette. If you're into imaginative drawing, like I also am, then you kind of need to get all 3 really good but observation is the limiting factor. The better it is, the more you'll be able to learn in the other categories.

So a master study is generally great for technique and can help a bit with some theory, at least how it ties into practice but there's no real point in doing one if your goal is to train your observation abilities. Observation abilities are trained when you try to draw anything accurately and continually correct your errors so doing a master study doesn't have any inherent advantage in training it. If you're into technique, then master studies are great because you can try to find ways to emulate theirs through close study. So I'd say master studies are about learning how to put your abilities into practice.

Now if this makes no sense to you, feel free to ignore it, but it any of it resonates, it could be worth thinking about. I'm not trying to say that a certain way of doing something is completely wrong, but I think it's useful to be skeptical about very constrained and dogmatic approaches to "good art". They can be useful at times but also a hinderance at others, like I suspect it is now.

Discord - JetJaguar#8954
Reply
(10-28-2019, 07:14 AM)Fedodika Wrote: i feel like you should just pick one thing and go crazy on that one thing, like youre weak at attractive girls, just do the fuck outta that until you dont find it hard anymore, that way you have this stronger sense of progress and doing this will help you in other areas

That's what I'm leaning to doing now and then just switching topics every month or few months. As you said everything feeds into something else

Reply
(10-29-2019, 03:02 AM)Tristan Berndt Wrote: When it comes to your painting. A practical thing I sometimes do if I have the time for it, is once I've done my drawing, I paint it in with some dark color with turps. Once it's dry, I can paint very feely over it without loosing the drawing as long as I keep things semi transparent. It keeps you from having those very hesitant marks near edges.

I would recommend not thinning down your paint so much, especially on smaller paintings. On a small painting you need the paint to grip the brush a bit so you can actually work with it wet into wet without causing a mess. If your tubed paint is all soft (like most of them are) spread it out on some newspapers or something and let it rest to get rid of all the extra oil. Your paint in the pic is so thin it doesn't fully cover the canvas and it looks like it's causing you issues.

About the colors: Part of the reason the "Zorn palette" is used as an introductory palette is to teach students to have a relative approach to color. If you can't paint a bright green as a color, you have to shift all other colors away to make room for it in a relative sense. I make a lot of landscape paintings making green with just ochre and ultramarine and it gives me a very weak green but I just shift the relative colors to either be more warm or cool and it looks perfectly natural. So instead a green color being green, it's now a blue-ish green, a warm green is a green, and a cool green is blue, yellow becomes grey and so on. That's sort of the whole point with it. Going "oh I can't paint that color" is the thing you're trying to learn how to overcome. It's maybe a bit weird at first but it really comes in handy. What you could have done (if I understand the setup) was to paint the bright reflective green as white and gone for a more purple skin tone.

I would really like to encourage you to look at some artists that approach things differently from how you're currently doing things (specifically, non modern artists). It worries me that you don't really seem to be looking at the subjects you're drawing and painting. It's kind of like you're just using them as a general guide for a drawing from your imagination rather than really observing the subject and drawing it faithfully. I really think this stylised approach you're doing is getting in your way and it's super common to have this problem with the Watts people because they don't really care that much about accurate observations... But you can choose to care and I think being a bit less dogmatic about outlining, marking off the shadow with a literal line, having some kind of predetermined construction, forcing it into some preconceived ideas about gesture, could do you some good. Maybe instead just try to look and be very honest when trying to represent it just the way you see it. Look at Repin paintings for example. There's no stylised dogma he follows, no fancy brushwork or special blending. It's just him trying to put the right color in the right spot. Any idea he has about form, gesture or whatever is entirely secondary to what he's actually seeing.

About your question, I think it's helpful to sometimes just split learning into 3 subjects. Theory, observation and technique. Theory is all the perspective, anatomy, color theory and so on. Observation is just your ability to see accurately, to see what needs to change in order to make your drawing accurate and all that, often I tie this to drawing, color and values. Technique is putting observations into practice, can you make the paint come off the brush in the way you want and that kind of stuff. If you think of art like this, learning is a lot simpler. It doesn't matter if you're doing a figure drawing or a landscape, you're often trying to train something that is a skill independent of the specific subject, something more fundamental.

If I were to put them into a hierarchy then it would be observation at the top far above all others, technique next and at the bottom theory. You don't technically need theory if your other two abilities are strong enough but it can often help, like in the example with the zorn palette. If you're into imaginative drawing, like I also am, then you kind of need to get all 3 really good but observation is the limiting factor. The better it is, the more you'll be able to learn in the other categories.

So a master study is generally great for technique and can help a bit with some theory, at least how it ties into practice but there's no real point in doing one if your goal is to train your observation abilities. Observation abilities are trained when you try to draw anything accurately and continually correct your errors so doing a master study doesn't have any inherent advantage in training it. If you're into technique, then master studies are great because you can try to find ways to emulate theirs through close study. So I'd say master studies are about learning how to put your abilities into practice.

Now if this makes no sense to you, feel free to ignore it, but it any of it resonates, it could be worth thinking about. I'm not trying to say that a certain way of doing something is completely wrong, but I think it's useful to be skeptical about very constrained and dogmatic approaches to "good art". They can be useful at times but also a hinderance at others, like I suspect it is now.

The main issue I'm having with oil paints is that I'm treating turps as if it is what water is to watercolours or goauche if that makes any sense? I was thinking that you use turps to thi the paitn down so it's easier to apply and that you do that for the whole paitning which is completely wrong. My understanding of oil paint is very lacking since I haven't put the time in to understand it. I started watching a muddycolors video on oil paitning which goes over the tools and materials and I've found that help clarify alot of issues that I was having. I think  I just need to understand it more rather than going in blind so to speak. Same with the zorn palette, perhaps reading about it more will help me make sense of it.

Are there any good resources that helped you with understanding how to paint and how colours work? I'd say out of everything it is by far my greatest weakness but unsure where to start to learn more about it.

I do try and draw what I see in front of me and be focused on what I'm doing, perhaps I'm focusing wrong? When you talk about taking a different approach what approach do you mean exactly? Are you talking more of an atleier way of drawing of drawing the outline shape first and breaking the lines down into straight lines (Dorien Itens guide for example), or just other resources in general? I'd say the main reason why I study Watts is, apart from liking their work, is that I'm more interested in illustration which is geared more towards the construction approach (atleast the works that I like).

I think I understand the points you make, might need sometime to think about it some more and let it sink in, is it alrigh to pm you a bunch of questions if I have any, and probably will?

Reply
Didn't expect replying to comments would take me so long. Got some non art related thigns to take care of so I'll post work from last week tomorrow.

Reply
Portrait Class

Had a go at what I suggested in my last update of doing a 20-30 min warm up drawing to wake myself up and help me figure things out for when I attempted a 2nd drawing. I believe it definitely did help so I'll start warming up with that in my physical classes




Life Class

Some gesture drawing to start and a longer pose which I struggled alot with. I was confident going in but had a tough time with my proportions which I was constantly re-working.




Sketchbook

Some more Gibson heads quicksketches to warm up.




Anatomy

I've been diving back into anatomy again, trying to force myself to stick with it and persevere. Been working through that anatomy for sculptors book for these copies and using Paul Richers "Artistic Anatomy" book as reference aswell.

From Ref




A few days later I tried redrawing these copies from memory to see what I had retained and what was still hazy and thne spent some time correcting myself which I plan on doing alot more of.

From Memory




Corrections










Live Streaming

Erik Week 3 - More figure construction. I'm measuring with plumb lines and looking at negative shapes etc but my proportions are still hit and miss. Not sure if I should be spending more time on my drawings or what.




Brian

Week 2




Week 3 - Agian had a tough time with the proportions. It was going well at first but somewhere along the way I messed up which started throwing off the rest of my measurements.




Feedback

Feedback from Erik's classes. Haven't got anything to share for Brian's class yet. So far there are only crits for week 1 (might of updated now) and he had no issues with my h/w so there was nothing to correct.

Week 1






Week 2





Reply
Rather late with an update butter better late than never.

Portrait Class

Started another 3 week pose. Don't really have anything to show from the first week. I started going through Dorian Iten's guides and videos (particulary his accuracy guides) and tried that appraoch to drawing in the first week but it didn't go too well. My problem seemd to be I wasn't simplifing enough and trying to go straight into detail which didn't work at.

I started going through the "Essentials to Realism course" again on schoolism to help me with my block ins, and just trying a different approah to drawing rather than how I've been working to see if it would help me with my accuracy/proportions like Tristan suggested.

This week I completed 2 drawings. 1. using the atelier approach and 2. how I normally draw





Not sure what to do for the final week. I normally paint but I might take one of these drawings to a finish or even start again and aim to get a finished drawing done in the one session.

Essentials to Realism

Some figure practice based on the first lesson of the course. Trying to get in the mindset of drawing what I see.








Life Class

First pic is from before I started working through the course using the constructive/Watts approach.




Second pic is from after I started working through the course again and trying to impliment it into my own drawings from life (only for the longer pose though).




Not sure if it is just me but proportionaly it feels alot better than my past drawings and didn't take as long as I thought it would. Tbh I'm quite liking this way of working. I want to see if I can do this block in first just drawing what I see and then once I have the block in done, apply the construction on top.

Proko Figure Drawing

Wanted to work on my construction, particulary the torso/hip as lately I've felt like I've struggled alot with it in my drawings. Things lke not knowing the positon of the hips or where the legs are connecting. I thought doing some studies, breaking down those forms into beans/boxes might be of help.






Live Streaming

Relaised I haven't posted the h/w's and crits in awhile so here's a big fat dump :)

Erik

Week 4




Week 5 (started implimenting the atelier approach here)




Brian

Week 4




Critiques

Again don't have any trace overs from Brian simply because he hasn't had anything to fix/crit me on so far.










Reply
Where the reference of big head man from week 4?He as really strange proportion.

My Sketchbook
The journey of an artist truly begin when he can learn from is own error.
Reply
(11-18-2019, 05:24 AM)darktiste Wrote: Where the reference of big head man from week 4?He as really strange proportion.

Sorry Darkiste I completely forgot to include the ref along with my drawing. I'll compile the images together tomorrow and post it for you.

Reply
Update for last week.

Don't have anything to show from my portrait class. I attempted another drawing using the atelier method (if that's the right word?) but I was having a really tough time with it. Not sure if it's becuase the model kept falling asleep and fidgeting but I packed it in early as I wa getting really annoyed at myself.

Life Drawing

Work from my weekly life drawing class. I tried the atelier method for my quick sketch this week and felt like my proportions looked better than usual so I'm thinking of working that way for the time being and see if I see any improvements in my accuracy/proportions.




Figure Work

Another figure block-in following Jonathan Hardesty's approach. This is the ref from Erik's class that week which I really struggled with. I followed Joanthan's approach for the drawing but my proportions are still al over the place, the one I submitted was actually my 2nd attempt since my first was even worse.




Following on from that block-in I had a go at breaking down the figure into basic shapes to help me understand the construction of the pose and to help me identify where I went wrong.




Block-Ins

Some more attempts at blocking in the figure/head and not relying on the reilly rythms or construction approach. I seem to be ok with blocking in the head but not so much with figures.






Anatomy

Some anatomy tracings of the arm. I must admit I used a Figure Écorché that I own and tried naming the muscles from memory. This pic was taken from the anatomy for sculptors book so at some point this week I wil do corrections over my attempts.




Live Streaming

Erik

H/W for week 6




Brian

H/W for week 5




Critiques







Reply
Darkiste - Here's the ref compared to my drawing for that figure drawing.




Been working on studying the bones of the arm tonight since I'm rather rusty at it. Thought it would be better to study this rather than do more arm anatomy atm since I'm still struggling when looking at arms, the oritentation of the bones and whether is pronated or supinated.

Found these to be a real challenge, tried looking for the boney landmarks but still found it hard since I'm still struggling to imagine the bones. I'm thinking of posting in the proko anatomy group on fb and see if I can get help there with understanding it all. I don't want to do these trace overs and move on since I don't even know if I'm correct. I definitely need people who understand anatomy alot better than me to give me feedback.

I think that is one of the main reasons that I find anatomy so hard since I can't really self correct if I'm drawing from my own ref and not say a trace over proko did. Definitely need to ask people for some advice on studying anatomy as a whole.





Reply
Some general advice when blocking things in.

You don't necessarily need to draw corners everywhere. If you have two flat areas of contour that work well with straight lines but they intersect with a subtle curve, you don't have to put a corner there. You can essentially leave that space open and our brain fills it in as a rounded corner without you having to draw it. This lets you get the rounded feeling without either having an awkward corner that extends beyond the contour, or having to add smaller segments of lines. You generally don't want a jagged block in because the thing you're drawing isn't jagged, you want it to be as close to the visual impression as possible. This approach also lets you be more direct with the straight lines because you don't have to worry about getting awkward corners, and you can instead just go for the most important flat area you can find. There are of course those who prefer to make the corners connect but I think it can cause "visual miscommunications" to yourself when comparing things.

Another thing worth thinking about is how you deal with subtlety. With these block ins, there are areas where things get very soft and vague but you've blocked them in as hard lines. Not to say it's wrong but I personally believe that we should be open to vagueness in our work and not draw something we can't see. Like, if something is soft and vague, it makes little sense to draw it as solid and strongly defined. So sometimes it works really well to represent vague things as vague by doing things like having soft lines in a drawing or block in or adjust the value of the lines. It can really let you be more truthful to what things actually look like.

I wrote a bit about this in Lizardman's sketchbook, about different ways drawing has been approached historically and how to deal with contradictions inherent to drawings. I think understanding how to represent things visually will be the thing that will really push you forward. You seem to sometimes be forcing every drawing into a kind of box like "it has to be this way", but if we can maybe expand how you represent things, it will look more like the thing you're drawing and then you will easily be able to tell if it looks like the subject or not.

When I mentioned different approaches, it's more to do with how you think. Like what does a line represent? form, contrast or light? should you include tone? if so, why? This kind of stuff. Developing a coherent theoretical understructure to support the drawing you make. I mention some stuff like this in the post on Lizard's sb.

About painting.
The books I'd recommend for painting would be Speed's book on oil painting as the best one I've read. I always have it nearby when I work just so I can read in it during breaks. Solomon and Collier's books are also good. There are books on materials I really like but they're a bit overkill and are probably best left alone for now unless you have a particular interest in it.

Lately my favourite resource has been some stuff I've had translated for me about late 19th and early 20th century russian painting. From what I can tell it hasn't been translated or published in english anywhere and it's really a shame because it's very good advice. I'm currently working on a document that is an in-depth look at this stuff, primarily focusing on Repin and his students. There's tons written about him from friends and students, a lot in people's personal memoirs but I'm still going through all of it. Maybe I can send you the thing once I've edited it a bit to be more presentable.

Most learning is done by experimenting. Look into different ways of painting, learn as much about it as possible and then try it. One thing I did and still do is to look up some artists and study their work, just by looking at it and thinking, or if I can find information, reading about it. Then approach a painting as if I were them, trying to make the same choices in materials and technique as they would have. During these periods, I look at their paintings every day and just think about them, trying to to follow their trains of thought and how I can emulate what they do. Personally I've found it very effective, at least when I want to learn how to approach things in different ways.

Oh and don't worry about sending questions. I'm always looking for an excuse to talk about art stuff I find interesting.

Discord - JetJaguar#8954
Reply
(11-28-2019, 08:59 AM)Tristan Berndt Wrote: Some general advice when blocking things in.

You don't necessarily need to draw corners everywhere. If you have two flat areas of contour that work well with straight lines but they intersect with a subtle curve, you don't have to put a corner there. You can essentially leave that space open and our brain fills it in as a rounded corner without you having to draw it. This lets you get the rounded feeling without either having an awkward corner that extends beyond the contour, or having to add smaller segments of lines. You generally don't want a jagged block in because the thing you're drawing isn't jagged, you want it to be as close to the visual impression as possible. This approach also lets you be more direct with the straight lines because you don't have to worry about getting awkward corners, and you can instead just go for the most important flat area you can find. There are of course those who prefer to make the corners connect but I think it can cause "visual miscommunications" to yourself when comparing things.

Another thing worth thinking about is how you deal with subtlety. With these block ins, there are areas where things get very soft and vague but you've blocked them in as hard lines. Not to say it's wrong but I personally believe that we should be open to vagueness in our work and not draw something we can't see. Like, if something is soft and vague, it makes little sense to draw it as solid and strongly defined. So sometimes it works really well to represent vague things as vague by doing things like having soft lines in a drawing or block in or adjust the value of the lines. It can really let you be more truthful to what things actually look like.

I wrote a bit about this in Lizardman's sketchbook, about different ways drawing has been approached historically and how to deal with contradictions inherent to drawings. I think understanding how to represent things visually will be the thing that will really push you forward. You seem to sometimes be forcing every drawing into a kind of box like "it has to be this way", but if we can maybe expand how you represent things, it will look more like the thing you're drawing and then you will easily be able to tell if it looks like the subject or not.

When I mentioned different approaches, it's more to do with how you think. Like what does a line represent? form, contrast or light? should you include tone? if so, why? This kind of stuff. Developing a coherent theoretical understructure to support the drawing you make. I mention some stuff like this in the post on Lizard's sb.

About painting.
The books I'd recommend for painting would be Speed's book on oil painting as the best one I've read. I always have it nearby when I work just so I can read in it during breaks. Solomon and Collier's books are also good. There are books on materials I really like but they're a bit overkill and are probably best left alone for now unless you have a particular interest in it.

Lately my favourite resource has been some stuff I've had translated for me about late 19th and early 20th century russian painting. From what I can tell it hasn't been translated or published in english anywhere and it's really a shame because it's very good advice. I'm currently working on a document that is an in-depth look at this stuff, primarily focusing on Repin and his students. There's tons written about him from friends and students, a lot in people's personal memoirs but I'm still going through all of it. Maybe I can send you the thing once I've edited it a bit to be more presentable.

Most learning is done by experimenting. Look into different ways of painting, learn as much about it as possible and then try it. One thing I did and still do is to look up some artists and study their work, just by looking at it and thinking, or if I can find information, reading about it. Then approach a painting as if I were them, trying to make the same choices in materials and technique as they would have. During these periods, I look at their paintings every day and just think about them, trying to to follow their trains of thought and how I can emulate what they do. Personally I've found it very effective, at least when I want to learn how to approach things in different ways.

Oh and don't worry about sending questions. I'm always looking for an excuse to talk about art stuff I find interesting.

Any resources you could recommend for academic drawing? There is a russian academic drawing course on nma I beleive that I was planning on checking out, see if it can make something click in my head becuase atm I feel like I'm in art limbo.

I think I understand what you are saying but actually seeing things in practice really helps to solidify it for me. My understanding was that you break things down into straight lines and once you have the whole portrait or figure etc blocked in you then smooth over those transitons, like you said a curve for example so it actually looks like a curve rather than straight lines that resemble a curve. Is that not correct?

You mentioned that I have a tendency to force things to be a certain way. Could you explain this some more as I'm not 100% on what you mean. Are you tlaking about reilly rythms etc or proportional rules such as the features being even thirds? or something else? The past few weeks I haven't been using them apart from once I have the figure/portrait blocked in for say a h/w. I'm just concerned that what I'm doing atm is not "correct" so to speak even though I've bene blocking things in using the acadmeic approach.

I'll check their sketchbook out and see if I can find it or not. If not be sure to check out for a pm!

Regarding the paining books. I've been reading Solomons book and plan on getting back into Speed's book this week. I haven't heard of colliers book before so I'll check it out. I have some time off soon and I'd like to get some painting practice in, hopefully some plein air aswell.

As always thanks for the response :) If I have any questions be ready to check your inbox :) And please send tha translation your working on if possible! That would be a great read.

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More work from last week.

Mainly more academic drawing and trying to work on my proportions/drawing what I see. I've bene basing it off the first lesson in Schoolism "Essentails to Realism" course but I think it might be time to progress from lesson 1 and start incorporating the later lessons aswell.

Portrait Class

I keep forgetting to take photos of my block-in but I did it the same way as I have been lately. I think I need to study some academic block ins and see how they break down features or body parts. Maybe work some more from the Charles Bargue course? I'm drawing what I see, atleast I'm trying but I'm definitely going wrong somewhere.




Life Drawing

Still finding blockin in an entire figure to be a challenge as I kepe getting my measurements wrong or placement wrong which throws off the rest of the drawing. I guess simply doing more block ins is the only answer to my problem. On this one it's hard to tell but she was lying on a chair so her body was foreshortened. It was the width of her body that I kept struggling with, and her right hip as it kept looking wrong no matter how much I measured.




Live Streaming

Erik

Week 7

As usual I did the block in and then applied construction on top and trying to better understand the forms.




Brian

Week 7




Figure Drawing

I took the same ref from Erik's class and tried to correct my mistakes as I was struggling with the block in stage, and understanding the underlying forms.

Construction Drawing

I first tried breaking down the figure into simple shapes and see how I was visualizing it was correct




Block-in

Trying to work on my block-in skills/measuring skills. Did an intial block-in which I compared to the block-in I did in photoshop to see what mistakes I had made, and then trying to self correct myself and take the drawing to a final lay-in. I got abit anzy and tried to visual the bones on top. Probably should of stopped myself.












This week I'm working more hours in my day job so won't have much time for any practice apart from my tuesday/wednesday classes. My plan was to instead catch up on some instructional videos such as progreesing in the "Essentails to Realism" course, maybe that "russian academic drawing" course on nma and some steve huston videos, and some reading of solomon's and speed's painting books.

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Update for last week. Had to work extra hours at my day job so had less time to work on my art so not a whole lot this week.

Portrait Class

Still struggling with my portrait class from life. I'm still trying to work on my block-ins via the academic way but still finding it difficult. I started on a new drawing as I was really hating how the first one was turning out, thought it would be easier to just start again rather than trying to fix all the mistakes.




I think the reason why I'm struggling so much is 1. Poor lighting in my class. and 2. Sitting far away from the model.

Normally if I'm workring from photo ref at home it's well lit and I'm sitting much closer to the ref as I have it displayed on my monitor compared to being a good distance away when working from life. I'm going to try and experiment from sitting further away from my photo ref at home and try and mimic my life class more, and work on my drawing/measuring skills from a distance.

Life Class

New 3 week sinlge pose class started again, this time it's life drawing. Did alot of measuring on this one and trying to get it as accurate as possible. I'm going to see how far I can get in the next class with rendering it as in the final class I want to do some painting.




Live Streaming

Erik

Week 8

Working on putting it all together this week and taking the drawing past the structure portion, making it look more organic and making it look more like what I see.




Afterwards I injected a middle value, trying to work on my control of the pencil as I feel like I'm still too heavy handed, especially when trying to inject a soft shadow.




Feedback

Erik

Week 6




Week 7




Brian

Week 4




Week 5




Week 6




I feel like I'm being rather directionless in my work the past few weeks and not working towards an end goal of sorts, almost as if I'm drawing for the sake of drawing and not retaining the information. Would more imaginative/memory drawing or more finished pieces be a solution to this issue?

I plan on revisiting the poster idea I had a few months ago and try and ink it by hand instead of digital as I was having difficulties with working that way. Perhaps doing that will provide me with an answer.

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There so much stuff to read in here so i am sorry if what i am gonna say might have been said before this message.I think it great that you have an academic approach but i feel like it also play against you in term of how rigid the academic approach tend to try to impose itself as the go to method it important in my opinion to diversify the source of material you study.


If i can give you an advise it would be to do more gesture drawing and try to approach your drawing by working all around the piece to maintain the proportion if you work to much on one thing you will generally lose the proportion in relation to the rest.What i think happen is that you take so much time measuring that when a line is done it become hard for you to change anything.If you want to become free you need to work lightly and quickly by doing this you leave space for change.There will always come a time that your satisfied it at that moment that you can start to press harder to bring out the line.Don't be afraid to be messy it the stage where you figure sh1t measure and check angle and proportion those kind of thing.

Lastly i hope that your using those study and applying them to your own personal project if your not doing this already because if you don't you are not testing if your really understand what your studying.It one thing to study it an other to apply what was learned.By having a good balance between your own personal project and study you can better inform yourself on what next is necessary to study.

I hope this was helpful.

My Sketchbook
The journey of an artist truly begin when he can learn from is own error.
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great work on the thick [email protected]

70+Page Koala Sketchbook: http://crimsondaggers.com/forum/thread-3465.html SB

Paintover thread, submit for crits! http://crimsondaggers.com/forum/thread-7879.html
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