Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Secondary - Figure Drawing

Volume drawings, small.

10 min. drawing.

Proportion of Human figure measured.
This is a routine I put together from my knowledge of the drawing classes I took as a University Art student. It has been very successful, and students are willing to volunteer as the model. At this point in the year, students are familiar with the proportion of the human figure, and contour drawing.

Drawing the figure from the model (each other) students start with 30 second stick figure gestures and volume (spiral) gestures. Teacher demonstrates, and explains and have students follow instructions with a volunteer model. We do a series of these quick drawings, up to 8. These are lengthened to 1 min contour drawings, and finally, 10 minute drawings where some shading or textures and clothing can be suggested. 

I stress to students that all of these elements will be part of the whole drawing. These are the building blocks to an hour long drawing. We will not do that drawing, but they get a sense of the steps and accumulation of drawings.
Large stick figure gesture drawing.
In 10 minute drawings, students sketch in the basics of a pose. There are few details in the drawing, such as facial features, fingers, textures of clothing, drapery, or otherwise. It requires quick observation from students to capture the gesture of the pose, make corrections, get the proportions and volume. 

Throughout the 10 minute drawing you can point out negative space as a tool to fix and measure the pose against furniture or what is around the model.

Having students work LARGE is ongoing, and by the 2nd or 3rd class they begin to hold the charcoal, or pencil properly, from above, and not like writing instrument. When writing you only use your hand, maybe wrist. Drawing requires the whole arm.

I do 3 classes of similar exercises, the students get into the routine, and improvements are made and seen quickly. Then I move onto, portraiture, or detail drawings of facial features, hands, and feet.

Still figure & Volume gesture drawings, small.
10 min. drawing.

10 min drawings, small.
10 min. drawing.