ODAD is back

I finally found the cord. And even while it was lost I kept to my strict ODAD schedule.

So over the past few days I’ve been trying to improve my figure drawing. My character’s proportions have been off and I realized that it was due to how little I understood human anatomy. So I’ve been working on that. I’m not going to post everything that I’ve been drawing, mostly because it’s not that interesting and also because it’s a bit embarrassing–but here’s a few samples from this last week:

It’s been a fascinating exercise and has truly demonstrated the fact of how much practice and knowledge goes into being a real artist. For example: How do you draw someone laying on a bed from the perspective of one standing at the foot of the bed?

  • First you have to understand human anatomy so you know how a person’s skeleton, and flesh work together and will react to lying on a bed.
  • Second you have to know how clothes interact with the body. Where do wrinkles go? Where does cloth lay flat and where does it bunch up?
  • Finally, how do you draw your subject in perspective? The head on the pillow should appear smaller then the feet because of the perspective, but how much smaller.

If you goof any of these, the viewer will know it. The human mind is excellent at recognizing inconsistencies from reality. Think about it, we live in perfect perspective. It might be hard to explain why it’s wrong in a picture, but something in our subconscious tells us that it’s wrong. There will just be a vague sense of looking at a bad drawing.

Anyway, today I made extra effort to draw figures with correct proportions. It’s not perfect but I think it came out okay. I took a few more pictures than usual to show how the process went.

Above: All the tools I use when drawing. I draw everything on Bristol paper–thick, smooth paper, excellent for inking. Before I ink I do rough sketches with a very light pencil (easier if I want to erase).

Above: The end result of my penciling process. You can see that there’s a lot of rough lines, which mostly serve as suggestions of where the ink should go. I spend more time penciling in parts of the picture that require meticulous detail (like her face). Once you’re inking, mistakes are much harder to correct.

Above: The final inked drawing.


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