Thursday, March 3, 2016

Blind Contour Line Drawings

The past few weeks we have been practicing more of breaking down objects into the five basic elements of shape, and we've discovered that WE CAN DRAW anything!

We've drawn birds in a tree, and Leo the lion.
We've discussed the importance of thumbnail sketches for layout/composition.

Today we had to use intense focus and silence while we drew blind contour line drawings.  The object here is to use our eyes to follow around the outside contour of an object, and transfer what we're seeing down through our hand and out of the pencil tip.  We call it "blind" because we did not look at our paper while we were drawing!

Some artists got a bit frustrated that their drawing didn't look technically accurate.
We learned that we need to shut off our left brain, and trust our eyes. 

Some artists surprised themselves that the lines on their paper looked like an artist drew it.
They learned that They've had an artist inside them this whole time.

I encouraged all artists to continue to practice this when starting new drawings.  Getting the contour right will help the details to fit in easily.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Open your Artist's Eyes

What a wonderful group of artists we have in this class!

We started off our lesson discussing the Five Basic Elements to shapes.  (Dots, Circles, Straight lines, Curved Lines and Angles)  and if we can recognize and draw these five basic shapes, we can draw anything!

We are currently practicing the most important "trick" that all artists must master - to open their Artist's Eyes and transfer what the eye is seeing down through their arm and onto their paper.  This takes all artists lots of practice, and soon we will all be able to shut off our "logical" left brain that tells us that "the stripes on the shirt are straight" and draw using our "creative" right brain which allows us to look closer at the shirt and see that the stripes actually curve a bit as they wrap around the arm.   We will practice turning on our right brains every time we prepare ourselves to draw.

The majority of the students are working with an impressive level of concentration during our drawing warm-ups.  They trust that all this practice will pay off when it comes time to drawing representational objects.  (and they're right)

I encourage each student to continue practicing "seeing" things through their artist's eyes.  This type of seeing goes beyond the seeing you're doing right now. It's like putting on a pair of magic glasses and suddenly noticing shadows, the way the sunlight passes through a window, and lots of other things most people fail to notice.

Have fun, and draw, draw, draw!