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  1. #1
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    A most unimpressive sketchbook - a 6 month journey

    Hey everyone.
    I've been browsing CA for a while now, always with the idea of becoming more active in the forums. well that day has come!!
    feel free to hold small parties to celebrate

    incidentally, you guys get the best emoticons lol, i am totally going to abuse this power haHA!


    anyway..
    let me get to the point, cause i think half the people who opened this thread have now closed it lol. Basically i have hit another art crisis, i say "another" because my first one happened mid last year. when i suddenly realised that i had been avoiding the real issue in my life..which was drawing..and had been trying to replace it with useless time wasters such as "a social life" and "friends"

    Basically i had stopped drawing in my mid teen at which point anime was the coolest thing on two legs, and if it wasn't in a "how to draw ... " book i wasn't interested. This resulted in me having severely stunted my art abilities.

    So i bit the bullet and did a whole bunch of life drawing classes and picked up the book that would change my life..yes that holiest of books.... Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain
    I did about half of it (basically stopped just before tone) and then went off on a tangent. This happened cause i got such a big improvement in skill that i got all excited and thought "HA i've got all i need now, i can do the rest on my own!"
    oh poor fool was i.
    things were ok for a while, but eventually the passion got replaced by life's little irritants, like jobs and bills...
    and so i stopped drawing regularly again.

    UNTIL NOW that is.
    cause i've just woken up to the truth, i NEED to finish the book..i NEED to do so many more drawings to come even close to being halfway decent.

    So here's the plan (thank god, its about time)
    -every day for 6 months i will update this sketchbook with drawings
    -these will include warm up exercises
    -some self portraits (stole that idea off someone else's sketchbook thread..seemed like a good idea)
    -and whatever else i have time for

    But when i check back in 6 months i want to have achieved a few things.

    -better understanding of tone
    -better understanding of anatomy
    -Ability to draw landscapes
    -and to have finished the book (ideally long before the 6 months is up..i give myself 2 months for that task)

    so there you have it. my pledge to me and i guess to you

    and so now for the meat of it:
    the worst opening sketches in the history of everything!

    I begin first by making my rusty old mind warm up
    then i do a few exercises from the book (in this case negative space drawings), by the second one things are warming up,
    and finally some self portraits, as you can see the first one wasn't a great success, and the second wont win any prizes..but its a start.
    and for record, so i know in the future, this all started on the 30/11/07
    so will end sometime on the 5th 2008

    More to come tomorrow.

    *edit
    oh and while there may not be much to look at now..feel free to crit away and offer advice, or hate mail..or whatever you fancy

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    Last edited by Layer01; November 29th, 2007 at 09:18 AM.
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  3. #2
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    Day 2

    Well ok, so far so good. haven't completely failed to keep my schedule, in fact it went very well.

    Nothing all that interesting here, first a mechanical workout, then some loose doodles, where i tried (successfully i believe) to regain that "drawing as pure fun" space and not be concerned by "rules" and what others think. had a lot of fun doodling that squid..god..trunk-chin..bubble blowing...thing
    and another exercise from the book, negative spaces.
    then a quick 20 min self portrait that looks more or less like me, seen slightly from below..
    more tomorrow

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  4. #3
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    HEY! welcome! i can't belive no one els has posted.

    I recently purchased that book also well i say recently i mean ages ago but because of work (military) i had to leave it :'( so im pretty much stuck in the book 24/7 and ill no doubt go through it again.

    Anatomy is maby somthing worth learning, your tone is awesome! instead of using lines on a face try using small circles to avoud making the face looking flat, i.e your last post on the guys head strait on, as you can see the area between the eyes almost looks 2D and try to avoid doing a hard outline where the shadow ends from beeing dark to light because that can also confuse the overall facial structure.

    Absolute great work tho! loving the outlined picture!! your study pages are awesome too!!!! fantastic work!

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  5. #4
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    Day 3

    WOAH..double post...weird

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  6. #5
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    Day 3

    Thanks JRStagg
    I will keep that advice in mind

    Here are todays pics.
    as per usual a mechanical exercise to start off with, followed by a warm up/doodle session. then some anatomy study, which i think went pretty well if i may say so myself lol.
    and finally later on that day the self portrait. interesting to see that the first one was absolute balls, and the second was a fair bit better. I put it down to the long gap between the faces and the other drawings, sort of a L-mode VS R-mode image heh, and although the shading is quite clumsy i think its getting much closer to what i actually look like...for better or for worse lol.

    well, more tomorrow..

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  7. #6
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    Awesome start, seems you are very devoted.. so I dont see any reaosn this wont work.. good luck

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  8. #7
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    day 4

    hmm well today wasn't so good
    i think i left drawing too late and when i was trying to do it i found it hard to sink into the "zone"
    in fact i felt very irritated and was rushing..which equals crappy drawings..which makes you feel irritated..and so on..bad cycle.
    I think the fact that its late doesn't help. I'm really hoping that in time these types of moods will be easier to beat..but i guess if i draw each day it figures that eventually i'll have bad days :/

    anyway i think even despite all this i did get some use out of the drawings, i cleared up a few misconceptions i had about legs. long way to go, but one step at a time...

    the self portrait is really a token effort today. i feel like i just barely scrapped by and its only the fourth day lol...lets hope for better times tomorrow.
    i hope tomorrow wont be as depressing as today

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  9. #8
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    nice stusies dude, can see some progress already, your anatomy kicks ass.

    Keep it up, see ya

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  10. #9
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    I agree with Ghoulio, your first stuff didn't realy show alot so we couldn't crit as much, but your recent stuff is great!!

    I know what you mean about sinking in to the zone, what i do is go lay down or sit some where and draw in my head to calm my braind down, having alot on your mind never helps when drawing so just a 5 minute chill can do all the difference. I'd advise you not screw up or rub out the wrong stuff, just re-draw the same pic aswell as you can next to the wrong one so you can see where you gone wrong and how you changed it, i found i learnt quicker doing that.

    Fantastic work tho! im not sure what your lines and swirls are about tho.. so if you could tell me/us it would be good ..

    Keep it up tho!! when you hit hard times do somthing that relaxes you, have a shower/bath/nap who knows no doubt it will help. (subscribed to your post btw)

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  11. #10
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    Day 5

    today was much better than yesterday, didn't feel so disheartened.
    The results are ok, tried to stop myself getting frustrated by my lack of knowledge and instead focus on trying to understand the forms in front of me.
    So hopefully i will have learnt some stuff as a result of todays work.

    thanks for the kind words ghoulio and JRStagg
    The swirly line stuff is a sort of mechanical warm up, trying to get the muscles in the arm used to moving in the right way...thats the theory anyway.

    I still feel the results should be better, i'm going to try and do more of the drawings earlier in the day. might help.

    *edit oops forgot the imgs lol

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  12. #11
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    nice figure and hands studies!...keep drawin!

    "dear diary:..jackpot" my sketchbook

    team chow
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  13. #12
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    Day 6

    Thanks Dan Valkar

    i mismanaged my time a bit today and only managed to do one page of studies.
    on the plus side i feel like i really got something out of this study, a better understanding of a foot
    at least from the front hehe..

    i will catch up tomorrow

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  14. #13
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    Whey, foot studys are great tbh, not accurate but deffinatly going to be with more time on them no doubt! great stuff !!!

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