Could I have some advice?

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  1. #1
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    Wasp Could I have some advice?

    So drawing is a thing I've wanted to do for a long time, a skill that I've envied in a lot of people for having something that I thought you needed some kind of magical talent for. Like a lot of people, I was discouraged by early attempts and gave it up for something I simply didn't have. However, last year instead of taking Earthworks II, I decided to take Art I to fill up that last Art credit. I found I enjoyed it.
    This year, I took Drawing I and II, and Painting I and II. However, I find my self conflicting with my art teachers practices. She teaches very little, instead filling our 90 minutes with, what I consider to be, a waste of time. In fact, I feel the most value I get out of it is the free materials and the quarter in Drawing II in which we did figure drawing. That has largely left me having to teach myself using whatever resources I can (which has led me here). Now its near the end of my Senior year and I have a summer to fill (and I got into my collage of choice ).
    I got a Wacom Bamboo Fun a month or so ago, having a sweet job at an inn that gets me plenty of money. I've had a lot of fun with it, and can usually pull off results that satisfy me given enough time (hours and hours and hours...), and kind of wish I got a Intuos. However I read here that a tablet and PS usually get in the way of the process, adding an unnecessary step. Now I plan on attending a local figure drawing session, although I'm a bit intimidated by the thought of it- I don't want to make a fool of myself with my noobishness. Yadda yadda blah blah, question time.
    So I've been drawing for more or less then a year, on and off as my interest has been slowly increasing.
    /mini-wall-of-text

    What materials should I bring to a figure drawing session? Paper size, meduim (most comfortable with pencil, charcoal, and ink), and attitude (ie, what should I find important to focus on?)?

    What can I do to improve the quality of my line work (such as exercises, etc.)?

    How many posemaniac sets should I do a day?

    As I have said earlier, I saw a topic in which the users discouraged the use of a tablet until you really learn the ropes (here). However I REALLY love my tablet and I admit I'm one of those people who are 'intimidated' of using materials, mostly because the nearest art supply store is 45 minutes away and using PS+tablet gives me an unlimited amount of 'supplies.' How often should/can I use my tablet? Does me using it really effect my advancement that much?

    How the hell do you draw people in cafe's when they keep moving around?!?!

    Any other advice, books, motivation, whatever you think is useful.

    Also, I don't want anyone to get a false impression that I think I can suddenly become an awesome concept artist and that's what I'm going to to school for- I don't and its not. This is a hobby I have a great interest in for the purpose of self improvement.

    PS: I don't know if this (Art Discussion) is the right board for this, if its not feel free to move it.

    Wow, thats a LOT longer then I thought it would be.


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  3. #2
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    Materials:
    - 18x24 Newsprint
    - Drawing board to place your newsprint on
    - Charcoal pencil (try to have several sharpened to be used in case one breaks or dulls out during a pose)
    - Sandpaper (used to sand edges of your pencil to create a fine point)
    - Razor (used to cut and sharpen your charcoal pencil)
    - Kneaded eraser

    What to work on:
    This is how I've been taught figure drawing, don't take it as THE way. In steps.
    1.) Gesture and Proportion (Gesture is the most important element of your figure)
    2.) Boxes
    3.) Anatomy
    There are many other ideas in figure drawing but this is just generalized. Once you familiarize yourself a little with figure drawing you can start exploring other peoples break downs and ideas that best fit you.

    I've seen people practice by drawing lines over the form of a sphere over and over on a newsprint page. It helps familiarize your arm with the movement and helps you achieve stronger and confident lines with your charcoal pencil.

    Artists that I've found useful for figure drawing are: Frank Reilly, Glenn Vilppu, George Bridgman, Gottfried Bammes, Steve Huston, Kevin Chen. Other great resources are other students in the figure drawing workshop. Try to get as much information as you can out of these individuals, keep discussing problems and possible solutions with them.

    As for the issue with pen and tablet I would say you probably would not gain any extra benefit compared to just picking up a sketchbook and pencil. If you know how to draw and paint with real life mediums then the transition to digital is seamless. That can't be said the other way around though. I do not know if it will hurt your growth if you jump into digital too early, from what I've seen you can do both.

    Hope this helps!

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  5. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by B-Ren View Post

    What materials should I bring to a figure drawing session? Paper size, meduim (most comfortable with pencil, charcoal, and ink), and attitude (ie, what should I find important to focus on?)?
    bring a little of each. practice in all mediums and you'll learn the most. Focus on volume, shape, tint/shade ect. Don't overthink though, just draw.

    What can I do to improve the quality of my line work (such as exercises, etc.)?
    Study master drawings and figure drawing books and copy their mark making techniques. I'm not sure about specific exercises but Im sure others will help you

    How many posemaniac sets should I do a day?
    as many as you want. The important thing is that you keep drawing

    As I have said earlier, I saw a topic in which the users discouraged the use of a tablet until you really learn the ropes (here). However I REALLY love my tablet and I admit I'm one of those people who are 'intimidated' of using materials, mostly because the nearest art supply store is 45 minutes away and using PS+tablet gives me an unlimited amount of 'supplies.' How often should/can I use my tablet? Does me using it really effect my advancement that much?
    You should use the materials on your tablet in real life as well. If you don't know how to paint by hand you're going to have trouble with a tablet. Tablets are useful nowadays though since many jobs are in graphics arts so it's good to get familiar with it

    How the hell do you draw people in cafe's when they keep moving around?!?!
    Do it quickly. You have to make a quick gesture sketch of the pose and then spend time developing it.

    Any other advice, books, motivation, whatever you think is useful.
    DEFINETLY study books by Andrew Loomis and George Bridgman on Scribd.com their the best to learn anatomy from and you can see their books for free on the site. Michael Mentler is also helpful. Check the "Book of Bones" thread in the "Fine Arts and Discovery" forum. Other than that just draw as much as you can. Take a sketchpad with you and draw things whenever you get a chance. The more you draw the better you become at it. Hope that helped you a little.

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  7. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by B-Ren View Post
    As I have said earlier, I saw a topic in which the users discouraged the use of a tablet until you really learn the ropes (here). However I REALLY love my tablet and I admit I'm one of those people who are 'intimidated' of using materials, mostly because the nearest art supply store is 45 minutes away and using PS+tablet gives me an unlimited amount of 'supplies.' How often should/can I use my tablet? Does me using it really effect my advancement that much?
    I really wouldn't worry too much about supplies. All you really need is a free pencil (or pen), and some printer paper. (And this coming from an art supply addict...) You have plenty of time to discover your material preference, whether it's conte crayons or oil paint, but no matter how good the paint or expensive the pencil...they won't make you a better artist in the fundamental respect.

    Obviously some materials make things a bit easier...a good eraser being one of them. Also, crap products can be more frustrating than useful, and crappy paintbrushes are very good example of this, but it does you no good to buy things so "nice" and expensive that you're terrified of using them. If you want a list of reasonably priced and useful supplies we can prob. give you some good suggestions.

    But...most important of all...if you enjoy something, do it. Some people may be more driven if they dangle the "digital carrot" in front of themselves as something to work towards. If that's you, by all means put the tablet away. If, however, your carrot is simply becoming a better artist...let yourself have some "play time". Digital is simply a different medium, and is one that if you have the right mindset can work with your learning instead of against it. There are a lot of traditional medium exercises that can be converted to digital. Take a bit of time as well to learn the common pitfalls of digital and how to avoid them. (i.e. overuse of filters, burn tool, addiction to ctrl+z).

    Personally I like to take little breaks from traditional, and paint "free to color" line art, because color is what I enjoy even if I "might not be ready for it". I still try to keep fundamentals in mind while I do these and mindfully practice blending, and stroke pressure. Sometimes it's easier for me to experiment when the groundwork isn't "my art". (This is not a disadvantage free method of practice mind you, but it's fun for me at least.) Do what works for you, and what you enjoy, because that is the point isn't it?

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  9. #5
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    Oh wow, Bridgeman really is useful. I admit I was a little skeptical when I picked them up and flipped through them, but now I can see why his name is around so much.

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  10. #6
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    A little piece of advice, order your art supplies online. I haven't seen an art supply store in my area that didn't mark up the supplies 40-60% (although I didn't look at 3 stores or so).

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  11. #7
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    I believe this little gem would be a good place too look also.

    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...d.php?t=138102

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  12. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by tandy1000 View Post
    - Charcoal pencil (try to have several sharpened to be used in case one breaks or dulls out during a pose)
    An old life drawing class trick: Cut your charcoal pencils in half. Not only will you have twice as many sharpened points to work with, but the shorter pencil is easier to hold in a non-writing grip, encouraging the use of your whole arm.


    Tristan Elwell
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  14. #9
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    Does anyone know of any decent sites where I can get some artistic nude photos for some studies to hold me over until school is over (2-3 weeks) and I can attend figure drawing session? I know of dA stocks and Character Art, but are their any others?

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  15. #10
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