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    Apr 2009
    Northern California
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    The Fundamentals and Heirarchy of Drawing

    (Edit: This seemed like the place it would do the most good, though it may fit better under another forum. Please move if necessary. Thanks.)

    Accurate drawing is the first key to representational, realistic art and illustration. The best approach to learning to draw accurately is through observational drawing and working from life using traditional materials in a traditional manner.

    The principles, or fundamentals, are not many, nor are they complicated, but they are challenging to become proficient with, let alone master. Every piece of art starts and ends with the fundamentals. It is helpful to practice them both separately, to work out specific handling of the principle, and together to bring them all into one composition.

    They take years to become proficient with, and a lifetime to master.

    NOTE: This is just my little list and what makes sense to me.

    At their most basic, and in order, they are:
    Statement: Have something to say
    Composition: Arrange it well so it says what you want it to
    Accuracy: Accurate drawing of shape, proportion, perspective and form
    Value: Careful observation and interpretation of shadow and light
    Edges: Careful observation of edges of forms
    Texture: Careful attention to the surface quality of the subject

    Color: Careful observation or interpretation of color in the subject.

    NOTE: There are many important secondary elements such as balance, rhythm, etc. but they fall somewhere under each of the fundamental princciples.

    A certain natural heirarchy exists in representational art, though each subject poses some unique challenges. It is a bit difficult to put them in an order but suffice it to say that you need to be able to handle the more basic subjects very well before moving to the more advanced.
    Basic Forms: sphere, cone, cylinder, cube, torus
    Forms in Composition and Perspective
    Still Life
    The Figure/Portrait in the Landscape en plein air

    Good books to help with understanding and practice of these fundamentals:
    "Drawing Essentials" by Deborah Rockman
    "Drawing Scenery" by Jack Hamm
    "Fun With A Pencil" by Andrew Loomis
    "Figure Drawing For All It's Worth" by Andrew Loomis
    "Successful Drawing" by Andrew Loomis
    "Imaginitive Realism" by James Gurney
    "Alla Prima" by Richard Schmid

    "Elk Skull" - graphite - still life demo for class - 45 minutes
    Attachment 1260654
    Last edited by JeffX99; June 22nd, 2011 at 03:30 AM.
    What would Caravaggio do?

    Plein Air
    Still Life
    Sight Measuring

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