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Thread: Using an easel

  1. #1
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    Using an easel

    Hi all,

    I always hear people say to use an easel when learning to draw, and after 3 years, I'm going to finally use an easel at the next life drawing class and hopefully, it will loosen me up (sitting on a chair with a A3 pad on my laps and holding the pencil in the writing grip really makes me more and more nervous with each passing second).

    Some questions before next week arrives:

    1) Since I'll be standing in front of the easel, and since the easel will be blocking my view of the model, does that mean I've to step sideways / cock my head sideways in order to see the model every 2 seconds? I wonder if that will result in vast inaccuracies, because it'll be like moving and drawing at the same time when you're supposed to lock your station point.
    The easels I'm going to be using at school is similar to this: http://i.istockimg.com/file_thumbvie...tist-easel.jpg

    2) Does chalk pencils (http://www.amazon.com/Cretacolor-Art...4069034&sr=8-2) erase easily? I'm sick of using graphite pencils but I wonder if chalk pencils can be erased easily, because I tend to have thousands of construction lines in my drawings. LOL

    Tks!

    Last edited by Xeon_OND; April 10th, 2012 at 11:04 AM.
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    You can position your easel in a way that you can see the model and your drawing at the same time. I am not sure about chalk pencils.

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    1. Just make sure that you are facing the easel at 90 degrees vertical to the surface when you turn to look at the paper. Forgot that part in the drawing.
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    2.
    Well, at least not on newsprint. Erasing works better on normal paper.

    But the easiest way is just to draw your construction really lightly, and just draw over it. Gesture drawing generally doesn't allow for enough time to erase, and if you want to loosen up, try not to bring your eraser along. It helps greatly with the confidence.

    Or just grab some General charcoal pencil if you want to erase.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xeon_OND View Post
    1) Since I'll be standing in front of the easel, and since the easel will be blocking my view of the model, does that mean I've to step sideways / cock my head sideways in order to see the model every 2 seconds? I wonder if that will result in vast inaccuracies, because it'll be like moving and drawing at the same time when you're supposed to lock your station point.
    As in continue's diagram, set your easel slightly to the right (if right handed) or left (if left handed) of your view of the model. That way, when you're standing at working distance from the easel, it just takes a shift of the eyes to look back and forth from model to drawing. What you don't want to do is set your easel either directly between yourself and the model or at a 90º angle to your view, I see beginners do both all the time and it boggles my mind how anybody can be so idiotic.


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    Don't you have instructors at the class?
    I was told how to tilt the easel before I could say 'hello'

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xeon_OND View Post
    Hi all,
    I always hear people say to use an easel when learning to draw, and after 3 years, I'm going to finally use an easel at the next life drawing class and hopefully, it will loosen me up (sitting on a chair with a A3 pad on my laps and holding the pencil in the writing grip really makes me more and more nervous with each passing second).
    Don't feel too bad - you are in good company:

    Using an easel

    :-)

    I have found the main trouble with working on a clipboard is that I have to look up at the subject, then down to the drawing, and in the process I lose the shapes and proportions. I don't have space for a large easel, but I found that using a small desk easel, I can have both developing drawing and subject in view at the same time, which helps me to achieve better accuracy.

    I do find it a rather uncomfortable way to draw though.

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    Thanks a lot guys! That really clears things up, especially with Continue's diagram.

    @ LordLouis : There's an instructor in the class, but it's kind of embarrassing to ask people something as common sense as "How do I use an easel?", especially since I've been drawing for 3 years, so I thought I would post here. LOL

    Quote Originally Posted by blogmatix View Post
    I have found the main trouble with working on a clipboard is that I have to look up at the subject, then down to the drawing, and in the process I lose the shapes and proportions.
    Yeah, that's a problem I face a lot during life sessions, thus the thought of using an easel to see if things change a bit. The problem with the clipboard is that my hands start aching and shaking after half an hour and the drawing experience turns into agony.

    Anyway, I got a A2 size newsprint pad but I'm not sure how well my Cretacolor oil-based color pencils will react to the paper. Saw some paper stock selling for more than the price of 20 cups of Starbucks coffeee yesterday.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xeon_OND View Post
    There's an instructor in the class, but it's kind of embarrassing to ask people something as common sense as "How do I use an easel?", especially since I've been drawing for 3 years, so I thought I would post here. LOL
    He's there to answer those questions. He's probably been drawing for 20 years.

    The clue is in the job description. "Instructor" He should instruct you, guide you, point the way, that kind of thing..

    If you need it.

    Ultimately, you are on your own.
    All you can hope for is decent instruction and maybe, a map.

    Last edited by Flake; April 11th, 2012 at 11:07 PM.
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