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been lurking for a while, reading all the great posts on this site.
I've decided I'd like to get serious about drawing, and my rendering of the human figure sucks so I want to work on it first.
I can't get to a figure drawing class and it's too hard for me to draw people on the street right now (because they won't stay still long enough).
But I have some books, by loomis, bridgman, hogarth...
what else can I do? am I supposed to just do self portraits a bunch of times to practice?
I don't think anything can replace life drawing, but yes, self portraits would help if you're trapped in a box with a mirror or something.
If you go about your house, you'll see people also doing things. Have friends pose, yes it may suck but let them know you're trying to get better at drawing, they'll understand. And no, it doesn't have to be nude posing
You'll find other places than just the street, malls, coffee shops, libraries, people waiting for the bus etc...
If you're just beginning to get serious about drawing I wouldn't recommend jumping into the figure first. Start with simpler subjects...basic primitive forms like cylinders, boxes, spheres, eggs, etc.
To draw well you need to observe and understand form in space and how light and shadow work. That has nothing to do with the subject, in other words if you can't draw an apple or a pair of shoes well you won't be drawing the figure well either.
A good book for getting serious about drawing is "Drawing Essentials" by Deborah Rockman...basically college level drawing coursework. Good luck!
To rephrase what others have said- life drawing is not necessarily drawing people. It's drawing real objects that you see in front of you, not from a photo or someone else's artwork: tables, glasses, cups, shoes, bananas, flowers, couches, pillows, lamps, trees, roads, cars, sidewalks, chairs, rooms, your feet & hands, curtains, houses, windowsills, sculptures, phones, radiators, bicycles, cats, dogs, hamsters, clothes, plants, bridges, hallways, etc, etc, etc
thanks for all your responses!
LukasA: I'm going to a college where no one lives on campus, it's summer time right now, so there's even less people, in my apartment it's basically like a box with a mirror D:
But I guess I could start doing people again in a couple months when they all come back for fall semester.
I think maybe I should start a "studies everyday" thread in sketchbooks to have some accountability. Unfortunately they will all be digital, even though I will be doing traditional also, I don't have a camera or scanner x_x
oh well... gotta get to work!
i used to go to pubs and bars during the daytime to draw quite a bit. there's a good mix of people, scenery, and objects, it's not too busy, and people tend to stay in roughly the same position for at least the length of a drink. great practice i think.
there's a small pub near here but yeah it's small so most likely someone will notice some punk kid trying to draw them surreptitiously in a dark corner >_>
thanks guys, went to the uni library today to print bargue plates with their nice printers, and found that it was relatively quiet and people sat still for a long time at the computers.
Pencil mileage ahoy
The unwitting patrons of Starbucks are GREAT fodder for what I call FREE life drawing. (As opposed to the usual $10 you'll pay here in the Seattle area for 3 hours).
Plus, the lighting is also better, by far, at times.
And, if the pose sucks, just wait a bit. (Untutored life sessions usually suffer from what dpaint has called "flop poses" and sometimes the lighting of the model kinda sucks).
But, no, there's no substitute for REALITY.
Hey - don't knock the two hour flop pose! They're great for doing drawings of fellow students drawing the flop pose...a focused study of a hand...or an effort to include the stage and environment.
I don't typically ask for permission because:
- People around here are actually very open to that sort of thing and often ask to see my drawings.
- I mostly do small gestural drawings and switch to a different person every minute or two. This also means the people they represent aren't really identifiable out of context.
Wrote a thread about it earlier .. but buy/draw some toys.
Im finding it dam hard but its fun and you are drawing from life.
do you know any good drawing clubs around San Francisco and area? I mean when people get together and draw each other or a model ...? I was taking part in these many many years ago and it was fun and very productive.....!!
I was also looking to draw some alternatives to life drawing, and this topic has really helped me a lot with great options shared here...
thanks JeffX99. are they good? did you try anything from it? do they have good atmosphere?
Sure they're great outings to meet up with a bunch of like-minded people. From there you can start to network and find groups that draw more often together. I live 3 hours away so have only done it once...but a friend of mine goes whenever he's in town.
After you've done some ife drawing(or taken at least on or two figure drawing classes), photographs may help you improve if you can get the right kinds. You need tohave taken some figure/real life drawing, though, otherwise there is a greatr chance of you copying the photograph instead of it's model.
Life drawing is still better, though.
Simple tip: find something you like drawing, and draw that, or real life related subjects to it. It'll ease you into the zone, I know that much.