Critique Requested- Real-life drawing

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  1. #1
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    Smile Critique Requested- Real-life drawing

    Hello everyone!

    After going back over the suggestions given to me in previous threads, I decided to take a stab at drawing from life. This is my DSi, chosen as my subject mater because it's simple while at the same time interesting to draw.

    For the record, I used a 2B mechanical pencil, ruler and circle gauge, and an HB pencil for the dark spots. Or a 2H, I can't remember which.

    DSi is a trademark of Nintendo. I own no rights to the subject matter depicted here.

    (God I hate legalese....)

    Any suggestions for how to improve are very much appreciated!

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  3. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snakefire15 View Post
    Any suggestions for how to improve are very much appreciated!
    Do a few hundred more.


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

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    Smile

    That's the plan, actually! I have eight weeks of summer ahead of me, so I might as well. What did I get wrong on this piece in particular, though? That's what I'm asking.

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  5. #4
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    A bunch of little stuff. The lines aren't converging properly as they go back into space, the buttons don't sit on the surface, etc. But don't get overly concerned with this one drawing, it's much more important to move on and do more. Do that and I guarantee that by the end of the summer you'll be as well equipped to spot the flaws in this drawing as anybody else.


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
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    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
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    will do! thank you very much.

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    One thing that I see is a lot of smudging. Try putting a piece of paper under your wrist to prevent that.

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  10. #7
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    I'll explain it...because I understand the errors as a fail artist. You see, you know the DSi too well. You see it every day. You're using symbol language in corners and angles because you KNOW this object. I drew EVERYTHING like this until I read Drawing On The Right Side Of The Brain by Betty Edwards. Try to find it online or in a library.

    The main things she teaches to get away from symbol drawing--which we also use for fingernails, eyes, hands, etc. and prevent us from drawing what is actually before us--since we just take something from our symbol library, like "this is what a hand looks like" and draw that instead of what is in front of us--are negative space, seeing what is actually there, and avoiding naming whatever your drawing's parts to trick yourself.

    Look at the space AROUND the nintendo DS. put it on like a wooden table and just see the wooden table around it. Don't see the DS. trace the outline of the DS against the table, because you have to convince yourself that you need to pay attention to the negative space around the DS...then the negative space that is the screens...then draw the shapes of the buttons, and everything else, only looking at and paying attention to the negative space (the inside of the DS), the lines, what you see in front of you. Maybe it's better to use an object you aren't familiar with, like a really oddly shaped squash or pumpkin, for this exercise because you don't have symbols set up in your head like "round buttons" "rectangular screens" etc.

    I hope this helps. That book helped me out SO MUCH. I can't recommend it enough.

    I'm new here. My young-adult sci fi webcomic, Firework, may be found here. It's not very good. Thanks in advance for helping me become a better artist.
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    Quote Originally Posted by powerful.pineapple View Post
    I'll explain it...because I understand the errors as a fail artist. You see, you know the DSi too well. You see it every day. You're using symbol language in corners and angles because you KNOW this object. I drew EVERYTHING like this until I read Drawing On The Right Side Of The Brain by Betty Edwards.
    I read a review for that book. The review said that the book was terrible, on top of destroying the fundamentals it takes to be a great artist, it is able to increase the aesthetic appeal of some of your drawings after having read the book, convincing readers that the techniques in the book were accurate, powerful, and to be followed, when in actuality it was all pseudo psychobabble.

    I'm only saying this because from what I've read, that's an accurate depiction of that book, and telling a beginner to use that as a reference may be destructive, and for him to get much better, to be competitive in the field, he will have to first un-train what he learned from that book, and then start again.

    Furthermore
    "The exercises and instructions in this book have been designed specifically for people who cannot draw at all, who may feel they have little or no talent for drawing and who may be doubtful that they could ever learn to draw - but who think they might like to learn.
    Betty Edwards"

    That DS is far from what could be made from someone who "cannot draw at all" and has very mild errors at best.

    The choice to read the book is his/hers, but that book is old, debunked pop psychology from the 80s, and I think that in and of itself should say something about the "expertise" of the artist.

    I can't seem to find any archive of her work, I'm sure she's good given the amount of education that she has and the amount of time she's been doing it, but if you throw weights around enough, you get bigger, doesn't mean you're lifting weights correctly. And all of her education doesn't immediately make anything she says correct.

    All I'm saying is in reference to that book, tread with caution, flowery reviews explode from the way it enhances the immediate ability to copy what you see on to paper, but the only truly extensive review I have ever seen on this book was negative, and reading excerpts of it, where she literally tells you not to think about the structure, she says literally that to focus on planning or structure would be using the "other side" of the brain, and would make your drawing skills worse, I have to at least say this much. Anyone who condones you to not think when drawing, even from reference, by swearing it diminishes your mental capacity to draw, should not be your best resource.

    Any ill will not intended, I'm just saying this purely for the sake of offering counter evidence to help a more educated decision be made.

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  13. #9
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    circle gauge?

    when drawing circles in perspective they will be ellipses.

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  15. #10
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    In addition to Elwell's advice, which is about all you need, select simpler objects with less details. Start setting them up in intersting ways to explore compositions and cropping, and pay attention to values and edges.

    What would Caravaggio do?
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  16. #11
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    Don't worry, you are doing okay for your level. Pay more attention to perspective.

    I recommend Norling's "Perspective Made Easy". That book would help with most of the mistakes you've made in this drawing. Loomis's "Successful Drawing" is good, too.

    Practice making nice, flowing line with the pencil. "Hairy" line is unattractive and hard to work with.

    Hold the pencil lightly, leave at least 2 inches of it between your fingers and the pencil tip, and move the whole arm from the shoulder, not just the wrist and fingers. Drawing is not writing, it requires a different pencil grip.

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  17. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by arenhaus View Post
    Hold the pencil lightly, leave at least 2 inches of it between your fingers and the pencil tip, and move the whole arm from the shoulder, not just the wrist and fingers. Drawing is not writing, it requires a different pencil grip.
    0.o
    wh...wha?
    HOW COULD YOU KNOW?!?!
    WHAT IS THIS SORCERY?!?!?
    ARE YOU WATCHING ME!?!?
    pld:

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  18. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snakefire15 View Post
    0.o
    wh...wha?
    HOW COULD YOU KNOW?!?!
    WHAT IS THIS SORCERY?!?!?
    ARE YOU WATCHING ME!?!?
    pld:
    No sorcery, it's just a technique used to keep your initial framework for the drawing (read: Guidelines) loose and fluid.

    BTW, if you're going for a solid black area, keep your pencil strokes the same - We can see everywhere you changed the strokes. Keeping it all one direction is just better aesthetics. (or maybe just my opinion - I don't like to state things as ultimate truths)

    Doctors heal you, Artists immortalize you.

    "Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach" - bullshit.

    The usual staples for anatomy:
    George Bridgman
    Joseph Sheppard
    Andrew Loomis
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  19. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snakefire15 View Post
    0.o
    wh...wha?
    HOW COULD YOU KNOW?!?!
    WHAT IS THIS SORCERY?!?!?
    ARE YOU WATCHING ME!?!?
    pld:
    Yes, I am your Big Brother, I am always watching you! I am reminding you that obstructing your telescreen is a criminal offense under the Party law of Airstrip One!


    ... actually, it's just experience, not sorcery. The quality of your line is consistent with what comes out when you are trying to draw a long line with a writing motion. Add to that the sad fact that most people are taught to write (somewhat) but next to none are taught to draw.

    If you have trouble switching to the proper arm motion with a pencil, get some charcoal and practice drawing long lines on a big piece of paper - one a few feet tall. Memorize the motion that you have to make to get a continuous line with those.

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  20. #15
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    Well, to each their own method of learning. The book helped me a lot. Here is my drawing of a DS XL if you want to compare depth and stuff--I need to ruler-straighten the lines, and it's not perfect, but it might help you.
    Critique Requested- Real-life drawing

    I'm new here. My young-adult sci fi webcomic, Firework, may be found here. It's not very good. Thanks in advance for helping me become a better artist.
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