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  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by doodlebugger View Post
    [...]
    That's what I can recall from memory. I guess my problem is with gesture you're encouraged to go fast and I fail to remember these things at that speed.
    Recall from memory is not good enough, you need to internalize the human figure, which is why I recommend you study Loomis' mannikin, until you can draw it effortlessly in various poses, from observation and imagination.
    Grinnikend door het leven...

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  3. #17
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    I'll do my best at that then! I've never been the greatest at studying but just drawing a bunch of cartoons hasn't gotten my anywhere so far. The studying route is looking a bit more promising.

  4. #18
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    Hello again! I've had a little while to study and do more gesture and figure drawings.

    Here's some gestures from class:

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    They're definitely better than what I posted in the first post of this topic, but still not good enough!

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    These are two figure drawings I did. I'm okay with the first one I guess, although I feel a lot of the lighting and value looks arbitrary, I guess since I haven't studied muscle anatomy much and didn't know exactly what it was I was drawing. The second one the face kind of creeps me out haha, I haven't done much study on faces either so I usually don't get those right except by dumb luck.

    If there's any other ways I can improve you can let me know!

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    I think the second one shows some promise! I like how you've separated off the different areas of shadow. Although in the first one (left) the lit areas do seem kind of random. But you will figure out better how to handle lighting with some more experience.

    But for now my advice would be to work on drawing in better proportions. And you don't need to read 100 anatomy books in order to get human proportions right. There is more than enough information right there in front of you, if only you know how to represent it! In other words: draw what you see. Look the biggest relationships between shapes at first. How long is the torso compared to the legs? How big is the head compared to everything else? I think observing bigger masses and focusing less on symbolic drawing is going to be key to improving. I see you drawing a leg, or a boob, or eyes. Just try the shapes you see. It's probably going to look like crap for a while, but you will get it.

    For me, I drew for a long time without being able to really separate the raw visual information I was seeing, from what I thought I knew about an object. (I would draw an eye like however I thought it should look, not what was in front of me). Eventually it clicked that I could just see shapes for what they were, and not as lips, or a nose, or eyes. What you want is to get to that point as soon as you are able. Drawing on the Right side of the Brain by Edwards might help explain but don't take the science too seriously.

  6. #20
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    Yes! I like to think I'm always drawing exactly what I see but I'll have to watch myself and see if that's really what I'm doing. I feel as though sometimes I do things like always drawing the forearms as just rectangles with a bump, the head as an oval, boobs as half-circles, etc. I have another class tomorrow, I'll see if I catch myself doing any of that symbolic drawing.

  7. #21
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    Good start keep them coming !

  8. #22
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    These are two figure drawings I did. I'm okay with the first one I guess, although I feel a lot of the lighting and value looks arbitrary, I guess since I haven't studied muscle anatomy much and didn't know exactly what it was I was drawing. The second one the face kind of creeps me out haha, I haven't done much study on faces either so I usually don't get those right except by dumb luck.

    If there's any other ways I can improve you can let me know!


    You pointed out the problem right there: you need to increase your understanding of the anatomy and structure of the human figure. Although gesture drawing is not about anatomy, the gesture is created by the anatomy. There's no way around the fundamentals if you want good drawings.


  9. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by fantasyartist View Post
    Although gesture drawing is not about anatomy, the gesture is created by the anatomy.
    I beg to differ: the gesture is created by the action.
    Grinnikend door het leven...

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  10. #24
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    I beg to differ: the gesture is created by the action.


    I understand your point. Let me rephrase what I said: the gesture is expressed through the anatomy.

  11. #25
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    I saw you say this line earlier

    I guess my problem is with gesture you're encouraged to go fast and I fail to remember these things at that speed.
    Then slow it down. There is nobody saying you have to be super fast with your gestures. If when you do gestures super fast, they come out like crap, then slow it down to a speed that they don't. The right way, is whatever way works for you. In the future, once you can get the lines down in a controlled correct manner, then you can speed it up to challenge yourself.

    I think the reason for timing gestures to like 30 seconds, or 1 or 2 minutes is to see if you can describe the form/action in as few strokes as possible (for some people at least) and by making the time limit short, it makes you move quickly to get something down.

    A possible better way for beginners is to say, I want to get the gesture for this drawing down to 6 strokes (or whatever number you decide). Then with each stroke you take a number off of what you have left until you are down to 0. Don't rush tho, just really think about each stroke and go as slow as you need to be to get it right/presentable.

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  13. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by fantasyartist View Post


    You pointed out the problem right there: you need to increase your understanding of the anatomy and structure of the human figure. Although gesture drawing is not about anatomy, the gesture is created by the anatomy. There's no way around the fundamentals if you want good drawings.

    Hello! Yes, I've lately been studying Andrew Loomis' "Figure Drawing for All It's Worth" to help me with anatomy. It's pretty difficult, especially memorizing all the underlying muscle masses, but I'm keeping at it. I think improving my technique is the bigger issue right now but I don't underestimate the importance of learning anatomy either, it's just a bit of a slow difficult process for me haha

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Fraser View Post
    Then slow it down. There is nobody saying you have to be super fast with your gestures. If when you do gestures super fast, they come out like crap, then slow it down to a speed that they don't. The right way, is whatever way works for you. In the future, once you can get the lines down in a controlled correct manner, then you can speed it up to challenge yourself.

    I think the reason for timing gestures to like 30 seconds, or 1 or 2 minutes is to see if you can describe the form/action in as few strokes as possible (for some people at least) and by making the time limit short, it makes you move quickly to get something down.

    A possible better way for beginners is to say, I want to get the gesture for this drawing down to 6 strokes (or whatever number you decide). Then with each stroke you take a number off of what you have left until you are down to 0. Don't rush tho, just really think about each stroke and go as slow as you need to be to get it right/presentable.
    I understand what you are saying. Truth is when we did 30sec-1min gesture drawings in class I would rarely ever finish, which definitely points to the idea that I was missing the point of them. More recently we've been doing 5 minute ones which are a much more comfortable speed for me.

    Thank you all for replying again! Recently I've come down with a cold so I had to miss my last few classes unfortunately, but I hope to get back at it tomorrow and I've been doing digital practice in the meantime. Hopefully I'll having some results to post soon!

  14. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by fantasyartist View Post


    I understand your point. Let me rephrase what I said: the gesture is expressed through the anatomy.
    So, in a simple cartoon character, without anatomy, there is no gesture?
    Grinnikend door het leven...

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  15. #28
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    So, in a simple cartoon character, without anatomy, there is no gesture?


    A simple cartoon character has anatomy. Anatomy refers to the structure of something, it doesn't necessarily have to be bones and muscles.


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  17. #29
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    Hello! Unfortunately I'm feeling very discouraged today. I did some gesture drawings yesterday that I feel were a step down from my previous ones, it's really calling attention to some problems.

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    I think these aren't very good at all, and it makes me sad. I did basically the same thing I did last time, the only difference was my pencil was a little dull this time, and it was a different model of course. But those should be challenges I was capable of overcoming, and I'm disappointed that I wasn't able to.

    There are some problems I think I've identified but just don't know how to address:

    1. My drawings all look flat and stiff: Even with shading there's very little feeling of depth to my drawings. I could draw like, a line down the center to show a figure's curvature, but I feel like that's a lazy way out. I want to be able to convey depth with the contours alone.

    2. Problems drawing the torso and hips: I always drop the ball trying to draw the central body. It often seems to come down to a rectangular shape and I find it hard to make that look interesting, or give it a sense of depth.

    3. Problems drawing the head and hair: I started not being satisfied just drawing an oval for the head anymore. But my replacement of just drawing a rounded object with a little pointed area for the chin isn't much better, and I need to find a good mnemonic to memorize where the features line up on the head. Hair is usually a mixed bag for me; sometimes its crazy randomness makes it easy for me to draw in a pleasing, if not accurate way. This particular model had dreadlocks, which I had no idea how to approach drawing. I find it's mostly with male hairdos that I struggle to draw in an interesting way.

    4. I'm no good at eyeballing proportions: Oftentimes I'll be making the head too small or the legs too long before I even realize what I'm doing. Maybe I need to slow it down a bit but I'd like to train myself to get the gesture quickly.

    Those are my ideas of where I'm struggling, if you feel there are any other consistent flaws I should be looking in to or you can suggest a way to address the ones I've pointed out I would be very thankful!

  18. #30
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    woah woah there tiger for every good drawing you will make there will be 1000 bad ones.

    1. in my opinion you shouldn't even be remotely thinking about shading these figures, rendering won't save you if your drawing is bad (also you dont shade along with the form in warp lines, so that's why it looks flat too) about the flow, well, grab Matessis gesture book and copy the gestures. But I mean copy intently, not copy without thinking analyze what he does, read what he has to say, because each line in a gesture has a meaning. You're not using bouncing rhytmic lines in your drawing, you're just doing the outline, that's why it looks stiff.

    2. practice and experiments; there's no easy way out of this one the torso and hips will look different from different angles, from the back it's more round, like a bucket, from the front it's more boxy, there is no one way to do this

    3. there is no reason you should be focusing on the head, facial features and hair right now, that comes way way after gesture drawing And there is no reason you should be drawing hair in your gesture drawing right now unless it helps the flow and composition you're focusing too much on the little details instead of getting the big action of the pose.

    4. well you just started, rome wasn't built in a day! This is something you will struggle with, especially in harder poses, like sitting or laying down. The only thing you can do is practice, and practice well.

    good luck with further drawings
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    "Second place is the first place among the last ones, and that's not my target."- Zlatan Ibrahimovic

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