Thank you everyone for your wonderful support Feeeeesh, EAD, Fishspawn, Jarri, Rodrigo, BludHund . I am finding this forum so important in pushing ahead because of the encouragment and positive energy from everyone who has visited.
mondegreen Thank you for the kind comments. Much much appreciated
I'm far from being profficient in handling color mixing, as the soon to be posted studies will show, but having only to deal with 4 colors continues to be an extremely invaluable exercise. To try and answer at least one of your questions, I found the limited palette the best way to learn to control saturation and values. My 4 color palette experience comes strictly from figure painting classes in the last year. All my experience is in a studio type environment, no high tech set up anywhere, just wooden benches and easy to clean cement floors. The palette I use has wound up being named after Zorn, although, I understand that he allowed for blue in addition, for many of his paintings. Because minute adjustments can shift color temp. it really lets you focus on this important area. 2 of my teachers have learned alot (almost self-taught) through the Richard Schmidt painting book available on his website. A book I've not yet had the chance to crack open . Sargeant also used a rather limited palette and you can see the amazing degree of flesh variations he acheived. One of the many exercises I plan to do is continue creating master copies of Sargeants and others using the 4 colors. Well, with the addition of ultramarine and burnt sienna. The workshops with Sean Cheetham is where I achieved my best work. He trained under Mike Hussar (Google) and uses what he calls a mud palette which includes burnt sienna, yellow ochre light, cad red, cobalt blue, cad green light (a beautiful complementary flesh hue adjuster), and my favorite recent addition for living darks: olive green! how both these artists use their colors is amazing. I'm still trying to integrate all that I've learned from all teachers. lifetime kinda job.
As for no directional light......It sounds like they may want students to construct the figure using only shapes and gesture lines. Even countour. It follows a traditional character aimation school of thought, I think. I've always seen only this kind of approach to drawing, all gesture, all quick among traditional animators. I suspect this approach is to teach movement and a follow through kind of thought process more than anatomical precision. But that's my personal take on it.
Strong directional light is considered a crutch to delineate form by many. Since my background is in the illustration vein, dramatic light is welcomed and always sought. I think it does help you to see form better, BUT you still have to learn to describe it with elegance. Some of the exercises I did were for line calligraphy, others for value and descriptive scupltural form. Eventually you merge all processes. My training is about visual impact in whatever stage you are at in the lay-in, dosn't always work, but that's the goal. Again, an illustrators perspective. Dramatic directional light constructs a mood and value immediately. This thinking will always form a base for me.
Planes were memorized out of the Loomis books as part of my training. Me, I just had to memorize them. Later, I was taught to describe the body using shape symbols. This gave me a ready source of line shapes to explain the figure in any pose as efficiently as possible during life sketching. Even later, learned to analyze what type of simple shape describes/represents the part. ex.; the end of the knee is a box with corners, same as the wrist. Think of body as architecture in it's simplist form. John Vanderpohl is another essential in my studies. Language is a little difficult to follow, but once you get it, boy, your world opens up with a tremendous burst of understanding all the landmarks and sweeps of the figure.
Hope some of this babbling helps rather than bores. I do appreciate your comments and visit to my sketch thread. Don't forget to drop by now and then.
Last edited by AztcFireFlower; November 30th, 2006 at 06:04 PM.
Thank you for such a long and well thought out response. I took a look at Mike Hussar. I swear I've seen that man's work several times in the past. I absolutely adore their work... simply beautiful the way they are able to create such intensity and impact with contrast and color.
Just linking this because I thought you might be interested in seeing it.
Yea I had to memorize those planes pages in figure drawing for all it's worth too... great study material... Loomis is the man. I really do need to ask you though... what do you mean when you talk about symbols for different parts of the body... because that's something I haven't really had much education on... I mean... I've studied a lot of things relating to how the forms join into one another... but if you don't mind talking more about that , I'd sincerely appreciate more information.
I actually have Alla Prima... and I've read through it like twice now.... but I don't think I was really absorbing all the knowledge I could be absorbing from that book.. I think they're might be some gaps in my knowledge base that are preventing me from understanding the things he's putting forward in that book. It has been a year or so since I read it so I'll have to read it again.
So if I were going to start painting from the model, and my goals in doing so were to understand how to achieve
1. solid color and contrast impact
2. economy of strokes to show planes
and of course be able to make that information stick when I go to do it from imagination... what sort of things should I be aware of or be looking for while I'm doing it... and are some of the obvious pitfalls newcomers run into when jumping into this activity.
Also I wanted to ask, for most of the paintings that Hussar has on his website, are they all limited color palettes as well? heh... I think I'm going to go stare at them some more.
I was going to ask also what types of things I should really pay close attention to in the Richard Schmidt book... but maybe some of the things you would say to answer that question will be answered by my question above.
Again I really appreciate all your feedback and insight... just tell me if my questions begin to get a little overwhelming.. wouldn't want to be a nuisance ^_^.
On the color issue, Aztec, how about some pastel studies?
Skintones are an especially troublesome but rewarding topic, and I think some practice with the heavy layering of pastels could be a relatively painless way to experiment. Pastels are also a great stress reliever...hehe nothing like working with your hands in a messy medium.
I actually went out and bought and filled 4-5 boxes with Rembrandts,Giraults and a box of Art Spectrums.................and they've been in storage for 3 years.
Quite beautiful in their pristine state.......
I feel I should learn color first in oils, than continue in pastels ('cause they're kinda expensive). One day, I'll post the mess I make
Seriously, I've always been intrigued with pastels. Some 18th century artists, such as Maurice Quentin de la Tour and gifted Jean-Étienne Liotard, used it with amazing results.
Contemporary artist Daniel E. Greene I greatly admire for his incredible skills in capturing the person in this medium. http://www.mastersofportraitart.com/...its/jessie.htm thank you for the thought.
It's been a while since I last visited. Awesome progress as always. Your longer studies are quite impressive, especially for the amount of time you're given. Please check out my sketchbook soon, as I will update it. My laptop was infected with a virus so the whole thing had to be reformatted, and it's the reason why I haven't been online lately.
What's this? Thin models? Muscular models? Young models? How come you got all the sexy people??
I'm only joking, of course. I'm just finishing up a life drawing class at college in which all the models were middle-aged women of varying degrees of chubbiness. No male models, no extremely skinny models, no very muscular models. Oh well.
Anyway, your renderings are beautiful, and your knowledge of facial and body anatomy is very strong. I'm sorry to say that I have no crits at all for you. In fact, I should be coming to you for lessons. So, in a week or two I'll have a huge dump of life drawings in my sketchbook, if you want to come over and do some critiquing.
Once again, great stuff.
K4pka Thank you for visiting
Interesting comment. I suppose that as I learned to handle my values and shapes it became easier and faster to achieve the same result.
Hey Patdzon Glad you've dropped by again. Thank you. Too bad about the laptop bug invasion. Will never understand the need some feel to wreck other peoples stuff. I'll be sure and stop by your SB. Moai! Hey there, LOL Yeah, been there. I remember college and the choices in drawing class. This is where the imagination (and an anatomy book) come in handy. Good mental exercise, tho.
It is nice to have a variety of models. L.A. has an unusual subculture of models that actually hold workshop parties for painters and figure artists. Most of them are quite beautiful and I'm always under the pressure to do them justice. I've been privileged to observe some excellent physiques, as well. Will definately be cruisng by your SB.
Hey Q-caddlewick Thanks for the nudge. Been PSing my inadequate digital pics when time permits.
Here is another batch of quik-sketches. About 3-5 minutes. I rather like the graphicness of them. Construction is issue here.
Then a set of 20 min studies. The last is a 3-5 hour study. I should note that the finished drawings were done 2 years before the male quick sketches in this set, and in it can be seen that the construction knowledge is less than in the QS. The male quik-sketches were done in Charles Hu's class and he put me in the habit of describing all landmarks, their structure underneath the muscles in sculptural terms. That is; Know that the knee, for example, has 4 sides, as does the wrist. Remember the influence of the particular shape of the bone on that areas' surface at all times.
P.S. Also added another 20 min drawing to post #1 as it is it belongs to the same era.
Last edited by AztcFireFlower; December 10th, 2006 at 02:00 AM.
Thanks for Dropping in JackJack. Appreciate your comment. saa Even now as I look at these older sketches I'm trying to remember that thought zone as I sketched the figure. Use long gesture lines at the start. Sweep the stroke from the shoulder. I use graphic simple shapes for the silhouette. That's pretty much how i always start.
Hey what'sup Ben Thanks always for your kind regards of my work. Know that such support continues to motivate very much.
Here's a few more sketches with a slightly different start. Was encouraged by my Teach to warm up thinking just volume + gesture. So not as angular. Later I bring back the more graphic system while keeping the warm up fresh in mind.
Am catching up the uploads to this year. Few more to go.
The last couple am trying to really understand the roundness and solidness of the mass of muscle groups.
Last edited by AztcFireFlower; December 11th, 2006 at 10:36 PM.