Hiya guys, I've run into another issue that I haven't been able to solve on my own so I'm hoping for some input. Sorry in advance for the length.
Somewhere on here I read a quote that said, "You must learn to draw from observation before you can draw from imagination." I've been thinking about this and wondering just how true it is. I enjoy drawing from observation, both photo and life, for gestures and quick sketches and practicing this and that, but there is one area of drawing that I've found I don't like drawing from observation; a fully rendered drawing. I've done a few of these and at first I was in love with the idea, but that quickly changed as a couple drawbacks presented themselves. First, while doing them I am often thinking about how many gestures or studies or sketches I could have done in the hours and hours spent on this ONE drawing. How many more new things could I have learned with that hard to come by drawing time? Secondly, in the case of photoreference, which this almost always is for me, I don't feel that I'm creating anything, just transfering someone else's art (the photographer) into a different medium. It leaves me very unfulfilled.
Now, if you'll follow me over to the idea of drawing from imagination; the idea of doing full renderings here really does excite me. I have an excellent imagination and am always sketching scenes that really speak to me and capture an emotion or the essence of something. I'm getting to the level where I feel ready to take these scenes from sketches and line drawings and make them into fully rendered works.
This is where I'm hitting a snag.. How to accurately render the values of a scene without reference? Sure, you can find some reference online, and it is sometimes possible to shoot your own but thus far I'm having very little success with this, especially since I have such a precise visual of what I want. What I find online is always from the wrong viewpoint or the wrong angles or the lighting is inconsistant due to pulling from multiple images. Shooting my own is often impractical or impossible
So far I'm doing the best I can just visualizing the planes and thinking my way through it, but there are so many variables.. Different materials (leather, fabric, glass, wood, stone, fur..) of different colors (natural values?) at different angles..etc etc. How do you render a glass of scotch sitting on a dark wood table in a dark room backlit by a roaring fire? See what I'm saying?
So here are the answers I'm considering so far..
A. You really do have to do lots of these renderings from observation/reference until you've built up the experience figure this stuff out when working from imagination.
B. This is far more advanced than I realized and I should hold off until later and seriously consider option A.
C. Accept the fact that you don't yet have the skills and experience to pull it off like you imagine it but you should still keep at it and do your best and not be hard on yourself with the results.
So, thanks for reading and thanks for your suggestions and hopefully this thread will be helpful to others out there with the same problems both now and in the future.