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First attempts at drawing... How to get started. The drawing upside-down and the white space tips both came from of Betty Edwards, in her book: The New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain And here is a link to her website, purely by way of a big thank you! https://www.drawright.com/ OK, so you have finally plucked-up the courage to get that sketch pad out that you were given for your 8th birthday - (you are now 28!) - and you really want to have a go at drawing. A good place to start is just copying a photograph of anything that takes your fancy. Ideally, you want to work from a printed photograph or a cut-out from a magazine - or even a comic, if that is what you are into. Now, first things first... TURN YOUR PHOTO OR PRINT-OUT UPSIDE-DOWN! If you are working from your laptop, rotate the image through 180 degrees. Now. If you are trying to copy a photo of a person, don't even attempt to draw the person. Draw the "white space" around them. So, if for example, they are standing against a door, then draw the door and the edges of the bits of the door that you can't see because of the person who is standing in front of it. What you end-up with is, of course, the outline of a person. But the important thing is that what you have been drawing is the door - not the person. It's exactly the same procedure if it is just the head part. Instead of trying to draw the head, you draw everything around the head. So everything EXCEPT the head. What is left in the middle will actually be the outline of the head - but that is not what you are looking at when you draw it. Same thing if it's the arms, hands, body, whatever. You DON'T draw the hand. You draw the space around it. So, if the guy is resting his hand on a table, you draw the table - not the hand. Then the bit of the table that is missing is, of course, where his hand is resting. 'Same thing if it is a cow in a field. A kettle on a stove. A car. A horse and cart. Whatever. You name it!! When you come to draw in the details, keep the photo that you are copying upside-down and just draw what you see - in the correct location, relative to the outline. So DO NOT try to draw a face. DO NOT try to draw a hand. Turn the photo upside-down!! Draw in the "white space" first. Fill-in the details as you see them. Erase from your mind any conception of what you think a hand, face, head, someone's neck, a horse or a dog should look like. And just draw what you see!! It may take a few attempts but you will very soon get used to drawing exactly what you see - not what you think you are seeing. Or what you think a hand or a face should look like. As soon as you are confident in your ability to just draw what you see - how it actually is - not how you think it should be - you can then work with all of your photos the right way up. And please DON'T practice to much. All that will do is to spoil your creativity and all your stuff will look very boring and technical. Just get on with it and enjoy the process. Once you get going - if you just let yourself go - you will very soon develop your own style. Your drawings DON'T have to be perfect. They just have to be natural and you have to have fun doing them... You don't have to spend hours and hours of drudgery practicing to try and make your drawings look like something out of a text book. Let your own style develop by itself. Last one... If ever you want to try your hand at drawing a live model - obviously, you can't turn them upside-down!! What you have to do is to draw all the "white space" around them first. Get the basic outline of their body. Then fill in the details exactly as you see them. When it comes to eyes - and, especially hands - you really need to just draw what you see. Don't think of these things as eyes or hands. Just think of them as random lines that you have to copy. I really can't understand why so many beginners have so much trouble drawing hands!! They almost always seem to draw them about half the size they should be. If you are having trouble with hands, don't try to draw hands. Just draw the white space around them. It's that easy!! Just give it a go! Don't practice. And have fun! Then upload your results here at artfreaks.com. Don't be ashamed. This site was specifically designed for beginners and amateurs. We used to have loads of beginners when the site first started, back in 2005 and it would be lovely to see some more absolute beginners back on the site!
This is another really useful trick that I learned from: Advertisement Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards. Please allow Standard Privacy in your browser, in order to see the link below: artfreaks.com is owned by an Amazon.com sales affiliate. Verified sales resulting from clicks on Amazon.com product links placed by "smb" or the site-admin will generate a small commission for the owner of this free website for artists and photographers. Tip: (From the book...) Instead of drawing, for example, a man's arm with his hand resting on his hip - look at the space between his arm and his body. Do not look at his arm and do not look at his body. Look only at the space in between his arm and his body... Then draw that space! The same thing applies when it comes to drawing the outside edge of the man's arm... Look at the nearest object to his arm and draw the space between that object and the man's arm! That way, you overcome the tendency of the left side of your brain to make you draw things in the simplified symbol-like images, with which that part of your brain rationalizes the world around you. Then, having overcome this annoying tendency of the left-side of your brain to continually butt-in and interfere with your art - (which is, essentially, a job for the right side of the brain) - you end up easily being able to draw what is actually there - rather than what the left side of your brain would very much like you to draw...!! Try it - you'll be amazed!!
smb posted a blog entry in Vic Rolfe's Art, Photography and Travel Blog - (formerly smb's Blog)Originally posted in the forums: Jun 11 2005, 03:44 AM So now, after about 2 weeks of practice - and with the aid of the most excellent book: Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain I have come up with a couple of passable drawings. Ok, I know that my attempts at drawing are far from perfect... Life doesn't have to be perfect and neither do my attempts at art!! The main thing is that I am happy with what I produced. Not bad, eh?!! When I made the second drawing, I seemed to have gone into some kind of a "state of "flow." I completely lost all sense of time and the drawing just seemed to flow from my pencil. (Well, Faye is extremely pretty and, I suppose, it helps when you are drawing your favorite subject!!) I have tried to repeat this experience but, without that level of success. I guess that it depends on how you are feeling at the time and various other circumstances? Even my other drawings of Faye haven't come out quite so well. Anyway, this drawing has given me the encouragement that I need to keep trying... And I hope that one day, I will be able to produce great drawings at will! Time for another beer!!!