Saturday, May 30, 2020

Drawing from Life

In Part 3 of our Expanding Drawing Skills series, we're going to draw from life

In other words, we'll use our powers of observation to draw what we see!

Do you ever draw the things that you see around you? If so, that's great! If not, let's give it a try. 

Drawing from life helps you to see details that you might not otherwise notice.  You observe how objects are placed in relation to other objects, such as behind or in front of or stacked or beneath or next to other things. 

The best way to get started is to sketch your own belongings - simple things you look at every day.  Use a black marker or Sharpie so that you aren't so worried about erasing "mistakes." Just draw what you see and have fun.

Now let's try some Object Studies.

Find a simple object to draw, such as a roll of masking tape. Draw from as many angles or "view points" as you can: top, side, and three-quarter view (meaning you can see both the top and the side at the same time). Draw these all on the same sheet of paper. 

Try it again with another object, such as this bottle of white glue. See how many views of the object you can find to draw, such as the bottom and a three quarter view of the object laying flat on the table. 

After a bit of practice, it's time for a nature walk! Look for something interesting for an object study; such as this tiny piece of an aspen branch. Can you find a twig, a pine cone, a flower, or an acorn? Use a pencil for this study. It's okay to erase if you need to. 

Let's try drawing something a bit more complex - like toys! If you have any Beanie Babies around, they make great models! You can set up a Beanie Baby any way you want and draw it again and again!

Now let's dig a little deeper. 
For this drawing, grab a small handful of Legos or other tiny toys or figures, and drop them on a table. Observe each piece carefully and draw it. Draw all of your objects on the same page. 

The best way to improve your drawing skills is to keep practicing!
Draw from life every day. Draw whatever you see around you. Draw objects in your desk drawer and on tables and shelves. Draw kitchen utensils and tools and appliances. 

Best of all, draw toys! So much fun! Try drawing a plushy lightly in pencil. Then go over your lines with a Sharpie, adding more details and fuzz. Then erase the pencil with a big soft eraser. 

Next, we'll draw your room and everything in it. Yes. Even if it's messy.

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