Yes, I know I’ve been neglecting this blog while gallivanting off and doing other things, but I wanted to let you all know about my new sketching blog: http://drawingteddybears.wordpress.com/
I picked up the sketchbook and drawing textbook again this weekend, so here’s what I managed to draw:
First off, an attempt to draw Peter Capaldi as Doctor Who, based on a still frame from near the beginning of “Robot of Sherwood.” I tried to do this a week earlier with a full-face portrait of Jenna-Louise Coleman as Clara, and gave up in the middle because I couldn’t get her to look anything like right. It’s possible my standards were too high for Jenna. This doesn’t really look like Capaldi, but at least I got myself to finish and it’s recognizably a man:
Well, one thing I managed to do during August was pull out my “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” stuff and do a few profile portrait exercises, including a live sketch of my mom. First, though, was another copying exercise. Here’s the profile picture that I was copying out of the workbook, “Madame X” by John Singer Sargent:
This is the freehand copy that I made of the Sargent portrait: Read the rest of this entry »
Hello again, dear friends and followers. Sorry I haven’t been updating more often, but I guess I got out of the habit when I was off at Odyssey.
So, first off, I wanted to share another ‘Right side of the brain’ drawing tonight. I did this at the end of August, another perspective exercise, featuring the corner of a room:
I do like the way it came out, though sometimes I worry that I’m not getting too much from these exercises the way I come back to them every few weeks. I need to get started on some more drawing for September, maybe I’ll get some done this weekend.
So, what else have I been up to? Well, reading some cool short stories on my Kindle, (and out of the free copy of Asimov’s Magazine that Sheila Williams gave us when she came to lecture at Odyssey; that was my ‘to read in line’ staple back when I was at Fan Expo.) Also keeping up with Team Ambitious, the Odyssey class of 2013’s online critique circles project. Back when I was in New Hampshire, doing two critiques a day didn’t seem like a lot. Now, with a full-time job, getting two finished in two weeks can loom large.
I’m back to the ‘How to Think Sideways’ course again, working on my Song Rater app for Android, (that’s going pretty well, except that my Singleton appears to be losing data!) still reading slush for James Gunn’s Ad Astra, and I finally mailed off a cheque for my tenant’s insurance. Oh, and I think I’ve managed to fight off an ear canal infection with the help of some over-the-counter meds. Fun stuff. 😉
Okay, it’s been a while since I did a drawing post, which is good, because it means I’ve got a lotta pictures to show you. All of these were ‘negative space drawings’ – a technique where you focus on the empty space around the object that’s actually there – because the logical left side of your brain is bored by empty space and doesn’t know what mental category to bucket it into, so it bugs out and lets the right side draw what it sees – or so the theory goes.
After a little back and forth, I started with an exercise where you draw a chair based on a photograph. The workbook suggested cutting one out of a magazine or newspaper – I used Google Image Search and decided to work with this:
And here’s my negative space version. I toned most of the page with a graphite stick before I started drawing and erased everything but the ‘negative space’ when I was done.
I’ve got nothing big to blog about today, so I’m just going to quickly share a few things that have been going on in my life and writing lately:
- Finally got the car back today! When I took it in for collision repair on Tuesday morning, I was hoping I’d be able to pick it up Wednesday evening, but what with the somewhat wet weather they didn’t get the paint dry until this morning. It’s so pretty though! And it was interesting to go through a few days without having access to the car–I’ve been relying on it more and more lately, especially being able to use it when I have appointments or the weather is bad. Instead, I had to struggle with public transit through one day with messy weather, and one day with a dental filling in the afternoon, sigh.
- I got my last summer workshop application sent in: Synopsis and sample pages of “The Gnomes are Missing” emailed to Kij Johnson for the CSSF Novel writer’s program. I’m looking forward to hearing back from all my workshop opportunities, and big thanks to Rinelle and Elizabeth Twist for critiquing my synopsis several times and making it much better!
- The final revision pass of “Won’t somebody think of the children?” is finally done; one day late, compared to my target, but there was a lot to do, especially taming my crazy punctuation. I have a tendency to use a ‘space hyphen space’ combination in my writing for a brief pause, and in fact I used it twice by this point in the post, but went back and changed them. Because that is a combination that is wrong according to every style authority I can find, I’m putting myself on a zero tolerance program for it in my revisions; I can use proper M-dashes, I can use colons or semicolons or commas or periods or ellipses, but no hyphens as pauses. So I started off NaNoEdMo this evening by fixing a few hundred hyphens-as-pauses from ‘Children.’ I’ll be sending off the completed draft to two critters.org critiquers in the morning.
- I’m really pleased with my progress in my ‘February month of drawing.’ I still have a few sketches to share with you, more negative space stuff, (a basketball pose and a chair from life,) but I haven’t taken the workbook in to work to scan them yet, so hopefully that’ll be Monday evening.
- Didn’t do so well with ‘How to Think Sideways’ – I got started on lesson 1, but didn’t have time to finish it, and it might be a while before I get back to it, what with NaNoEdMo and Camp Nanowrimo and what-have you.
- I may be loaning the Kindle to my mom, because she’s been wondering about getting an E-reader of her own. It’ll be odd not having it around for a week or so, but I’m happy to help. 🙂
- And it’s only a week until the Trek TNG reunion Comicon in Toronto! I’m not hugely excited for this one, because money’s tight and I’m a bit tired of the high prices, but I’ll be heading in for Saturday, checking out a few Q&As, and looking for Buffy season 9 graphic novels.
So – what’s up with you lately? How’ve ya been?
But I’ve still got nearly a week to draw my heart out! 😉
Earlier in the week, I was continuing with observational sketches using the plastic picture plane. I showed you a photograph last time of the picture plane with my hand holding a flash drive. Here’s the final sketch result. My fingers didn’t come out perfect, but I think I’m showing some progress:
Next, I did a still life of an apple with the picture plane, and I went back to toning my drawing paper with the charcoal stick: Read the rest of this entry »
Are you sick and tired of seeing my pictures and hearing me ramble on about the right side of the brain yet? I hope not, ’cause here comes some more. 😀
Well, since Saturday, I’ve done quite a bit with some very complicated Contour Drawing exercises. The overall recipe goes something like this:
- Draw a horizontal and vertical axis onto the paper to match the plastic picture plane.
- Take the graphite stick that I bought at Curry’s art store and rub it over the paper to ‘tone’ it to a shade of dark silver or light gray. Use a paper towel to rub away any extra graphite.
- Use the plastic picture plane to get an outline of the subject I want to draw, in temporary marker, keeping only one eye open to avoid stereoscopic confusion.
- Put the plastic picture plane against a white paper background to see the lines clearly, and copy the marks onto the paper in pencil as well as I can.
- Then return to the original subject, from as close to the original perspective as possible, and refine or add detail to the pencil drawing as much as possible. Use the one-eye technique again.
It’s been very interesting. For the first go-round, I did another marker outline of my hand:
And from that, I made the toned drawing like this:
Okay, the drawing stuff is still going well, and I hope you’ll enjoy the artistic masterpieces that I can share with you. 😉
When I left off last time, I was in the middle of working through the “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” chapter on the development of drawing skill in young children. The section on the landscape drawing stage talks a lot about a typical scene that many children return to draw again and again, and Betty encouraged the reader to remember that picture and draw it again. I’m still not sure if I remember a scene that I actually drew as a child, but after thinking about my childhood and the sort of things that were typically in childhood landscapes, I drew this:
Later in the chapter, Betty talked about the difficulties of moving on to ‘realistic’ drawing and the paradoxes of perspective, with examples about how it’s impossible to draw a recognizable cube with square shapes, because the squares get distorted into other shapes via perspective. (Unless you’re just looking at one face of the cube head on, in which case it’s a square, but you can’t tell that there’s any more to the shape than one square.)
So I wanted to try sketching a cubic die, and several other platonic dice. Luckily I still had a few, though I’ve thrown out most of my collection of RPG dice:
After that, I moved on to a new chapter, full of really interesting and weird drawing assignments. The first one involved tracing the lines on your palm, moving the pencil as you moved your eyes – but you were supposed to keep your head turned away from the paper that you were drawing on, so the results weren’t supposed to be a realistic picture of your palm, just a window into the process. So here’s the ‘drawing’ I made of my palm: Read the rest of this entry »
Okay, well, as I finished my last post about drawing, I’d just gotten up to the first upside-down drawing exercise I did, where I copied somebody else’s pencil sketch by turning it upside down and uncovering it a bit at a time. The idea of this, according to Betty Edwards, is to confuse your literate and specific left brain by drawing something that it can’t assign a label to, so that your right brain is free to draw what you actually see.
When I started off February drawing month, I started off with several more upside down drawings. First, one that I think really came out well, was of a horsey:
I didn’t mean to have the head and tail go off the edge of the page like that – I’m still having some issues with judging distances, so I ran out of room. Still – nice horsey! The next one was a horse and rider, and I’m not so wild about it: Read the rest of this entry »