Form and Geometry in Figure Drawing


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Using geometric shapes to simplify blocking in a drawing of the figure.

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  • Form and Geometry in Figure Drawing

    1. 1. FORMUsing Geometric Elements in figure drawing<br />Honoria Starbuck<br />For Life Drawing<br />Art Institute of Austin<br />
    2. 2. Draw a few pages of cubes to get started. <br />Turn off overhead lights. <br />Shine a flashlight on a box and draw!<br />Jeff Jackson<br /><br />
    3. 3. Next play with warping and twisting cubic forms to help you see shapes on the figure.<br /><br />Mathematics and Art<br />...well artists have more possibilities and their cubes take adventurous forms... Načeradsky's sketches <br />
    4. 4. Blocking in the gesture is a fun game when you are at an event or park.<br />Capture the light on people during the morning and late afternoon.<br /><br />
    5. 5. Analyze what the body masses are doing when a figure is in motion.<br />Hang out in a boxing gym and see if you can follow the punches.<br />Hang out at a rodeo and draw bucking broncos.<br />Hang out at a golf course and take a swing at drawing the drives.<br /><br />
    6. 6. Blocking with line first shows anatomical elements of head, ribcage pelvis with position of the spine.<br />Blocking with value first also shows the position of the axial skeleton – the skull, ribcage, pelvis with position of the spine.<br />Developing the shading and adding defining lines brings additional volume and anatomical detail to the figure.<br /><br />
    7. 7. Carve the figure out of geometric shapes and anatomical knowledge will help you to build structurally sound figures.<br />James King drawing at Hipbone Studio, Portland, Oregon<br /><br />
    8. 8. Tips on using planes to compose figures<br />Light the figure with form light.<br />Planes are revealed by the crest shadow, midtones, and highlights of light on the figure.<br />Ignore cast shadows on the figure but use them on the ground or background to give the drawing depth.<br />Use your anatomy book to verify your growing X-ray vision<br />Block in the planes based on light logic and anatomical structures.<br />Use lines for shapes OR use values for the shapes you block in. Using line or value, not both, will simplify your initial drawing.<br />When you have the forms blocked you may refine them by softening edges, blending, using watercolor, dry brush, ink wash, nuanced line, etc.<br />
    9. 9. Thank You<br />Thank you to all the artists living and dead whose work is posted on the Internet to use in building educational tools.<br />Links to source websites are on each slide for ease of finding more material connected to illustrations.<br />This presentation was created in response to a student request for more information on capturing form in life drawing. It is designed to be used in a life model drawing session in combination with active drawing and discussion.<br />