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Shape: By focusing on the shapes of the objects (and more importantly the shapes between the objects) you can view subjects with a whole new outlook and focus.
Simplicity: You'll get better results by concentrating on simple subjects and drawing techniques that will still prove powerful when used together.
Structure: A structured approach makes drawing easier to master.
Each chapter in this course is built on these three principles, combining drawing theory and practical examples with worksheets and drawing assignments. Will Kemp brings his passion for teaching and infectious love of drawing together in these lessons. You'll learn about line, value, tone, negative space, and perspective, and come away with the confidence to start making drawing a daily practice.
This course was created and produced by Will Kemp. We're honored to host this training in our library.
- Materials you need to draw
- Drawing theory
- Framing your composition
- Using the picture plane
- Creating contrast
- Using negative space to create more powerful compositions
- Creating form from shadows and light
Skill Level Beginner
So what I've got here is a photographic reference, the way they do a negative space drawing from. Do you notice what I've got on the page are some cross hairs that's I've just lightly drawn onto the frame, and this is going to help us with the actual drawing? I've also drawn these cross hairs onto the picture plane. You can use the cross hairs just with a non permanent marker or a permanent marker, if you really want to make sure that you can rub out your drawings, your future drawings you do on it. I have also drawn the inside of the frame on here, so this way you can just line up with the actual drawing and line up with the reference phase graph.
So as you've learned, the negative spaces are the spaces in between the actual object. We're just going to focus in on that. So instead of having the whole flower, we're going to focus in on a more detailed area. And then to simplify it a bit more so, we haven't got the distraction of the color, we've then just got a black and white image that you can work from. So ideally you'd work from this, the full color image, but it's easy when you're first starting just to work from a black and white image, this scale.
So, you can get used to the principles on it, and then you can start to apply it to other drawings that you create. So I've got an HB pencil and a 7B pencil for this demonstration. The HB is going to be great filling very fine lines and the 7B just for shading in those areas, so it just get that nice contrast between the darks and the lights in the drawing. So I'm just going to choose one of the spaces to start off the drawing. So, the first one I'm going to look at this space here. Between the flowers. So I'm just jump my arm across and just try to, again, estimate what the gap is between there and there to start the drawing off.
And again, the here to here. So you can work quite lightly to start with, because we're just going to check it before we carry on with the drawing. You'll find your tendency is to really want to try and focus in on the flower, focus in on all these shaded areas. But, you've really just gotta get used to focusing on this shape. Okay, so once you've got the first shape drawn in quite lightly, now we can just check it using the picture plane. If you just line up the picture plane, with your reference photograph, and I'm just using quite a wide non permanent marker.
Just so you can actually see it on camera. But when your working if you want you can use a finer line. So once I've got this shape on to here, I can now bring it across to my actual drawing. Line it up and start to see which parts are lined up, and which parts are out. So the. This bottom half of mine. That's looking okay. That's lined up nicely there. That's on there nicely. It's just this top half. It sweeps down here. But then I've made it too big. I've over exaggerated it.
So if I just change that slightly. And then just erase back that line. Then just check the shape again. So now once I've got that one shape that I'm really happy with, I can now jump to the next shape. It's not a jigsaw puzzle really, you're just looking for the next nearest shape that, and it looks like an easy one to go for, so you can start to build up a picture. And then if you want to, you can line that up again. Draw the next shape, and I just do this for a couple of them.
Just so that you feel confident in the first. Couple of shapes that you've put on. And that's not looking too bad, that can maybe come down a slight angle. Okay that's great. And now for the rest of drawing, I can start to build up the drawing and not reference the picture plane as much. Because then you'll really start to develop your eye, and your observation of the shapes that we're looking at. Then if you get to a stage and you can start to look back at the lines and say. Let's look at this bottom half, it's looking okay, that's looking quite nice.
These shapes we know we've checked before, the top half, the shapes looking okay, but it's looking like this has maybe a bit too wide. You know it's gotten a bit to fat that shape, it needs to be brought down a bit. So then you can get just check here with your picture plane. And say, yeah this line across here is working okay. But, I've definitely come down too much there. So I can just tweak that down and just move that closer together. And that's feeling a lot more balanced on that side of the drawing. You'll find when you get to these areas where you've got such a dominant flower in the actual scene, it's even harder for you to not concentrate on the flower and just try and concentrate on the actual shape.
Just as with the upside down drawing. The more abstract it is, the easier it is for you to draw it, the closer it becomes, like this flower coming into reality at you. The easier it is for your brain to try to help you out, to try and draw the actual object. So now once you've got your line drawing out, you can start to check again and use your picture pane if you'd like to just double check the lines, see how far you are out. And then we can start to do, is to pick one of the shapes, and choosing a softer pencil, like the 7B.
Just shade it in really dark and you gotta make sure you go right up to that edge and that's just because you want to go really clean line. If you shade something, say, if I was shading out to this edge and I left all these little jagged lines what that would is inadvertently create a new shape. So, what you gotta make sure you when you shade it in is go right to the edge? So you've just got that nice clean dark line.
And you can always swap back to the HB, if you really want to get it, really super, super fine edge. What you'll start to find now, is that when these shapes start to be shaded in, and the darker you go, the easier it will be to see it. You'll start to see these positive forms of the actual flowers, coming out at you. So what I'm going to do now is just continue on the rest of the drawing, just to shade it in really dark, and then you'll start to see the nice clean shape of the flower emerging.
Just before that, you can take out cross hairs. Just say you've got nice, clean shapes. And then we can just shade that all in. So now you can see your image as a whole. You can start to tweak any shapes that look slightly out. Going in with a harder pencil, and really just going over it again until you get really nice dark effect on the drawing.