Fantasy Art

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Reference Photos

    At the beginning of every life drawing session we do a few three minute gesture sketches which are usually the most dynamic poses, and therefore the most fun for me   But they're hard for the model to hold for a long time so we have to keep them short.  Once the drawing is at home you kind of feel inclined to toss it out because it's not a very good or detailed drawing.  But at the same time it does have great movement and feeling and so you'd kind of like to keep it.
   For this reason I take photos whenever the model allows it because I know I will use the photo as a reference and finish these drawings later.  In fact it's the long poses that I'm more likely to toss out because they are often stiff and uninteresting.
It's also a good idea to zoom in and get a close-up of problem areas which for me are hands and feet.     Not only do I struggle with getting them to look right, but I often can't see them that well at a distance, and my long shot photo doesn't pick up much detail.  I just use the camera on my cell phone.

   Many Life drawing groups, teachers and models consider it scandalously inappropriate to take photos or even to ask so whenever I go to other venues I have to tread pretty lightly on this subject.
I actually started to do it at the model's request, but I always ask, it's just not safe to assume.

3 minute sketch in the classroom.
This might look like an easy pose and for three minutes it probably was easy, but it would be awfully rough on the model's knees to do this for a couple hours.

Perhaps another 20 minutes at home looking at the photo. 

There's two things that an imaginative artist could do with this stick.  One is to imagine it as some kind of tool or weapon and tailor the rest of the drawing to fit that idea.
The other is to erase the stick or never draw it in the first place.  Now she could be combing her hair or talking on the phone.  It's your drawing make it do what you want it to do.

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