Nearly there: Sight size 5

Week five of the sight-size drawing course. More working on the form and volume, expressed with just the light and dark of the pencil.

This is totally absorbing. Time flies… Have we really only got one more day of this? I could spend forever doing this…

Out of the grey, into the dark: Sight size 4

Starting at the top of the head, and working down. Adding dark and light to the head. The form starts to emerge.

Now it starts to make sense: I start to see why the earlier stage took so long. Making sure they were correct makes this stage easier (relatively!): the shape, size, and midtone are in place, so now “all” I have to worry about is the form and volume.

Get fit and draw: Sight size 1

Off to the London Atelier of Representational Art to learn “sight size drawing”. One day a week for six weeks. Six hours a day. That’ll be thirty six hours working on one drawing.

Here’s the result after six hours on the first day.

Pencil on paper, A2.

What we did this week: Draw the envelope, a polygon of about six sides that encompasses the entire shape. Then refine each six, moving slowly towards a more accurate outline. The idea being that you get each stage right, before moving on the next.
There was lots of standing well back from the easel, at the point where the model and the image appear the same size. Then measure model against drawing. Walk up to the easel; make one mark; walk back to the starting point; check the mark against the model. They say you walk about five miles in a day doing this.

Watching the detective

A nice twist to our usual life drawing poses: the model was dressed in trenchcoat and hat, giving a Forties’ detective feel.

Life drawing

Life drawing

This is the same pose as the first drawing, drawn immediately after it, but the model seems to have slumped a bit — or I got the proportions wrong.

Life drawing

Another pose. Lots of linework with a hard pencil and a soft pencil; smudging to create tone; and then lifting out the lights with a putty rubber.

It makes an interesting change to draw a clothed model: there’s a suggestion of a story; a reason why the model is there.

Each pencil on paper, approx A3.