Heads, hands, and feet – from Aristides atelier

When I copied this on Page 71/72 or Juliette Aristides’ book Figure Drawing Atelier (Monacelli Studio, 2019), I thought I was drawing an abstracted, blocky, illustrative figure of bare bones simplicity and I was totally taken aback by what came next: This: The shaping is provided in the book as an under-drawing; the task is to render the shade which is not. This plays to my strengths which rely more on reductive than additive drawing. I find I prefer to shade and finger-blend several layers of graphite (pencil) then dab away with a putty rubber to remove some, add some … Continue reading Heads, hands, and feet – from Aristides atelier

Figure drawing atelier – volume

This section contains some exercises using cubic simplifications of bodies to get a feel of volume. For some reason, these just throw me in that I find the detachment from a whole figure confusing and unrelatable. I skipped those and went on to a copy of an actual figure, this one by Geoffrey FlackĀ  (2015). Mine is in graphite pencil and again I found some success with the gridding. I’m particularly pleased with the angle of the head but oh that hand! I think I might resort to photographing the original and zooming in on-screen so I can actually see … Continue reading Figure drawing atelier – volume

Figure Drawing Atelier

My second adventure with Juliette Aristides’ beautiful books. This one focuses, as the title suggests, on figure drawing and although I’m resisting life drawing where only nude models are available, I am prepared to work through this book as I did with the previous one in order to build skills. For my first trick, I seem to have drawn a naked Stormtrooper. Graphite pencil and putty rubber. This is probably my first moderately successful gridding effort. Usually, I find myself lost in the lines but this time I seem to have focused in on the right areas for the right … Continue reading Figure Drawing Atelier

Book review: Beginning Drawing Atelier – an instructional sketchbook by Juliette Aristides

  This is a work book – guidelines, exercises, drawings to copy and a page next to each to do that. I have never copied other people’s work or tried for the photorealism some artists specialise in making so this was quite a challenge. Add to that the realisation not long ago that lefthanders make their marks in entirely the opposite direction to righthanders and I could see this was not going to be easy. Fortunately, the quality of the images to be copied – there are two da Vinci’s! – makes it clear that perfection is really not the … Continue reading Book review: Beginning Drawing Atelier – an instructional sketchbook by Juliette Aristides

Atelier drawings – portrait 3, da Vinci

Before: ending on a high here! The portrait to copy is Leonardo da Vinci’s Study of a Young Woman (1490) and appropriately but probably coincidentally, it is positioned on the right of the book so that the page where the copy is to be made is on the left. This means I can actually see the image I am working with instead of obscuring it with my drawing arm. The arrangement would not have been lost on da Vinci, a reputed left hander. After: so, that went well! There’s a reason da Vinci is a Master; he makes the complicated … Continue reading Atelier drawings – portrait 3, da Vinci

Atelier drawings, portrait 2 -Los Infantes II

The original by Irvin Rodriguez (2016) is in ink on Hahnemuhle Copperplate paper, mine is in pencil and conte on the page in the book and I really struggled with this. The angle of the head, the ‘baby’ features (mine looks a little older, less chubby) and the expression. Every correction brought another problem and eventually I came close to running out of road trying to erase where there was little leeway to do so. What I’ve learned though is that despite all these difficulties and a few oddities of proportion, if the original were not to hand – and … Continue reading Atelier drawings, portrait 2 -Los Infantes II

Atelier drawings – portrait 1, ‘Jamaal’

This felt very much like jumping in at the deep end despite completing the run-up exercises. I find blocking-in quite tricky with the examples hard to transfer to new material; too many lines seem to scramble my brain and I lose the ends of them and their position in space. Maybe practice will improve that but for now I have used some of the guiding instructions alongside my own more intuitive grasp of shape and position. The result is a portrait of a passable woman who should actually be a young man. In my defence, the small drawing above mine, … Continue reading Atelier drawings – portrait 1, ‘Jamaal’