Categoría: Part 4

Part 4 The figure and the head

Project 6 The head Exercise 1 Facial Features

For this exercise I cut out various elements from magazines – mostly fashion type images and stuck them in my sketchbook. I then drew some elements before making a couple of head drawings based on my own head looking in a mirror.



Then I compared a few images of eyes drawn/painted by Picasso – the master of eyes and creativity….

What a variety of different styles and mediums! An example that there really is not limit – the limit is your own imagination.

My drawings of a couple of heads:

They were not big as I drew them in my A5 sketchbook.

The first in pencil and the second using Prismacolor marker pens. I then made a blind contour drawing of the same face:




Part 4 The figure and the head

Project 5 The Moving figure – Exercise 2 Groups of figures

People watching and sketching is something that I enjoy.  I cheated a little in this exercise a I have included recent drawing made ‘on the move’ in the airport and in the park:

In the airport…

It is surprising how much people move about even when the are patiently (or not so patiently) waiting in line – even the man on the phone kept moving about!

In the park…

The LH drawing was of a group of figures playing cards (A blind contour drawing) and the RH one of a family talking and moving around while preparing a BBQ.

In all of these drawings there was not perhaps sufficient information to make a finished drawing however it was good practice for life drawing – one to two minute sketches of models.

In ‘Experimental drawing’ there is a fascinating drawing in ink by Francesco Guardi:


Francesco Guardi (1712-1793) A Venetian Scene. Pen and sepia wash. 

I can just imagine him in the middle of a square, small sketchbook in hand making this exquisite drawing with a quill pen and brush. This was obviously quickly drawn but the angular perspective is very accurate and there is a sense of movement in the figures which draws you in to try and find out more from within the scene.

I will have to try something similar in pen and ink – as this is a medium that I enjoy using.




Part 4 The figure and the head

Part 4 The figure and the head

Project 5 The moving figure – Exercise 1 Single moving figure

There is nothing so joyful as to see a child in their imaginary world ignoring all around them….this was just such a moment….our two year old grand-daughter with a tutu dancing in front of a window bathed with sunlight which acted as a spotlight during her performance.

This was a major exercise for me and I was exhausted after drawing constantly for about 2 hours and then frustratingly editing the pictures in Adobe Photoshop and Premiere – Photoshop I was familiar with but I was using Premiere for the first time!

Obviously the influence was William Kentridge as I have watched his videos on YouTube many times, and studied his wonderfully illustrated book Fortune edited by Lilian Tone.

This was the moving figure – moving – not in quite the same way as Kentridge – as this video was really like a slide show but like Kentridge I was constantly editing the same picture. What remains is a series of captured images that are then stitched together in a movie.

Hands on hips, the little jump (not high enough), and the belly stuck out…I believe that I have captured the spirit of movement in this exercise.

Exhausting but well worth the effort!



Part 4 The figure and the head

Project 4 Structure – Exercise 1 The structure of the human body

For reference in this part of the course, I studied ‘Drawing the nude – Structure, anatomy and observation’ by Stuart Elliot and looked through Taschen’s book on Egon Schiele for inspiration on line:

Egon Schiele – Nude girl with black hair, standing (1910), Watercolour and pencil

This for me is a very delicate, emotional drawing – the girl has an innocent look, Schiele’s line of the hands, elbow, ribs LHS and hips uses skeletal landmarks and profiles to add life to his drawing.  The wash in the rib cage also adds more emphasis to the skeleton beneath the skin.

My own studies using parts of my own body were more successful than the few copies I made of other drawings:








Obviously, I need to keep practicing my line drawings and improve on my observational skills – this a lifetime of learning/practicing – but I have found an area of drawing that I enjoy: the figure and portraits.

Exercise 2 – Three figure drawings

I used my own body for these drawings and instead of drawing three poses as in the exercise brief, I chose to make a standing pose – nude, and then a series of seated poses semi-nude:


Male nude standing, Graphite on mylar (105x75cm)


Working from life is certainly very different from using photos or internet videos. Its a shame that I could not find a life class nearby.

I used both shading and line to emphasize form, skeletal outlines/profiles and with hindsight noticed that my left shoulder was drawn too large and that my left knee was too low. In general I was happy with the drawing and especially liked the effect of the large graphite block on mylar.  To improve the drawing further, I could have corrected some of the lines and improved upon the shading/tonal contrast.

My second drawing was in fact three versions of me sitting down at my easel on a high stool – an idea that came from the earlier pencil sketch – see above:

Seated male – semi nude, Black acrylic ink and pencil on fabriano paper. 105x75cm

The centre drawing was made using my left hand to make the initial outlines in pencil. I  found that making these drawings was a little awkward as it was difficult to keep my hand moving – drawing – and maintaining the poses. It would obviously be easier with a live model in front of me.

Detail to show pencil outlines of neck and arm


Detail of RH figure



Whilst the structure, pose, form and weight were satisfactory and did in fact (as commented by my wife) represent me – I was too heavy in my use of ink. In some places it could have been omitted and left as just pencil line, or I could have been more careful in the tone and weight of line – a big challenge ahead!