Figure Study

August 22, 2009


It’s been awhile since I have devoted serious time to studying the figure, doing still life, or depicting landscapes and backgrounds. This is probably one of the longest times I’ve gone without going back to the basics of drawing and I feel that this has caused me to lose my edge. My drawings are not flowing from me- the process feels forced and tedious. So I’m going step back from style and practice realism for now. Some time will be devoted to gesture drawing in particular to gain my confidence back in making marks on the paper. Right now I’ve gone back to the bad habit of doubting what I put on paper and end up erasing it several times, in effect killing the life of the drawing and turning it into something dull and boring.

I really want to go back over my figure drawing abilities and brush up on my knowledge of anatomy. One problem that I am having is figuring out how to apply what I know about human anatomy and translating that into a manga/comic book style. It’s easier for me to draw the human body realistically, with plenty of shading and detail, than to strip it down and try to express the same idea in a much simpler style. How do you depict the figure convincingly without the aid of all those details? I’m still trying to figure that out.

I think it’s important to go back over the basics of drawing and redo some of those exercises we either learned in school or on our own from the local library/bookstore. When you are able to successfully draw according the rules again and realize that you still have that ability to fall back on, it can be a real boost to your self-confidence as an artist. It seems that way to me, anyway.


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