In order to effectively shade form, you first need to understand the form you’re shading. In the structure video I talked about the basic building blocks of form – spheres, cylinders and boxes. Organic forms found in nature, like humans, animals and trees could and should be constructed from these simple forms to capture the character of the subject.
Being able to successfully manipulate your pencil is an important part of line drawing and shading. You’ll learn about the “Tripod Grip”, “Overhand Grip”, using your wrist vs. your shoulder, and how to use various parts of the pencil to control line weight.
Being able to see accurate shape is one of the most useful skills of an artist. To train your eyes you have to practice a lot. But you also need to practicing correctly. For that you have to have a feedback loop. A way of checking your drawings for mistakes.
Robert Beverly Hale used the size of the cranium as the unit for measuring human proportions instead of the height of the head. This method is preferred by many artists because it aligns with skeletal landmarks and it is more reliable when actually drawing a figure in a pose.
Dr. Paul Richer’s “Artistic Anatomy” presents a scientific system for an average European male as measured by Anthropologists. He uses the height of the head as 1 unit and says that the average person is 7.5 heads tall. In this video we explore his method of measuring proportions of the human body.
Throughout history artists have depicted the human form not as the average, but as the ideal. We find beauty and grace in length. So, in artwork, it’s more common for figures to be 8 or more heads tall rather than 7.5. Let’s take a looks at Loomis’ Ideal Proportions.