Anfissa; I could have written this myself. I study a lot of the time and I have developed a method to get max results in my own way. I go through the info quickly (x2 on videos) just to see the shape of the lesson. Then I set a timer for 25 minutes. That is my personal limit, at least right now. I do the best I can to watch and take notes limiting the number of times I stop the video to write. I know the urge is to "get" all the secrets and be able to capture it, but as has been said dozens of times above, it is hand/paper/pencil practice and nothing else. Just like reading about playing the piano or surfing. After my timer goes off I go do something else for 5-10 minutes. The (this is the secret sauce for me) I come back and re-read my notes from the beginning, annotating them if necessary (it always is). Then it is close the book, do the drill. Stan always has a source figure, or you can get one anywhere. Draw the thing, not well but fast. Like 10 of them, for practice. Only do that for another half hour. Then stop. Then toss all your practice. Right before bed, do the same drawing - 5 minutes. Do it again the next day. And then next night. I don't know if you are like me, but I bought every book in existence thinking I was going to buy the skill. Nope. It is a matter of practicing scales. Drawings, over and over. Copy some from Stan, then do them yourself. Give yourself a critique the next day but only by pointing out things that are actionable - Like, features not symmetrical, or arms too long or something. Drawings are never bad, they are practice. Good on you for having the guts to admit to notes-itis! You have a lot of company!
Stan; I am a doctor, and I originally took a Life Drawing class in college with the idea that I'd learn enough to draw diagram-type pictures for my patients. Well, no, I learned to be even more embarrassed of my work than before. I am stubborn though, and kept drawing with not a lot of progress for...decades. Several of them. One thing I found with drawing human figures is the appreciation for any configuration of body parts that works! People get around with the strangest posture and movement! The ability to move, balance, sit/stand/walk just floors me with its grace and precision, even when we slip an extra 5-75 pounds on a skeleton not designed for that. I plan to dedicate my allegiance to Proko 2.0 by rededicating to daily practice of drawing and asking for feedback! That is the missing piece, you are SO right! Along with the community part because we are all more social than we like to admit sometimes. I would like a drawing group, with some loving accountability. Is there a mechanism to have that happen? There is SO MUCH on this new website maybe I missed that. Let me say again how much I appreciate your work, how inspiring you are and what a spectacular website with you and your fellow experts! I am grateful. Lila
Art; Good on you for tackling such a weirdo pose! This is so lovely, with the line drawing lacking any shading, it really has a great deal of correctness with a very few little deviations. Head is too big. Curve of torso slightly off, and that makes the torso less balanced than in the photo. Rib cage is smashed into iliac crest on the right and on the left, the angle below bottom rib is more acute than photo. As has been said, left foot needs to be planted on the ground, not on tippy-toes showing all the toes in same perspective. Negative spaces so carefully done they mostly match except the angle of the spear. Yours is tipped at more of an angle relative to photo. Right hand is slid out toward the butt of the spear more than photo. Entire right leg looks too muscular to me but I was thinking that was due to the careful line drawing without shadows to quickly tell the picture plane. But, even looking again, it seems the right leg is just too wide. Lower leg on right looks perfect, but thigh is showing different curve. With the gesture so correct, it masquerades as perfect, but it still is sort of...not. I believe the photo shows a more convex curve on the left side of the torso and that is where the gesture goes haywire. Pit of throat on your guy is back further than photo, which leaves it looking balanced, but not the same as photo, where balance point is more forward. This is JUST because you asked, and different set of eyes and all that...I think you captured the majority of this living pose, and other than size of head, your drawing works. I share your wish to improve and feedback is the breakfast of champions, for that. Without direct feedback, my eyes just gloss over my many, many mistakes. Even when I am looking to improve the faithful capture of the figure, or face and the tiniest little angle-goof is glaringly obvious to someone else, I won't see it. I'm looking forward to feedback myself. You got so many areas spot on, in such a twisty-spiral pose! What happened to the hands? Did you get bored with them? Beautiful work, really.