Flatness
2yr
Becca
Hi everyone, I’ve been trying to draw seriously for about 2 months, and I’ve been practicing heads. I know I have a lot to learn still, and I think the most obvious problem is with proportions, but I’m actually trying to figure out why they all look kind of flat and what I can practice to work on that flatness problem. I think it has something to do with getting the values right? Or maybe it’s a construction problem? I start them with the Loomis method. Here are some examples and the references, all of which came from Pinterest.  I’ve noticed this flatness problem in my drawings of other things, too (attempts at figures, objects around the house, etc.). I’m doing Drawabox too, and I’m at the 250 boxes exercise - in case that’s helpful to know. Thanks so much.
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adzukirin
Amazing artworks! I highly suggest that you should use the Loomis head method. Placing guidelines along the head to pinpoint the location of the facial features are would help with your proportions. Also, play with different angles and perspectives! I think that using simple shapes and limited planes first on the head would really help while doing basic shadow and light exercises. Start off simple and don't focus on too much details, that can come later.
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Serena Marenco
Hi Becca, for now, don't worry about volume but focus on shape and construction of the face and proportions. As with figure drawing, it's best to take one step at a time, and you'll see that when you manage to build the face correctly, with proportions and planes, your drawings will no longer appear flat, even if you don't apply shadows. :)
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Becca
Super helpful, thanks.
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Bryan Merton
These are really great first efforts! Draw A Box was excellent for me to get perspective right. The 250 box challenge was long but really helped. Drawing every day helps and putting in lots of time!
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John Harper
I've been drawing seriously for about 7 years and I still don't have the kind of three dimensionality that I want. Enjoy art, be happy, and keep moving forward. I think about Bob Ross, who had happy little trees and mistakes. He was a great example of how we should look at art.
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Becca
Thanks so much, Bryan. The exercise of posting these has made me start to think about at what point it is appropriate to ask for feedback. I know what level I’m at and don’t really want to bother because there is still so much to learn, but I keep reading about how important it is to get critiques. I wonder if I shouldn’t wait until I have a little more skill first. But I very much appreciate the encouragement, and I’m really enjoying myself.
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Ross Cline
HI Brecca, I have been looking at your pictures and I think you need to punch up the core shadows in order to create a greater sense of Depth. For instance, take the image of the woman with the short black hair. The shadow just under her jawline is darkest at the point where the neck meets the jaw. And just above the jaw is a reflected light that creates a border. These two effects work together to give the impression of depth. To learn more about shading and how to create depth check out Dorian Iten's great lessons on shading. watch his Youtube video and you will learn a whole lot.
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Becca
Thanks, Ross. I’ve seen the video, but I’ll watch it again. I can see what you mean about core shadows - in all of these. Honestly, I’m so new to this and there are so many problems to solve, that I’m just really happy to have someone help me identify somewhere to focus. I appreciate the feedback. 😊
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pfro
2yr
The angles and measurements are off. Try working on just one of those photos, concentrating on getting all the features blocked in before you do any shading. Post that sketch so you can get feed back sooner. Watch more then just the beginning videos on the Loomis Method, there is a great deal of info about angles and measuring of the features that will help you.
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Becca
Thanks, yes, there are a lot of proportion and measuring issues. I’m only 2 months in, so I think that will come with more practice. I’m working on it. Slowly. Thanks for the feedback.
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