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Author   Topic : "Increasing skills?"
Daijoobu
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Joined: 05 Jan 2001
Posts: 132
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2001 7:10 am     Reply with quote
Hi everyone
I've been lurking these forums for ahwile now
and I decided to join you and share my wisdom among you =)

Now, I have some questions:
What should you do to increase your drawing skills? Of course I'm aware that the obvious answer to this question is ractice.
But how and what should you practice?
I'm practicing drawing people and faces using
photos for reference. Is this good/bad?
I feel that I'm beginning to get the hang of that,so whats the "next" step?
And why is it that people tend to degrade pictures made with photo-references while a
picture made with a live model is a "portrait"?
Is there any other way of increasing your drawing skills (that is,any other way of practicing)?
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Sumaleth
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Joined: 30 Oct 1999
Posts: 2835
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2001 7:36 am     Reply with quote
Practice is easily the biggest thing that will help you get good, but you still need to think about what you're doing. If you make the same mistakes over and over again you'll be practicing, but not really getting anywhere.

So becoming a good artist is also a lot about teaching your brain. This does come naturally through just drawing a lot, but you can certainly speed up the process but really thinking about what works and what doesn't.

Studying the work of good artists is another way to progress speedily. Early on this might mean literally copying someone elses work as closely as you can (not socially good, but you do learn a lot - best to keep them to yourself unless you're in the demo scene..), and later it'll mean studying the images. But to know what to look for requires that you've already been trying to do similar images, so that you know what to look for.

Reading is another way to make quicker progress. It'll never replace really drawing, but there's a hell of a lot that you can learn just by reading books. But keep in mind that *all* books are only vague guides, almost like bicycle training wheels, and once you've come to understand the so-called 'rules' (really a bad word, they are more like 'hints') it's possible to completely break them and still produce good art. But they do help learning artists.

What to draw? Anything I guess. Figure drawing is a great task to keep up, just because figures are such a big part of many images and they're hard to draw, but you need to do color images to learn color, you need to do composed images to learn composition, etc.

Row.
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Slicer
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Joined: 03 Mar 2000
Posts: 187
Location: Sala, Sweden

PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2001 1:24 pm     Reply with quote
Ok, well I have been doing and is still trying some poses and learning anatomi. But I havent found any good pictures for the other things. You have any idea where I can get some?
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Daijoobu
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Joined: 05 Jan 2001
Posts: 132
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2001 5:24 pm     Reply with quote
ok,but how about using photos for reference?
Is it for some reason better to use a live model? I get the feeling that a picture made
using a photoreference is "worth" less than
a picture made from life...
Thats the impression I've got from reading
the posts in these forums, anyway.
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Daijoobu
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Joined: 05 Jan 2001
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Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2001 12:31 am     Reply with quote
hmm ok
You've given me something to think about.
thanks alot for taking the time answering my
questions!
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Zeno
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Joined: 14 Dec 2000
Posts: 28
Location: St Aug. , FL US

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2001 12:38 am     Reply with quote
Daijoobu::

There is nothing wrong with using a photo as reference, especially when you are learning (as I am, like yourself). There is a lot to be learned by studying and drawing photographs as well as real life. Don't limit yourself when you are learning, but remember not to get stuck doing the same thing. I will shut up now and let some one with a bit more experience elaborate further on this subject.
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Strukture
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Joined: 25 Dec 2000
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Location: Chicago IL

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2001 12:51 am     Reply with quote
Read everything educational that relates to the art you want to do. It gives you a great understanding and makes you less ignorant on the concepts of art. I also find it help to sketch things I see in magazines, pictures, or just things in real life. Eventually you will have a big grasp of things by these methods, and maybe a great artist. Nothing is guaranteed though.
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Alloy
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Joined: 28 Dec 2000
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Location: Dallas, TX, USA

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2001 1:09 am     Reply with quote
Since drawing is more about being able to see, than draw, I think starting with photo references is a great way to start. i mean, not many artists start out instantly knowing how to correct the way we see things and by constantly looking at photos or other pictures and making a serious attempt to reproduce them, you will really start to get a feel for how things should look...as well as how to produce that.

Other things that really help a beginning artist: at least this helped me...is try to do some quick paintings...give yourself a time limit of sorts, this forces you to see and put things together quicker. Loosens you up and helps you see the more basic structures/shadings of various objects.

Other things that a beginning artist can try, to train their eye is paint something upside down...this helps break down the barrier between what we "think" we see, and what is actually there.

I'm still a newbie myself, but i've noticed that by following these few things, my skills have really improved at a much faster rate than when I first started and knew nothing.

At some point, picture references will not be necessary. Try drawing something you see in the physical world...this will be much harder, because you're taking a 3d field, and trying to draw it on a 2d medium. But, great practice none the less.

Enough rambling...hope this helps .

------------------
Alloy(Jim Rose)
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Alloy
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Joined: 28 Dec 2000
Posts: 71
Location: Dallas, TX, USA

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2001 1:10 am     Reply with quote
er...damn double post :/

[This message has been edited by Alloy (edited January 06, 2001).]
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Daijoobu
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Joined: 05 Jan 2001
Posts: 132
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2001 4:34 am     Reply with quote
Alloy:
I will certainly take your points into
concideration, thanks.

The downside of using a wacom tablet is that
you'd need a laptop to make it portable thus
making it harder to draw things from real life...
well maybe I'll have to go back to the old pen and paper once in a while too
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Quinnbeast
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Joined: 31 Dec 2000
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Location: Aberdeen, Scotland, UK

PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2001 7:06 am     Reply with quote
Just to continue a few points…

Using photos is a reasonable way to get started, but you might want to have a rummage round for some well-illustrated anatomy books as well, which will help in understanding the body in a 3 dimensional way.

When you draw a person form a photo, you are drawing a shape rather than a form (i.e. 2D/3D), and it's often harder to create a sense of depth or solidity because of this. When drawing from life you can emphasise whether, say, an arm is coming towards you or going away from by the weight of line/tone/whatever, but it doesn't look as convincing from a photograph because you can't view the person from different angles and you loose the perspective.

Just as an example, go to a train station or an airport and find a view with a really awkward perspective. A piece done from photograph will be far easier because all the perspective lines are there for you to copy rather than working them out for yourself - *but*.. you get a much greater understanding of space if drawn accurately from life. This is not quite as obvious with life drawing, but the subject matter is not as different as you might think since every object has form and perspective etc.

But, getting back to your question (I'm good at rambling ), you'll be fine using photos as a starting point, but sooner or later you'll need to move on to some life drawing as you’ll be surprised how much improvement it will make, but also how much harder it is

- Quinnbeast



[This message has been edited by Quinnbeast (edited January 08, 2001).]
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Daijoobu
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Joined: 05 Jan 2001
Posts: 132
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2001 7:07 am     Reply with quote
Thank you all of you, you've been very helpful!
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