The Experiment

3:34 PM

Last week I mentioned that Joey and I were going to be posting an experiment here on Wednesdays.  Well, today is the first Wednesday and the kick-off to our little project.  Joey is being a wonderful sport in offering his time and patience, as well as providing his artistic talents for the effort.  So, thank you Joey for participating... I will definitely return the favor!

The Drawing Experiment... 

  1. The motive for this project:  I can't stand the word CAN'T.  When it comes to controversial issues that most people get really heated about, there are only a handful that I can say that I have an extremely strong position about.  This is simply for the reason that I find that I can easily see most points of view on different topics.  This is not, however, to say that there aren't issues that I do throw down for.  This experiment, though not a controversial issue, is definitely one of them.  I get super frustrated when someone tells me, usually pretty adamantly, that they absolutely can not draw.
  2. My response and personal belief:  I believe that ANYONE who can write their name and draw simple shapes (squares, circles, triangles, etc.) can draw, they just perhaps have not been introduced to the skill in a way that they understand and/or they simply just don't have the desire to pick up a pen or pencil and doodle.
  3. The Participant:  My husband, Joey, who claims that if I can teach him how to draw then I'm a miracle-worker.  Also, anyone else who wants to join in who is convinced they can't draw a stick figure.  Get ready to work some magic.
  4. The goal:  To provide a lesson per week in order to supply the skills needed in order to draw a still life and a portrait/self-portrait with a good sense of proportion, detail, and accuracy.  I don't expect perfection (nobody's perfect) and I don't expect a miracle to be made.  I just expect an understanding that when we put our mind to it and approach a challenge from an angle in which we personally understand, then we can begin to accomplish what we thought we were incapable of doing.  

*As a side-note, because I believe that everyone CAN draw, I would like ONLY positive feedback in the comment box as it is a courageous thing for a person to openly display their work for presentation of progress, critique, or for the benefit of a friend's experiment.  Thank you!

  • Lesson #1
    • The Anatomy of the face
      • I believe that when it comes to understanding how to draw the human face and body, that it is typically a misunderstanding of the anatomy of the face and it's proportions.  Therefore, the lesson was meant to provide the guidelines for the human face in order to better understand how to begin to approach it.  This makes a daunting task into a simpler, multi-step approach.
The Original Portrait, before the lesson:

Joey's portrait of me sitting on the couch.

The Portrait after, when using step-by-step guidelines and simpler approaches to those hard to understand facial features (we didn't approach a full-body portrait, just the face, for Lesson 1):

BTW, this is Joey's "After" portrait... great, right?
Hopefully I can get my scanner to work soon so that the images can be seen more clearly.

First, we broke down the shape of the face into a simple shape that starts as a circle, becomes more of an oval, and then into an upside down egg shape:

Then, we drew guidelines that help to break down the face into it's more anatomically correct proportions.

After the guidelines were drawn, I explained the specific placement for each facial feature and broke them down into simple shapes that can later be expanded upon for a more realized portrait.  For example:  Eyes can begin as football shapes, one arc sitting on top of the eye guideline, one arc directly underneath.

The nose can be broken down into simple curves for the tip and nostrils of your snout.  And, to approach it in an even easier way, draw a capital letter "J" and add nostrils.

(My examples of simple noses)

Details always help a more realized portrait look more interesting, so don't forget eyebrows, eyelids, eyelashes, earrings, the little "V" in the lip, etc.

So, what do you think of the  before and the after?  I personally like the before better for it's character and uniqueness, but for someone who wants to be more technical, then, is this helpful?  What do you think about the experiment?  I love working with Joey with things like this.  He wants to give me some writing lessons, so, since he's being a good sport about this, I'll be a good sport and post those lessons too if/when we do them.

Hope your week is going well!  Cool stuff to browse through on Friday!

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