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Old 03-25-2002, 03:53 AM   #11
Nathaniel Miller Nathaniel Miller is offline
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I've actually done a couple of sight-size drawings now, using your instructions, Steven, with good results (simple subjects.....display of fruit, crumpled paper bag and such). I think the constant flipping between the subject and drawing really trains your eye. It seems like I got better at it even after the first drawing.

So now I'm doing sight-size drawings, old master copies (finishing a copy of an Ingres drawing now), and drawings from life in my sketchbook when time permits (also reading/working through those books I mentioned earlier to learn anatomy, etc.).
My drawing wasn't too horrible before, so after a few months of this, I hope to see some good progress.

Thanks again for allowing me to shamelessly mooch advice and instruction!

Nathan
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Old 03-25-2002, 08:12 AM   #12
Geri Comicz Geri Comicz is offline
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Steven,

This is wonderful!!! Thank you. Geri
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Old 03-27-2002, 01:10 AM   #13
Steven Sweeney Steven Sweeney is offline
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Even I can't bear to wade through my previous posts, but I do fear that I've left out a very critical requirement for sight-size work, and that is that your drawing or painting surface MUST be vertical. Use a level. If you're using a tripod-type easel, you need to shore up the top edge of your drawing board or canvas to ensure that the surface is vertical. Otherwise, the toes will be the size of tomatoes and the head an orange, or vice versa. (If your subject does look like that, then you're an animator for "Shrek", but most families won't enjoy a similar depiction of little Hadley.)

No offense meant to vegetarians or ogres.
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Old 03-27-2002, 02:16 AM   #14
Nathaniel Miller Nathaniel Miller is offline
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thumbs up

I got that figured out when the paper bag was wider on the paper than in life, but the measurements were accurate......I had the easel tilted to the right a little (the right side was a tiny bit further back). So I realized the same would be true in all directions.

I'm assuming it's normal to erase nearly twice the amount of charcoal you end up leaving on the paper (at first at least)? And for a drawing of a crumpled paper bag to take upwards of 12 hours of work?

I hope so.

Nathan
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Old 03-27-2002, 04:14 AM   #15
Steven Sweeney Steven Sweeney is offline
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Yes, Nathaniel, sorry I forgot to include that detail earlier -- I had thought of it, but my short-term memory is . . .

yes, that's it . . . fading. (Also, I fear that I'm scooping into the site too many shovelsful of stuff, so sometimes I just omit a scoop.) But the fact that you discovered the event yourself is FAR FAR more important than if I'd remembered to say it first and you'd just followed my lead. So congratulations, you've made a huge leap. Fifty Chess Master points.

As for time of work on a drawing, I've done lots of pencil drawings in four hours -- some of which were execreble and others were, dare I say, a lot more than okay. And our so-called "long poses" at the studio gave us -- whether working in charcoal, pastel or oil -- about 80 or more actual hours' worth of work on a piece. Admittedly you probably can't make a living on that rate of production early on, but it sure trains you for the long run. A writer friend of mine used to call this work "right-brain sit-ups."

Do 'em.

Steven
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Old 04-13-2002, 04:02 AM   #16
Steven Sweeney Steven Sweeney is offline
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One More Note for Sight-Size Practitioners

I'm duplicating a post from elsewhere, because it implicates sight-size procedures discussed earlier in this thread:

One last note on one-eyed viewing, and that relates to sight-size drawing. In order to view your subject "through" the plumb lines, you're going to have to close one eye. Because one eye is dominant (it may or may not be the one you decide to close), it's important to always close the same eye when you take your measurements. Don't switch back and forth. One of my instructor's first questons when beginning a drawing critique was always, "Which eye are you looking with?, because he'd do the same in order to assess my accuracy.

Incidentally, if you want to know which is your dominant eye, pick out an object across the room and hold out your arm with index finger raised and sight "through" the finger to the object, with BOTH EYES open. If, when you close your left eye, the relative positions of the finger and object stay about the same, your right eye is dominant. Keep the left eye open and close the right, and the finger "moves" some distance to the right of the object. The opposite effects with left-eye dominance. In a non-art context in which this really "matters", if you're trap shooting and you hold the shotgun on the right but you're left-eye dominant, you'll swear your aim is perfect but the clay pigeon will just fly away unharmed. Switch to the left side and you'll probably have much higher percentages.

Finally, this is important to know because the "'Artist's Perspective' Eyepatch" is to be worn over the nondominant eye.

Steven
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