Life Drawing Focus: foreshortening

I had intended to focus on foreshortening last week at the life drawing class but only got one opportunity – and only then because I beat the tutor to it! He settled for drawing the model from her feet up while I drew her from the head down. The biggest problem in drawing a foreshortened image is in ignoring what you know to be there and drawing only what you can see (this may sound obvious but the difficulty is exaggerated when tackling a foreshortened image). 

I began with a gesture drawing, which I am developing now as a regular part of my drawing practice.  I tend to draw the gesture using a fine liner.  Sometimes, the gesture is fairly loose and sometimes too tense.  It can help to hold the pen further from its tip and draw larger. The drawing below is enlarged from the corner of an A4 sketchbook.  

 

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Here is the drawing that emerged from this gesture drawing.  The fingers are not well-proportioned but they are recognisably fingers, which is progress.  I drew and redrew the lags several times, initially overestimating the size.  The model’s head is probably too small, given that is the part of her that is closest, bar her left hand.  The tutor commented on this but also said that to increase the size might seem counterintuitive to the viewer who would perceive it as too large and out of proportion with the rest of her body.  The drawing was made in pencil.  

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Other drawings from this session will be published in a separate post. 

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