Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Report from New York, Part 2

All my instructors emphasized the importance of values. In this context, value refers to the lightness or darkness of a section of a drawing, painting, or print. Very dark areas are referred to as "low" value, and very light areas as "high" value. To depict anything in a realistic manner, the values must be rendered correctly, which is harder than it sounds. Conceivably, one could work with two, three, or beyond twenty levels of value. We did lots of value studies.

This drawing (18 x 24) was a month-long value study. The model posed for 20 days, 3 hours a day (with breaks), giving me a rare opportunity to develop the drawing. However, I made the mistake of adding the background somewhat late in the process, only to discover that I had to change all the values of the figure, in order for the whole image to make spatial sense. Lesson learned!

The model below was beginning a 4 week pose, but I had to leave at the end of 4 days. I sped up my process, but the drawing (18 x 24) is unfinished. I was struck by the model's dignified bearing, and wanted to do her justice. It would have been very satisfying to show the rich darks of the shadows moving down the figure from the head, through the arm, along the leg, to the feet. Even so, I learned much from this drawing. 

My color studies over the last few years, combined with all that practice on values, helped me greatly on this 2 week figure study. Again, a wonderful model. 

Our figure painting instructor, Dan Thompson, gave me permission to be as colorful with this piece as possible, which was lots of fun. As noted, it is just a study (20 x 24), and my time ran out before I could finish that extended arm and hand.

Next post, a short tutorial on etching.

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