Quick Figure Drawing Sketches at the Boston Figurative Art Center
June 27, 2016
As you know, I really enjoy figure drawing. Since I moved to the Boston area, I've been looking for an affordable figure drawing spot. I recently tried out the Boston Figurative Art Center in Somerville, MA. They have a wide variety of frequent sketching get togethers. Based on the kind of work I do, my preference is always shorter poses. So I chose an evening of dynamic drawing. Here's the description:
Come draw some dynamic poses with us at Damon's studio- we do shorter poses here, 5 minutes to start, and ranging through 10, 20, and 30 minute poses. Informal setting in Damon's painting studio, surrounded by his paintings and work in progress.
I brought a sketchbook and my markers and a friendly smile! As a side note, I prefer to sketch with markers these days for a few reasons:
- It's too easy to make pretty drawings with charcoal. All that smudging allows for a lot of fudging.
- I want to force myself to make lines with commitment. Marker is somewhat unforgiving and therefore forces me to commit.
- Marker sketches last forever. They don't smudge all over the place or require any special treatment.
Anyhow, let's get to the sketches:
A new thing I've been experimenting with is to put quick sketches on top of each other. This makes them less precious and encourages me to just draw and not worry about the outcome in any way shape or form.
Speaking of not worrying about the outcome...
...some sketches are ugly. They're just ugly. And that's fine. The point of going to a sketch night is to practice, not to make beautiful finished art.
You can see that I like to use my sketching time to experiment with different styles of drawing. The figure on the left is an outline drawing. The figure on the right is a solid colored shape with a quick outline added afterwards. Any practice session should be about experimentation, in my opinion.
My standard for these quick sketches is simple: Could someone looking at the sketch get into the pose the model is in? Would they know where the model's weight was? Be able to get the correct twist of the torso?
In previous sketching sessions I've been to, the furniture was always draped with cloth, which makes drawing it kind of easy and shapeless. However, at this studio, the furniture was there in all its glory and I enjoyed bringing it into the sketches.
Sometimes with a longer pose, I get bored. And so I'll draw the image several times in a few different styles. The first pose (far left) was early in the night. Some of the students really liked the pose (I did not, I prefer seeing the model's face.) and so she recreated in later. That's sketch #2 (middle). I got bored after a while and so I decided to eliminate color (gray sketch) and then I decided to try shading in a more stylized and cartoon-y fashion. Of the four iterations, the grayscale one is my favorite. How about you? Which is your favorite of these four?
Overall, this was a great experience. I have a lot of trouble with profiles and had plenty of opportunity to practice them during this drawing session. I look forward to returning to the Boston Figurative Art Center and practicing some more!
Thanks for stopping by!