I’m still not quite settled on the media to use for Figure Drawing.
Pencils are definitely the one where I can get the quickest results for both shape and value. But the size is one clear limitation – filling areas takes a lot of time. Often it forces me to leave areas out.
Dressed Figure Study – Pencil on A4 Paper
I did some Copic sketches also (you can see more Marker Drawings from earlier), though I’m not too happy with the rough structure that shows up in the shading. It saves some time, but not enough to scale the works up.
Charcoal seems like the material of choice for traditional artists – but so far I failed miserably. Either the coal stuck so well to the paper that I couldn’t erase it, or when trying smooth paper, it just disappeared when touching the surface. I might post some of those later. If anyone has insight into which paper is best for charcoal, please let me know. I would really like to work bigger.
Figure and Lighting Study – Ink and Marker on A4 Marker paper.
Ink and pencil seems like a nice mix. Since the ink shows up strongly, it allows for more messy hatching with the led. So the last picture is bigger than the other two.
A little link collection again – starting with some research on metaphors.
This video by “Every Frame A Painting” analyzes how Akira Kurosawa used cinematic techniques in his films. A lot of it is about movement and transitions, but many can be helpful when painting. Specifically the ubiquitous use of weather and the elements as metaphors, and groups of people and extreme poses to emphasize emotions. But more generally the way of thinking: To use every element to bring the message across.
Anyone is curious about the metaphor topic will find the Metaphor Lab interesting. It’s a bi-weekly Meetup in Amsterdam by researchers about metaphors. The next meeting on April 14 being about metaphors in animation movies.
Usually these meetings start with a talk, and a little discussion – was really insightful the last time.
“Jan Six” – oil on canvas – ca. 1654, by Rembrandt van Rijn
…though Rijksmuseum is anyways always worth a visit. Even just for the renovated insides with the murals of George Sturm.
Recently a Dutch organization called ‘Ambulance Wens’, that fulfills wishes for terminally ill people, helped a lady to see the Rijksmuseum one last time. Good sometimes to have such convincing reminders that art matters after all.
Woman watching Rembrandt portrait in the Rijksmuseum
A couple of things I came across in the last weeks, that are worth sharing…
…like Robert Sapolsky talking about his new research into the Toxoplasmosis, the parasite that can change human behavior. It’s actual aim is to influence mice to take more risks. And to paraphrase Sapolsky: It knows more about the brain than all neuroscientists.
As we’re at good speakers, it’s worth checking Ricardo Semler’s TED talk on radical wisdom. He is most known for setting up a company without hierarchical structure – where employees can even set their own salary. But I like how he extends his thinking to education and even everyday life choices.
I really liked the New York Times article on The Cost of Paying Attention . It’s spot on with “…we have allowed our attention to be monetized, if you want yours back you’re going to have to pay for it.”
I noticed myself when visiting Russia once, how relaxing it is not to have commercials plastered everywhere. Though it might have gotten worse since then. In Europe there is still at least some respect of auditory peace. In Japan on the other hand it was always surprising to me that every machine at home or in public are constantly speaking something. Political campaign-cars are driving through town spouting slogans through the streets. This and their aggressive commercials everywhere are an interesting contrast to their Zen image.
Back to art. Here’s a tutorial about composition by the amazing Robh Ruppel.
First off the final result:
Robh Ruppel – digital image for the Composition tutorial
Jason Padgett started creating The geometrical drawings out of nothing, after being brutally hit on the head.
They look fascinating. Sadly its a bit hard to come by well researched articles about this stunning story. This article in the NYPost about Padgett, describes his mathematical drive after his brain injury.
“Padgett is one of only 40 people in the world with “acquired savant syndrome,” a condition in which prodigious talents in math, art or music emerge in previously normal individuals following a brain injury or disease.”
There are also examples of a such injuries leading to musical genius, like in the case of Derek Amato. But let’s stick to the art guy – here is a little news item about Padgett: