Project 4: structure
A variety of drawings and sketches looking at the structures underlying the human figure. Sadly no skeletons were hanging around my studio, so I turned to the internet for source images - thankfully there are lots. So here are some of the pieces I produced, including some odd, disproportionate skeletons which were nevertheless fun to draw.
Research point: historic and contemporary artists whose work involves the underlying structure of the body.
Leonardo da Vinci is an obvious go-to for this research, as his sketchbooks were filled with detailed, analytical studies of the human form, from skeleton to sinews to body parts and whole bodies. They are incredible drawings, detailed, accurate, clear and annotated. I feel I should spend a whole year just doing these drawings.
Henry Moore: although I couldn't find specific anatomy drawings by Moore, his sculptures and preparatory drawings are so much about bones it's hard to ignore them; he captures the feel, texture, weight and shape of human and animal bones.
Contemporary Spanish artist Fernando Vicente:
Project 5: the moving figure
For all my wrestling with measuring figures as I drew them, I probably found this the most challenging of all the sections on figure drawing, for two reasons: drawing people who are moving and not posing gives you only split seconds to see and capture what is there; and secondly, largely involved drawing outside and in front of people: I found it hard enough doing this just drawing urban landscapes, but ten times more difficult and for me, uncomfortable drawing the people. It's not difficult to tell how uncomfortable I felt when you look at the work I produced for this section. Many of these sketches emerge looking very 'cartoon' like, stilted, disproportionate, stiff.
The easiest to capture were sitting in cafés, seated looking away from me; but I still felt very uncomfortable drawing them. I nevertheless found single figures sitting alone the most interesting, wondering why they're there alone, are they waiting for someone? Killing time? Enjoying some quiet space to themselves? There are fewer clues about them than when others are present, which leaves more room to speculate and reflect on how they are dressed, what they're carrying and what this suggests. It reminds me of some of Edward Hopper's subjects:
Once again, I have a long way to go yet!
Exercise 1: single moving figures
Exercise 2: Groups of figures