Friday, July 6, 2007

Drawing from the Masters #3

Above is my finished copy of a Norman Rockwell print about Summer. I took it from a 3x3 image in a book I have, Norman Rockwell Illustrator by Arthur Guptill. My version was done on 11x14 paper.

Of course, Rockwell is detailed. His drawings and painting are full of (seemingly)effortless detail - that he can wave around such skill all over his canvas so easily makes for greater impact to his work. So often the humor is in the details, something Rockwell combined to a charming degree. I am keen to do more copies, just to get more of his sense of detail and emphasis.

This all dovetails nicely with what I am reading in Drawing Lessons from the Great Masters by Hale. Chapter two is called Line. Hale then proceeds through all types of lines an artist encounters...where plane meets plane, color meets color, tone meets tone, etc. He talks about using contour lines in figures to define shape:

It is too bad that human beings are not striped like zebras, because then it would be very easy to explain the shape of the nude. But since they are not, the artist is forever seeking and even inventing such lines in his search for the illusion of form. He invents all kinds of lines he cannot see at all. This, I assure you, takes a thorough knowledge of the elements of drawing...

It is said that as soon as you can run contour lines perfectly in any direction over any part of the body, you have really learned to draw.


Today I had the morning off (thanks to my husband) and went out for a troll through the art shop. Afterwards I sketched a statue outside of Borders books. It began to rain, so I only got in a few minutes. While I was drawing, anticipating the rain, I kept thinking about much better it would be if I had the skill to know where to invent lines or emphasize lines on a figure. If I had more anatomical understanding, which Hale encourages, I could be quicker in getting information down. So I guess I'm back to practice, practice...

2 comments:

stan said...

Wow! We really like this one.

Rose Welty said...

Thanks, I really like Norman Rockwell. I definitely wish I could draw and paint like that.