Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Learning To Draw People

I have spent a lifetime avoiding the human figure. That said, I avoided a lot of other things as well. Trees, oil paints, landscapes. I was comfortable with things like houses, boats, piers, even a factory or two. I could see their edges and forms and went from there.

However, when I took my first oil painting class I discovered it was also a course in landscape painting. Me and trees? Definitely not a good combination. I did get down the mountains, distance coloring and with many struggles the trees. A teacher in a class I took in Vegas got us to see how a tree was constructed and that painting hangs in my home office still. That was my breakthrough and I am not afraid of trees anymore.

While there are 7 billion of us on earth the idea of painting people has always remained daunting. A close friend suggested I try but then when a customer commented on the quality of my crafts but the less than stellar people on some of them, I decided to act. Baby steps.

I brought paper, pencil, a BIG eraser and Chris Hart's book FIGURE IT OUT: The Beginners Guide To Drawing People and try to spend a little time each day mastering the human form.  I am still on heads, one of the most important parts anyway but have been surprised at what makes a good head. A few simple strokes changes everything.

I'm not ready to share, but if you like me struggle with people, there are some good books out there.  While I'm sure there are videos as well, they'd  go far to fast for me.

Visit for wonderful crafts and fine art.

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