Jun 27, 2011

Anatomy Basics: More on Muscles

I usually don't post much about my work outside of what I make for paint draw paint. Most of the stuff here is made specifically for the site. I am going to change that up today and write a little about one of the things I  like to think about as I work on my own projects. I started a new couple of paintings this week and while drawing the figure for one of those paintings I thought it would be fun to show you how I look for the anatomy in the figure and how I use it to guide my painting.

Let's take a look.

Jun 19, 2011

Anatomy Basics: Using anatomy to help with figure drawing

Here is something a little different this time around. I have been writing about human anatomy for artist's reference, identifying muscles, and describing what they do, and I wanted to explain why I write these posts and write a little about how studying anatomy will help artists if they are interested in drawing people.

I find learning the human anatomy to be very helpful in my work. The forms created by the human figure are complex. That is to say, there is plenty of stuff to work out when drawing the human figure and having an understanding of what is creating those forms makes it all easier to work out.

Today, we will look at a drawing of a male model to see how an understanding of the underlying muscular anatomy can guide us in figuring out how to draw the forms we see.

Jun 12, 2011

Anatomy Basics: The Muscles of the Torso, pelvis

Moving back to the torso for the anatomy basics posts we will move down to look at some of the muscles that attach the pelvis to the upper leg bone. These muscles play an active role in moving the leg for such functions as running or walking. They also help with stabilizing the torso when standing. Understanding how these muscles cooperate will help us understand the movements the muscles make at this joint.

Today, we will look at the muscles attached to the pelvis, to see the general shape, points where these muscles are attached to the skeletal structures, and how the muscles move the leg.

Let's begin.

Jun 9, 2011

Quick Note: Plein Air Painting

Pein air painting of a field in Elk Grove, 5 x 7 inches
While in school I didn't much care to go plein air painting. I struggled with it and couldn't find anything to keep me interested in it. It's not that I didn't enjoy landscape painting, I just didn't like to go outside and paint it. That has changed.

Now that I have been out of school for some time and teach landscape painting, I have had the chance to explore what plein air painting is all about and I find that I enjoy painting plein air quite a lot. It just took me some time to figure out how to apply what interests me in painting to the plein air process. I like playing with color and I now paint small plein air landscapes as an excuse to play with color and try new approaches.

If you were to compare my paintings to the scenes I used as a reference you would see that I do not try to mimic or copy exactly what I see. I usually simplify the scene to make a nice clean composition and then use the environment as a reference to set up the light and color cues.

Jun 5, 2011

Painting Basics: Atmospheric Perspective in Landscape Painting

Plein air painting showing atmospheric perspective.
When painting a landscape, visual perspective is an important element of creating a successful image. This will include considering where to place the horizon line and the two-point perspective guides. Along with that, there is one more thing we need to consider when painting a scene covering a large distance. That is how the conditions of the atmosphere affect the elements in the scene, which is called atmospheric perspective.

Today, we will look at how to create atmospheric perspective, so that we are able to describe what it is to start using the guides in effectively painting a landscape.

Let's begin,

Jun 1, 2011

Quick Note: Measuring technique when drawing

I thought I might mention that it is alright to measure when drawing or painting from observation. All too often I see people struggling with aspects of their drawings, trying to get things placed correctly but have trouble figuring out where to do so. Measuring and comparing the lengths of a subject in the composition is a good way to remedy this. 

Today, I will demonstrate one way to use your pencil to measure the sizes and positions of features on a face.

Let's take a look.