Today’s class objective was an interesting and valuable exercise. We were to draw the same model from three different view points, on the same piece of paper and to the same scale. We were to imagine we were providing visual instructions to a sculptor so that they could render a three-dimensional image of the sitter. Initially, our tutor talked to us about the skull, using one he happened to have, indicating the bone structure. We observed the cranium, brows and eye sockets, where the lower jaw joined the skull, the bony bridge of the nose etc. We were instructed to create the structure of the head first taking these points into consideration.
Depending on where we stood in relation to the model, we each had variations of a “front on” and two opposing profile views. We were to work in pencil, draw the first pose for several minutes, then the next two in turn and repeating until the end of the session. We should have each had one piece with three head and neck studies from three differing view points as a result.
I had a fairly straight on view so when Chris, our model, swiveled his chair I had almost a full profile to work with.
The front on study was probably the most successful overall, although the likeness was a little stronger in the second, with the struggle being obvious in the third.
I tried to keep the scale similar although I had a tendency to increase this, particularly in the last study. Chris has very distinctive features and his mouth would relax into quite a pout which was crucial to a likeness but very difficult to achieve, I also seemed to have made his eyes a little staring which gives my drawings a disconcerting look!
I have also added a portrait painted over two 2 1/2 hour sessions earlier this year as a comparison. It shows how the skull structure studies are very useful to judge placement of “landmarks”, the ears are particularly noticeable as being too large in the painting. The general structure of the face is more accurate although some of the features, mostly in the third study, are a quite wrong. A general observation I would make, it that the clinical approach in the studies makes for a less lively image. However, as a preparatory method for accuracy, with more practice, it’s a great foundation for a painting – although, I think our imaginary sculptor would really struggle with my visual instructions!