Why you should study drawing fundamentals?
If you are an art enthusiast like myself, then I am sure that at some stage in your artistic journey you have hit the void of inspiration and creativity. This usually happens when you have reached saturation of your skill capacity, or when you have an idea for a project but it feels out of your reach and capabilities. In order to push through this creative block, you either have to let the idea go or level up. This tutorial is all about why you should study drawing fundamentals and how in doing so you will achieve results in your art beyond your expectations.
There are many components that go into making a successful set of drawings. Most of which will give you the impression that you are back in primary school.
The reason for this is that we have all, at some stage in our lives, learned the basics of mark-making. Then for the majority of us, over time we set aside these simple infant-like drawing techniques in exchange for more complicated ones.
Without ever really grasping the foundations necessary to develop our drawings in a more mature way. We find ourselves in constant frustration and despair.
Let’s take for example a stick figure drawn by a 7-year-old and compare it to a gesture drawing showing a specific action or a pose. There are many similarities in the way these 2 examples are drawn. They definitely give us enough information to understand the nature of the subject. Why is it then, that as we get older, we lose this primal skill and intuitive approach to drawing?
The real trick to drawing is to keep things as simple as possible.
Then to gradually add details according to the level of completion you are looking for.
As adults, too often we lean towards complex ideas and methods which simply do not allow us to grasp the essence of our subject. Leaving us frustrated to the point of thinking we have no talent or that art is simply not for us.
Take for example of a golf swing. In order to draw such a complex movement, it is essential to first understand the mechanics of the swing and how the body moves in relation to the action.
To attempt to capture such a broad movement and rotation with all the details of this person would simply be impossible without some sort of structural guideline.
To help us understand these movements, the stick figure is a perfect solution.
Here are 4 examples of why you should learn about drawing fundamentals
The fundamental principles of drawing will teach you how to work with layers of detail.
When you strip back all the layers of a complex shape you are left with a skeletal structure. This is the basic gesture of an object or person. Understanding how to see things in their simplest form will enable you to draw things that you never imagined possible.
Rather than focusing on the complex details of your subject. Instead, try to analyze what you are seeing in a practical way that will help you set up a successful drawing.
Understanding the fundamental principles of drawing will give you faster results with less effort.
Sure! there are times when you will want to spend multiple hours rendering, painting, etching, and inking your wonderful piece of art.
But what happens when you just want to experiment with a few concept drawings or figure out your next composition?
By using a simple mannequin figure to draw out your idea. It is easier to map out the movements and gestures in a composition without having to labor over all the details.
This is how it would translate from a stick figure to a more defined human shape.
Using specific techniques in the right context will help you level up in drawing much faster.
If you initially take the time to learn the fundamentals of drawing and research what information is available and accessible, there is no doubt that your artwork will look and feel more established and professional.
What do I mean by this?
Too often artists will settle on predetermined reference photos to create their art. Leaving little to no room for variation, and development. The main reason for this is due to a lack of understanding of how to properly construct a drawing.
When you construct a drawing rather than copy an image, what you are essentially doing is breathing life into your work.
Giving your drawings a more dynamic look and feel.
Knowing all about the rules of drawing gives you the freedom to bend them in a more intentional way.
Subtle gestures that add emotion and movement to a drawing can bring so much more value to your art than simply perfectly rendering a photo. “food for thought”
Easier said than done. However, once you have grasped the notion of drawing. Manipulating shapes, lines, textures, proportions, and perspective, will open up new doors for creative opportunities. Doors that will allow you to discover your real creative potential.
And that is why you should study drawing fundamentals!
If you are up for the challenge and serious about learning how to draw then I really do recommend spending some time either revisiting or learning the fundamentals of drawing from the start. You will not be disappointed if you stick it out till the end.
I have provided a link below to my introduction to drawing fundamentals if you wish to have a look and get started right away.
Until next time
Art enthusiast David Lagesse.