Dimensional Dominator

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cybertortoise22's Sketchbook

  • Sharing the Knowledge
  • Dimensional Dominator
    4:04 PM, Friday September 4th 2020
    • should there not be a part in the exercise where you check if you actually did it right o.o?

    There is, check step 3! Though you won't check all objects. Both options given in the step involve you looking on the Internet or in real life actual true information.

    Why the imagination part? Because it forces you to think actively about the subject so that you'll remember better the corrections you make in step 3. It also makes you train some abilities that you won't get only drawing from references, like the ability to retrieve from memory and the ability to see more when you observe.

    • but don´t you need some reference to also study the texture and smaller details of an object, in order to draw it from imagination?

    You can choose any set of five subjects. Textures are a perfect valid subject too. And again, you'll correct it at step 3 if you want to.

    • And I often got the information that you should study one subject rather often and long, instead of multiple subjects only briefly.

    Absolutely not. And this is not just my opinion, is a well proven scientific fact that mixing stuff up boosts comprehension and makes it easier to stick in your memory rather than doing one at a time. I'm sure you will find the studies easily on the Internet, I read them on the book "make it stick: The Science of Successful Learning". It feels more confusing though, but you're still learning more.

    Also, you simply can't study all the objects one at a time, for a long time. As I said on my previous comment, there are just too many objects in the world to do that. With this method, you're drawing 150 subjects per month, 5x365= 1825 subjects per year! And since you are forced to select 3 takeaways every day, it amounts to 1095 keypoints per year! That's 1095 lessons you'll hardly forget.

    • there just seem to be very different opinions going around on how to study to create a good visual library o.O.

    YES! Every artist will tell you their method like it's the absolute truth! That's exactly why I devised a method myself, so I could base it on actual scientific studies on how the human brain works rather than on my personal opinion. Still, this method is still in progress, and probably isn't perfect. I'll keep doing it and improving it as I go.

    Best of luck!

    9:32 AM, Friday September 4th 2020

    Hey, I'm glad to hear someone is interested on this!

    I didn't know about the shrimp method. I looked it up and yeah, definitely the tracing and drawing from reference part is too long. I also think it's more based on muscle memory than on an actual understanding of the subject.

    Answering to your question: No. You can and should move onto the new set, because what matters are the three takeaways, not the whole subject itself. Don't you think that it's kind of a waste of time to draw the whole subject again just to apply one specific change?

    In fact, even if you don't remember the keypoints from the previous day (which doesn't happen that much) I wouldn't recommend to draw it again.

    If you're really going to try this, here's a tip. Remember that you have two options for active learning, studying one subject or making three specific questions? I'd recommend to use the three questions more often than the other. The reason is that answers to questions you asked yourself are much easier to remember.

    There is really only one situation where I'd rather study in detail one subject, which is when you really have no idea whatsoever on how that object is. These are the objects that come out horribly wrong during the drawing from imagination part.

    5:09 PM, Thursday September 3rd 2020

    I'd recommend to you to do all of them with three vanishing points. Everything you learn with 1 and 2 point perspective boxes point perspective can be learned doing 3 point perspective. And it doesn't work the other way around.

    Moreover, the instructions says the boxes must be like in the organic perspective exercise. So only three point perspective.

    2 users agree
    3:37 PM, Thursday September 3rd 2020

    Having a visual library means understanding the object, so using the Drawabox construction method is better than the the other approach. Not only because you are forced to think about the form of the object, but because the drawabox method doesn't focus on reproducing the exact same subject but instead tries to makes it feel like that kind of subject. In Uncomfortable's words: "We're not trying to draw this exact potato plant. We're drawing a potato plant". Or something like that hahah.

    That being said, applying the construction method to fill your visual library isn't that great of an option either. It's more of an exercise to train your spacial awareness skills. Here are some reasons why you shouldn't use this method as a method to fill your visual library:

    • It takes too much. There are too many objects in this world for you to expect to draw a sufficient fraction of them using the construction method. The method takes too long for pretty much every object (and imagine complex objects).

    • The focus is elsewhere. The focus of this exercise, the stuff you're brain will be most occupied with, will always be the three dimensionality. Not the object.

    • You don't cover everything about the object. Yes, you understand more about the object than with the copying method. But it doesn't answer questions like: "Why is the object like this?", "How are the parts connected?", "What is the function of each part?", "How does it work?"... . In short, we understand better objects by studying how function instead of their volume. Take, for example, a belt. You will learn to draw it much faster if you understand how the fastening works rather than studying the form. Because it will make sense to you!

    The best thing about understanding why an object, animal, plant is that way rather than how it exists in space is that in this way the knowledge translates to other countless objects. I mentioned a belt before. If you understand how a belt works, you can apply that knowledge to other countless objects that use the same fastening system, like watches or some hats. Yes, you can TECHNICALLY apply the same logic here with the construction method, but the problem is that the similarities between difference objects won't be that obvious if you only see the form.

    So, all this explanation is great, but how could you apply this? I'd recommend to try this exercise I devised a few weeks ago that it's helping me so much to build a visual library. Try it a few days before deciding to discard it, I promise it was a game changer to me! I applied lots of concepts I read on a few "how to learn" type books.

    The exercise: takes around 30 minutes, I do it once per day. The strong point about this exercise is that it forces you to think actively about the objects before studying them. It may seem complex at first but it's very rewarding. Steps:

    1. Think about around 5 things. Literally anything will do. For example: triceratops, Lakers cap, guitar, clothespin and a braid.

    2. Draw all of them from imagination for around 25 minutes, as accurately as you remember them. If you're not sure of how some part is, it's much better to make a guess and draw it than leave it blank. Pay special attention to try to understand how they work. You can do multiple drawings of the same objects and even write some notes.

    3. The remaining 5 minutes (you can take more time here if you need to), you can choose one of the following two options. Either study in detail only one of the five objects (example: search how a triceratops is), or ask three very specific questions about any of the 5 objects (1. how are the pegs of a guitar positioned? 2. How is the visor of a Lakers cap sawed? 3. How long is a triceratops tail?)

    4. Based on what you learned, write down the three things you learned you think are the most valuable. These three things must be very specific. If you chose to ask the three questions, the three lessons will obviously be their three answers.

    5. Next day (and only this day), before starting again, try to recall from memory those three keypoint you selected. If you don't remember, read them again.

    If you actually try this, I would love to hear if it ends up working for you. If you want more information about the exercise or the reasoning behind some of the steps, feel free to ask.

    6:50 AM, Wednesday September 2nd 2020

    Thank you for taking the time to write this! Especially because the pages aren't rotated (for some reason Imgur didn't manage to) so it could be understandably annoying to some to review.

    Something that I didn't say in the description is that some pages aren't the first try. That's why the textures in the texture analysis are much more implicit and correct than most of the dissections. The reason I redid some of these is that I took a break of about 5 months to focus on my studies and when I came back I found that I could do much better at some of them.

    Anyway, I wasn't that aware of the rest of the mistakes you pointed out, thank you again! I'm sure both my organic and form intersections will look much better now!

    Hope other users agree with you, I really love this lesson's badge haha.

    2 users agree
    3:30 PM, Sunday August 30th 2020

    Looks nice, it seems you read carefully the instructions and took your time. Congrats! But normally, there are some issues here that you should be aware of.

    Arrows: I'm only going to comment the second page, as it seems you realized and corrected some of the mistakes you made in the first page. The main problem I see is how you're applying line weight. You apply too much, and you apply it incorrectly. The difference of line weight should be subtle to not divert the attention from the arrow as a whole. And by applying it incorrectly, I mean that you're chicken scratching instead of going over the lines confidently and in one pass. Confidence before accuracy.

    Sausages: try varying even more the the degree of the ellipses to make them more three dimensional, especially in the contour sausages because right now they're looking quite flat. Also, some ellipses are not well aligned to the axis, be careful with that because one bad ellipse really kills the illusion of space. In terms of line quality, I see some wobblines, again especially in the contour sausages.

    Texture analysis: I'd recommend to take more time with the squares in the left, both to fill them to completion (you left blank spaces in the tortoise shell texture) and to look more carefully to put in more detail (they're all quite simplistic).

    About the right side, the main problem I see is the lack of an actual transition. The black bars are too evident. In the tortoise shell texture, you transition to full white too quickly.

    Dissections: I don't see scratching/scribbling (which is very good) but they still look messy. Why? Because the edges of the black areas/shapes are too irregular, it's unnecessary and meaningless noise that distracts and confuses the viewer. To make them smoother, try outlining the area you want to fill and then fill it. Also, fill properly with black, I noticed some black areas have plenty of white spots. This looks bad exactly for the same reasons as the edges.

    Intersections: fill more the pages! You'll both save paper and learn more hahah. Once again, I see wobbly line weight. Lastly, the cylinders are too long. Stick to roughly equilateral forms. Why does this matter? I think it's because this way all the forms will have not too different foreshortenings which makes it easier to understand the scene.

    Organic intersections: again, fill better the black areas and keep their edges smooth! Moreover, you're using the same contour lines as in the contour sausages. Here in this exercise we use another kind of contour lines, here's a link to its text section ( I also find the sausages a bit rigid, and I feel like the reason is that you could be exaggerate more the effect of gravity, how it makes the sausages dangle.

    Next Steps:

    It seems you're struggling with wobbly/unconfident lines in most of these exercises. Are you still practicing the lesson 1 exercises in your warmups? And if you are, maybe try reading the instructions again. It's important to have these concepts down.

    Despite bashing your lesson this whole time, this is a nice submission. In my opinion, you pass lesson 2! Now lets just hope other members agree!

    This community member feels the lesson should be marked as complete, and 2 others agree. The student has earned their completion badge for this lesson and should feel confident in moving onto the next lesson.
    8:04 AM, Friday August 28th 2020

    Well, you see, I try to recycle as much paper as possible so I'm always asking people for pages with a blank side that they don't need anymore. Those pages in particular were given to me by a friend who does role play.

    You too have a great journey, keep putting this same amount of effort and I'm sure you'll get where you want in art!

    9:14 PM, Thursday August 27th 2020

    I love these new pages, what an amazing progression! You really corrected everything!

    Arrows: Notice how even though the line weight in your arrows isn't that precise, they still look far better than before. The precision wasn't really the problem. The problem was the amount of line weight you put before, and now that that you have limited the amount of passes they feel much more alive. I also noticed you're now slanting the edges, which probably has contributed to make them more organic. However, you're slanting them only in a fashion that kinda undermines the foreshortening, in the sense that they feel wider in the "side" farther from us. That doesn't mean these are less valid, but try to make some bending in the other direction too in the future.

    Dissections: look how clean the edges are now! So much more pleasant to see.

    Form intersections: now that the line weight is applied only locally, the whole feels clearer. I see you're struggling with intersections with curved forms, but that will improve with time as long as you keep practicing the exercise and try weirder intersections.

    Thank you for the nice comments about my submission! Still, you're far from right when you say my superimposed lines are good, just zoom at some the arrows haha. In fact, some edges have quite an amount of passes, but I've already corrected that, just as you have.

    Some answers to other stuff:

    • when I have to draw small things with the shoulder, I lose a lot of precision

    It's normal, but you should still do it. Confidence before accuracy. I'm now doing lesson 3 and I completely destroyed one of the drawings because I started doing very small circles with the wrist. It just looks SO WRONG for some reason.

    • and when I come out of the exercises, in production or something else, I become hesitant again...

    Don't worry about that as long as you're doing it right inside the lessons. As you internalize the concepts they will begin to show everywhere else. And anyway, we hardly ever need all this rigor outside of these lessons. It's more about changing your mindset than your actual process.

    • About the transition, however, I think I am quite close to the examples in the lesson, but I see what you mean and being more gradual could also be done.

    I don't think the examples mean to show the best quality possible, but instead to show effectively the main points of the lesson.

    • how fast do you make your lines ? The fastest you can ?

    Fast enough so I can't think when I'm marking, but definitely not as fast as I can. The best tip I can give you is to make the lines as slow as possible as long as they don't have any wobbliness.

    • and how fast do you make your superimposed lines ? As fast as the first one or slower ?

    I'd say as fast as the original one. Until a few days ago I was doing curved lines a bit slower and I would get wobbliness regularly, but because I'm now with lesson 3 and in this lesson flow is the top priority, I've been forced to change this bad habit.

    • do you touch the sheet with your palm when you’re drawing ? Or are you totally free hand ?

    I hover because I usually put too much pressure when I support my palm with the page. And when i do use touch the page it's very lightly.

    • do you work on a inclined plan (draw table) or flat ?

    Flat. Though I tried an inclined table in the past and I noticed my circles were looking better, so I'll probably buy one in the future. Still not a priority.

    • are you russian (I'm french) ? Your rough drafts look like role-playing character sheets, and with Cyrillic fonts ? Wich role playing game ?

    Which rough drafts? Cirillic fonts? I don't know what you're talking about ahah. I'm not russian nor french.

    I do have an art instagram, but only close friends follow me for now. Hope you understand, and anyway I'm sure you'd be disappointed haha.

    Next Steps:

    In my opinion, you definitely pass the lesson, let's hope other users agree! Remember, of course, to keep practicing all of these exercises as you move onto lesson 3.

    That being said, I haven't seen if you've corrected the sausages. You don't have to post them here, but make sure to apply the feedback to them as well, because with your latest improvements in the arrows, textures and intersections they have now become your weakest exercise!

    This community member feels the lesson should be marked as complete, and 2 others agree. The student has earned their completion badge for this lesson and should feel confident in moving onto the next lesson.
    2 users agree
    1:50 PM, Tuesday August 25th 2020

    This looks good! I see the effort put into this, so I'll try to put some effort into this critique as well.

    Arrows: when you look at the whole page, they look very good. However, as I zoom into each one, I see a problem which is how you applied line weight. You are applying it to the whole line, which is wrong because it undermines the solidity and flow of the arrows. Apply it strategically on the turning points and overlaps only. Another problem that you put too much line weight, which you probably did because after applying it to the whole line you felt like it needed more.

    Sausages: the outlines are so clean! How do you do that? However, the sausages flat because you're not varying the degree of the ellipses that much, especially on the contour ones. Moreover, i think the ellipses themselves could be improved. Some look like you shoul've ghosted them more before. It also seems you're having troubles with raising your pen unintentionally? This could be an indicator of a lack of confidence in your marks, and it must be corrected anyway because it's affecting negatively the tridimensionality,

    I want to point out one specific sausage, the top one on the center of the first page. I'm getting mixed messages about its orientation in space. It's foreshortening makes me think the top part is closer to us, but then that small ellipse at the bottom makes it look like it's actually the bottom that's facing towards us. Be careful with these kind of disagreements.

    Texture analysis: probably my favorite page from your homework. It is clear you understood this exercise.

    Most students, myself included, tend to have more difficulty transitioning to pure white than to pure black, but in your case it seems to be the opposite. Your transitions to white are very good, especially the one in the middle, but your transitions to black are too sudden. Maybe try looking at the exemples shown in the lessons again, or other submissions from other students.

    I also noticed that the edges of the areas filled with black are too irregular. if they had been less wobbly the textures would look so much better. You could try outlining first the shapes you pretend to fill with black to make sure the edges are confident and smooth, and then fill them.

    Dissections: the textures here are worse than in the texture analysis exercise, and it's because you started outlining shapes instead of suggesting them (for exemple, see the fur, cloud and octopus textures). You also started scratching and scribbling, which is a common mistake that arises when you aren't looking too carefully. This is probably the biggest mistake on these pages because I see in lots of the textures (for example, banana, stone and leaf).

    The edges of the areas in black here are also irregular, like in the texture analysis. You also didn't fill properly with black some areas which results in noisy zones uncomfortable to look at.

    Form intersections: First of all, FILL THE PAGES as much as you can. Don't worry about the page getting confusing, it's how you'll learn the most. The forms look good, though the cylinders are a bit too stretched (remember that you should stick with more compressed shapes because the extreme foreshortening that arouses with elongated forms creates unnecessary complexity. You also are quite obviously making a clean up pass, which is a very big mistake. Read here why

    The intersections themselves look good, but I see what you did there. You are definitely avoiding intersections between curved forms. You only have two intersection of this type and it's the same: between a sphere and a cylinder, in the easiest position. Don't be afraid and intersect cones, spheres and cylinders. They are the most difficult, but you will learn more with these than with any other.

    Organic intersections: my first though was "these look good, almost too good". Looking closer, it's easy to see why: the lines are thin and wobbly, which is a clear indicator that you lacked confidence in your mark making and focused on your accuracy and keeping them thin. Your priority should always be making confident, bold lines. The rest comes after.

    Tridimensionally speaking, the piles look good. Though the cast shadows are too thin.

    Generally speaking, I see a lack of confidence in your marks everywhere. The lines are too thin and sometimes wobbly. Sometimes the line even gets interrupted because you raised the pen. Are you still practicing all the lesson 1 exercises as warmups (especially the ones that focus on confidence)? And if you are, read the instructions again so you know what you should be aiming towards.

    Next Steps:

    Before moving onto lesson 3, I'm going to ask you to repeat two pages of form intersections, keeping in mind the feedback I gave you and filling the pages as much as you can. Maybe read the instructions again. After you finish them, send them here for us to see and you'll probably get the badge.

    When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
    11:01 AM, Tuesday August 25th 2020

    Hey! This was actually my first critique here, so sorry to not have been clear enough. The thing is, the specific mistakes you made aren't that important. Everyone makes mistakes in this exercise and as you know the intersections aren't even the main focus of the exercise.

    The problem is that it seems (at least to me) that some intersections were done hastily without fully considering the space. Why do I think this? Because most of the intersections are actually okay, but then some are very wrong. That's why more than pointing you out specific mistakes I told you to just be more careful. Because it should to the trick.

    The intersectons will improve as you continue practing this exercise in your warmups. But if you want some exemples (I can't give you many because it's very difficult to refer to specific forms when the pages are full of them):

    -Page 1: top box in the center. Any of its 3 intersections makes sense to me.

    -Page 3: top right corner (box and cylinder).

    -Page: bottom right corner. That cylinder and pyramid over the cube. And the fact that you messed up the lines in that pyramid kind of supports the idea that you should be taking more time and care with this exercise.

    EDIT: typo

    Next Steps:

    I'll mark the lesson as complete when you reply this comment with the two new pages of dissections (now using cast shadows). Remember, read the instructions carefully.

    Best of luck.

    When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
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Sakura Pigma Microns

Sakura Pigma Microns

A lot of my students use these. The last time I used them was when I was in high school, and at the time I felt that they dried out pretty quickly, though I may have simply been mishandling them. As with all pens, make sure you're capping them when they're not in use, and try not to apply too much pressure. You really only need to be touching the page, not mashing your pen into it.

In terms of line weight, the sizes are pretty weird. 08 corresponds to 0.5mm, which is what I recommend for the drawabox lessons, whereas 05 corresponds to 0.45mm, which is pretty close and can also be used.

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