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moryph's Sketchbook

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  • Basics Brawler
    1:17 AM, Tuesday September 28th 2021

    Thank you very much!

    1 users agree
    5:07 PM, Sunday September 19th 2021

    Hi! So this depends on whether you want to submit for official critique or community critique. Either way though, Lesson 1 and the 250 box challenge (I assume you have only finished these two) are only two submissions, you are supposed to submit all of the exercises in the lesson at once.

    If you are planning on submitting for official critique, you will need to submit all exercises in lesson 1 and wait for feedback and the 2 week waiting period before submitting for the 250 box challenge. In addition, due to how lessons and challenges build upon previous ones, you will need to do additional (I believe 50) boxes for the 250 box challenge before submitting that.

    For community critique, there's no restrictions on submission, so you can submit everything at once if you want. But the fact that the lessons and challenges build upon previous ones still apply, you may have to redo some exercises or parts of the challenge if there are some issues with your approach. Also, note that community critique is not guaranteed, so you may have to move on to later lessons even without feedback.

    1:29 AM, Friday September 10th 2021

    Thank you very much! I definitely aimed for too shallow a convergence on some of these objects. Will keep that in mind for the future.

    2:07 PM, Thursday September 9th 2021

    So the fish scale and rock textures are a bit small, I would recommend getting pictures more the size of the wood texture. But they're workable.

    The first thing that I noticed is that you do seem to be working a lot from memory. The left square is supposed to be an exact recreation of the shadows in a part of the reference. But there are signs that you did not recreate the reference in all 3 rows: the small triangular shapes I see in your wood analysis are not in the reference, the rocks are all different sizes instead of being roughly the same size, and the scales are facing the wrong direction. The line on each of the fish scales I also do not see on the reference.

    You need to draw what you see, not what you think you saw, or what you think wood, rocks or fish scales look like. That's the difference between drawing from observation and memory. This involves looking at the reference every time you want to capture something, then putting it down, then looking at it again, resulting in about 90% of the time looking at the reference and 10% of the time actually drawing.

    As for cast shadows, you should only be capturing the cast shadows you see in the panel on the left. Right now, you are still drawing explicit form outlines. The way to think about cast shadows is to see what forms are present, then think about how they would cast shadows on their surroundings. In references like the rocks, this is easier, you can draw the cast shadows (dark areas) that you see directly, in others you will have to think about where those cast shadows will be. But at this point, getting this perfect is not a big deal, there's going to be a lot of form and texture practice required. Just make a goal to capture cast shadows.

    In the third column, you try to manipulate the density of cast shadows to create a gradient. The best way to approach this is to start in the middle with drawing cast shadows just like you captured on the left. Then, moving to the left, make each of the cast shadows you draw bigger, join them together, ultimately making them solid black like the black left bar. Towards the right, shrink the cast shadows until there are no cast shadows left. Think about a hierarchy of cast shadows here, the deepest shadows will be where multiple forms intersect, while the lightest area will be on the surface of the forms. The deepest shadows will be the last ones to be removed when shrinking shadows, the lightest areas will be the last to be filled with black when growing shadows.

    Hope this helps.

    0 users agree
    5:01 PM, Wednesday September 8th 2021


    To answer your questions first:

    Could someone explain how we check if the cylinder is correct? Do we put the ruler along the axis a draw a line?

    To check if a cylinder is correct, you need to check whether the "true" minor axis of the two ellipses at each end match with the original minor axis defined for the cylinder, the line that you drew in the beginning. To find the true minor axis of an ellipse, you need to find the line that goes through the center of the ellipse along the shortest path. Another way to think about it is, there are two lines that divide an ellipse into two equal halves, such that when you fold one half over the other, they completely overlap. These are the minor and major axis lines of the ellipse. The minor axis is the shorter of the two. Since there are two ellipses, there are two minor axis lines that you need to make for each cylinder.

    I've also found that finding the halfway point between the two lines representing the side of the cylinder helps in determining the center of the ellipse, and therefore roughly where the minor axis is. This is not 100% reliable, so good judgment is still required to figure out the minor axis.

    The minor axis that you have drawn for the cylinder should not factor into this at all.

    Checking your work, it seems like for the most part you are getting the true minor axis correct. There are a few that seem significantly out of place, like 6 and 17, make sure that the line is going through the center.

    Do we use the ruler to measure and check if axis is correctly in the middle?

    You can if you want, and it works for the most part, but unfortunately unless your ellipses are perfect there is no guarantee that the minor axis lies in the middle between the two sides of the cylinder.

    I also have problems to vary the degree of the ellipse. Is there any warm-up/ preparation exercice that could help me?

    The funnels exercise is by far the best warm-up for this. You practice both aligning ellipses to a minor axis as well as varying the size and degree of the ellipse, both of which are important to drawing cylinders in perspective.

    I also wanted to give some advice for this challenge in general:

    • So the prerequisite for this challenge is the completion of lesson 2. I've noticed that you have not completed lesson 2 yet, as the TA critiquing has assigned you some revisions. You will need to finish those first before you can work on this challenge. In addition, the recommendation for this challenge is the completion of lesson 5 (constructing animals). Although lessons 3 - 5 do not specifically deal with ellipses, practicing them in those lessons and the warmups will help when making the ellipses for this challenge.

    • There are some issues with the linework here. You do not draw through all of your ellipses (remember you need to draw through every single one) and your straight lines are kind of wobbly, and inaccurate. Inaccurate straight lines are normal to start out with, but by the point of this challenge you should have enough practice to make them more accurate. Your ellipses are not very even, perhaps due to not drawing through them. Make sure you are practicing lines and ellipses in your warmups.

    • The closer end of a cylinder is larger, due to perspective, and has less degree, as seen here. In several of these cylinders, the larger side has larger degree. This breaks the rules of perspective.

    • You are drawing the sides of your cylinders very long and the sides very small. The smaller ellipses make it more difficult to construct proper ellipses. Instead, you want the ends of your cylinder to be big and the sides to be about medium length (though it is good to vary the length of your cylinders).

    • You are varying foreshortening somewhat, but it is generally pretty shallow foreshortening. You should try more dramatic foreshortening as well. Remember that you are required to vary the amount of foreshortening throughout the set.

    To summarize, you will need to first finish your lesson 2 revisions before starting this challenge. I do recommend also finishing lessons 3 - 5 first, though that is not required. You will also need to work on linework in your warmups, and may want to review how perspective applies to cylinders.

    Hope this helps.

    4:21 PM, Friday September 3rd 2021

    Sorry, I didn't mean to imply that boxes or their square faces are not part of the purpose of the challenge. I meant that in the case in which a "not circle in 3d space" ellipse is drawn in a box face, while technically the box face in some cases can be interpreted as square, such a case is not really important to the challenge, since it's not really possible to tell without further context.

    If you're running into the case where the minor axis of one (or both) of the cylinder's faces are going off in a completely different direction, like towards one of the other vanishing points instead of the correct one, I believe this is due to the proportions of the face of the box being significantly off (as in, much wider than it is long, or vice versa). It's kind of hard to tell without an example though. I've run into a few situations like this, and it's usually because my box face was very rectangular.

    EDIT: A second case for the minor/major axis switching is due to the cylinder face being very close to circular (in 2d), so a small change can cause the minor axis to change significantly. Don't think there's much to do in this case other than to try to be more accurate with the ellipses or boxes.

    0 users agree
    1:59 PM, Friday September 3rd 2021

    Hi! To try to answer your questions:

    1. I believe that only a cylinder by itself is open to interpretation in that way. In a box, if the contact points of the ellipses at the end of the cylinder (along with its minor axis) go towards the respective vanishing points of the box, then the cylinder has circular ends, and the box has square ends. In all other cases, the cylinder does not have circular ends. I think the box in this case is technically open to interpretation, but since creating these cases is not the goal of the exercise, I don't think it helps much.

    2. While cylinders do have this property, I do believe it is a property of perspective in general. For example, this note on the 250 box challenge states that the further box side has a greater proportional width compared to the closer side. The corresponding property in ellipses would be a wider degree, or a larger minor to major axis ratio. On a more personal note, I didn't really use this property to construct my cylinders in boxes.

    If I may offer some advice, I think one major thing that helped me in this challenge is realizing that while it's impossible to draw a circle that touches all 4 sides of a rectangle, it's perfectly possible to draw an oval that touches all 4 sides of a square. Therefore I found that figuring out "ideal" contact points after drawing the box (and later on, while plotting out points for the box), and trying to align the ellipses to those points, helped me create circular ended cylinders. It's still not going to work if the boxes don't have square ends, but the error shown in the line extensions were more useful to me.

    Hope this helps!

    3:34 AM, Wednesday August 25th 2021

    Thank you very much!

    3 users agree
    2:53 PM, Sunday August 8th 2021

    Hi! So my first recommendation is to use easier references for the animals. Remember the goal of the lesson is not to learn how to draw animals, but rather to use drawing animals as an exercise to learn construction. Worrying about things like foreshortening or harder orientations would detract from learning the primary goals of the lesson, and is an unnecessary challenge.

    Of course, all of that being said, you are completely free to challenge yourself as long as it doesn't take away from learning the main concepts in the lesson. How I approached drawing an animal from 3/4 view is to not worry about foreshortening when drawing the individual forms, but rather capture that foreshortening in the size of the form relative to other forms.

    For example, when placing down the major masses, assuming the animal is coming towards the viewer, I would make the head a bit larger than normal, and the pelvic mass a bit smaller than normal. Same with the legs, while there's no foreshortening within the leg itself, there would be a size difference between the two pairs of legs.

    More important than the foreshortening I feel is capturing the correct angles (or degrees when it comes to the major masses and contours). For example, the ribcage and pelvic masses would be a lot more circular in an animal seen head on compared to in profile. In addition, most quadrupeds in 3/4 view tend to have their pelvic mass higher on the page than their ribcage mass (unless they're sitting down or standing). A contour curve across the middle of the torso sausage I've found is also an effective way of really capturing how the animal is oriented. Finally, don't forget that the contour curves defining the intersections between forms are also a great way to define the orientations of forms.

    Hope this helps!

    8:41 PM, Saturday August 7th 2021

    So you seem to have submitted all of the line exercises, but lesson 1 consists of 3 sections: lines, ellipses, and boxes, each section having their own exercises. Only submitting the lines exercises therefore is technically a partial submission.

    When you go to submit homework for a lesson, there should be a checklist of the exercises to submit. Only when all of the exercises on that checklist are checked does it count as a "full" submission for that lesson.

    Hope this helps!

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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.

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