4:31 PM, Monday January 3rd 2022
Thank you for your kind words!
Thank you for your kind words!
Thank you very much for your critique, It definitely clears up a few things for me and gives me a better understanding of things I should focus on when tackling these concepts again.
Congratulations on finishing the 250 boxes challenge, Doctormein! It was an arduous task, but you pushed through and came out victorious, no matter how many bumps you've encountered along the way or how many tears you've shed, you're stronger for it now and have the results to prove it ;)
I'm ThatOneMushroomGuy, and today I'll be looking over your work, let's get into it.
First, I would like to start out by telling you to please not add notes to your homework pages.
And also to get darker colored pens for extending your lines. Some of your pages have very light extension lines, which combined with the poor lighting makes it difficult to analyze some of your boxes, even some cheap red and blue ballpoint pens will do. And when you take a photo, make sure to take it during the day and have as much natural light as possible.
You've extended your lines in the correct direction. However, there are some boxes with extension lines missing, like box 246, 247 and 248. Remember to always add them in.
Your lines are looking smooth and confidently drawn throughout the entire challenge, good job! It's very clear that you're making good use of the ghosting method.
While it is optional, adding lineweight around the silhouette of the box is great practice for superimposed lines, which become very important for L3+, so it's good to see that you're already adding it, and to great effect.
Your hatching is another point where you exceed at by going the extra mile to carefully add it in with the ghosting method, it definitely adds to your boxes and makes them feel much more finished, along with being great extra practice.
When it comes to your box construction, there isn't much to point out, you've done really well! Your convergences for the most part are really good. But of course, there's always a thing or two to improve, here are a few things I believe you should pay a bit more attention to:
Nonetheless I'll leave you with this reminder, a diagram showing the relation between each line in a set, as you can see, the inner lines will be very similar unless the box is long, while the outer lines can vary a lot depending on the vanishing point.
Overall, you've done really well in this challenge and have shown noticeable improvement. I'm sure that you're ready for the advanced box exercises, as well as Lesson 2.
I'll be marking this lesson as complete.
Don't forget to add these exercises to your list of warm ups.
Move on to Lesson 2.
Congratulations on finishing the 250 boxes challenge, Retsamoomeht! It was an arduous task, but you pushed through and came out victorious in the end. I'm ThatOneMushroomGuy and for your effort, today I'll be looking over your work, without further ado, let's get into it.
What you've done well
You started off extending your lines in the wrong direction, but very quickly you fixed this and started extending them correctly.
Your lines are looking smooth and confidently drawn. You're making good use of the ghosting method.
You've got a nice variation of box sizes and proportions.
What to improve upon
You didn't add lineweight around the silhouette of your boxes. While it is optional, it's great practice for superimposed lines, which become very important for Lesson 3 onwards, so it's good to get as much practice as you can as early as possible.
Your hatching is haphazardly done throughout the entire challenge. This is very common as students become impatient once they finish their page and wish to simply move on. However, you've drawn 250 boxes, what is taking a minute more to make sure it's nice and clean? Not only will ghosting your hatching lines and making sure that they're nice and tidy build patience and discipline, it's great extra practice.
You struggle a lot with your inner corners and diverging lines, as well as lines converging in pairs instead of in a set of 4. This is another common mistake that students face. Here is a video by Scyllastew, it outlines a useful method of using dots to estimate the convergences before committing to a line, which helps create a less distorted box. And here is a diagram showing the relation between each line in a set, as you can see, the inner lines will be very similar unless the box is long, while the outer lines can vary a lot depending on the vanishing point.
Similar looking boxes, while it seems you attempted a variety of box sizes and shapes, you still stuck mostly with shallow perspective when you could have used some of your boxes to attempt more dramatic foreshortening.
Overall, you committed a few mistakes, but throughout the entirety of the challenge your boxes have improved, and I have no doubt that if you continue practicing them during your warm ups you'll improve even further.
I'll be marking this lesson as complete, feel free to move on to Lesson 2.
Don't forget to keep practicing these exercises during your warm ups!
Move on to Lesson 2.
Congrats on finishing Lesson 4! I'm ThatOneMushroomGuy and today I'll be providing your work with some critique. I hope that my advice aids you in your Drawabox Journey.
Organic Forms with Contours
I would like to start by pointing out something that, while it's not quite a mistake, can still hinder your improvement:
Grinding a single sausage rotation. There's at least three most important ones, and you should practice all of them. Here's a diagram that shows the different sausage rotations possible.
A method you can use to address this is by using dots to plan out the general sausage shape and then ghost it.
For your insect constructions I would like to start by saying that you've done a phenomenal job with them! I don't think there is much to critique here as you've employed the construction method correctly.
Here are the few things I see that you can improve however:
In general, you're drawing way too small, which limits the amount of detail that you can add before making it look crowded, and makes it harder to work through constructional problems as things get confusing incredibly quickly.
For Insect 6, you drew the weird things are it's end as shapes, when could have used the branch method for drawing the to draw it as forms, as well as drawing the sting(?) as a form, but that might have been because of how small the drawing was ( which is why it's better to draw it big ).
For Insect 17, you drew the spikes on it's back as shapes instead of 3d forms, which flattened it out. A way you could have tackled it instead using forms would be with cones.
Sometimes you have trouble with layered segmentation, here is a demo on how to approach layered segmentation.
You also struggle with applying texture. Here is an informal demo on how to approach texture when drawing insects.
I would like to elaborate a bit more on this point. Remember that texture doesn't have to be applied to the entirety of the form because texture, just like construction, has a job to achieve which is visually communicating how it would feel to touch the surface. We as the artists can strategically place a few hairs and bumps to convey what the texture of the surface is, but by not completely filling in the form with texture we create points of detail and points of rest, which makes it easier on the eyes of the viewer while ultimately reaching our goal.
Overall, I believe you understood the purpose of these exercises and executed them properly, once you get past a few hurdles your work will go from great to incredible so keep practicing!
I'll mark this lesson as complete.
Move on to Lesson 5.
Thank you for sending me your revisions, they look much better. I'll be marking this lesson as complete.
Just a couple of points:
Since it's only been a day since I've asked for your revisions and you already replied, I assume you must have finished it all very quickly. Our brains actually absorb information much better when it's spaced out throughout several days, if you look to improve, doing your pages over several days instead of in one go will make sure you retain much more of the lesson content in the long run.
When drawing circular and elliptical shapes, don't forget to ghost them two times.
Lineweight goes a long way! Don't forget to use it to separate your forms and help distinguish them from each other.
Move on to Lesson 5.
Congrats on finishing Lesson 4! I'm ThatOneMushroomGuy and today I will be providing your homework with some critique. I hope that it proves helpful to you in your art journey.
Organic Forms with contours
To start off I'd like to point out something that isn't quite a mistake, but nonetheless can be harmful to your improvement: Grinding a single sausage rotation. There's at least three most important ones, and you should be aware of them.
Here is a diagram that shows the different sausage rotations.
You're doing a good job of keeping most of your sausages the desired shape. But sometimes they still end up misshapen, with their ends pointy or elongated. Since you seem to be doing well already, just keep in mind the characteristics of simple sausages and continue practicing until they become more consistent.
When it comes to your contours they're kept nicely within the form's bounds, but they suffer by hardly having any variation, which ends up flattening the sausage. Remember that the degree of each circular cross-section gets wider as it moves away from the viewer as shown here
Along with the resources linked below, you can also check out the video on ellipses on the Drawabox youtube channel https://youtu.be/tHJ3rzk6kno to refresh your memory on the topic.
Photos by user 'Slate' on the Drawabox discord server, showing the degree of change in ellipses' degrees on a cylindrical form.
For your Insect Constructions I'm afraid that you'd made quite a few fundamental mistakes, which ended up being present and harmful to most of your homework pages. I will start by talking about the fact that you don't follow construction principles such as starting with simple forms and then building on top of them.
Insect 10 and 8 for example, have hardly any construction on their heads, when you can see here in this demo that it's possible to breakdown insect heads ( in this case, an ant's ) into much simpler forms and then build on top of them.
For Insect 7 the claws are not drawn as forms, https://drawabox.com/lesson/4/7/claw here is a demo that shows how claws can be constructed. On Insect 8, their entire body seems to be made of shapes instead of forms. For Insect 9 the thorax which could be a circle, was not drawn, neither was the abdomen drawn as a shape first, it seems you jumped to a complex body shape too soon instead of separating it in simple forms first. The same is true for the ant.
In Insect 1, the ladybug, after constructing the initial forms for the abdomen you proceed to undermine them by cutting into them. Always work additionally on your constructions, because when we don't we end up with a flat shape instead of a solid form.
The other mistake is seen on the legs of your insects, as you can see in this demo https://d15v304a6xpq4b.cloudfront.net/lesson_images/a20182ab.jpg legs on Drawabox must be constructed using the sausage method. But in your insect constructions you use elongated ovals or complex, bulging forms instead. The former takes away the gesture of the insect's legs and stiffens them, while the latter is detrimental to your construction as, since it's easier to lose control of the leg's volume and form, it hurts the leg's solidity and makes it look flat.
For example on Insect 4 the first segment of the right front leg is significantly thicker than the left leg's equivalent segment. And the back leg feels like a flat shape on a piece of paper instead of a solid form because of the way it was drawn, and especially since the rest of the leg is so thin it contributes to the lack of illusion that the shapes are 3D forms.
The only insect that doesn't suffer from this is the Wasp Demo, as you seem to have followed the instructions there.
Instead of attempting complexity right off the bat, we can use the sausage leg method and then build on top of our initial construction as shown here:
You also struggle with adding segmentation to your drawings, here is a demo showing how it can be done: https://drawabox.com/lesson/4/7/layeredsegmentation
Lastly, I wish to point out that filling in your back legs completely makes it difficult to analyze if you employed the construction methods correctly, it also creates a point of detail and distracts the viewer by directing their attention to that point, when their focus should be on the head and main body.
From the Black Widow demo:
"You'll also notice that for the back legs, I added some very simple, straight hatching. Straight hatching on a rounded object is usually a no-no, because it'll flatten your form out completely. In this case, that's what I want. It's a design choice to help push those legs back in terms of importance. I want the viewer's eye to glaze over those details in favour of the legs closer to them."
It is my opinion that, since so many fundamentals weren't followed, you're not ready for Lesson 5 and it's in your best interest to read over the entirety of Lesson 4 again and watch the demos.
Once that is done, please reply with
1 page of the informal lobster demo
1 page of the informal shrimp demo
4 pages of your own insect constructions.
1 Page of the Informal Lobster Demo.
1 Page of the Informal Shrimp Demo.
4 pages of your own insect Constructions.
In my opinion your pages of revisions feel incredibly rushed when compared to your other pages, it doesn't seem like you put all the effort you could have into it. Since these are messier and have less arrows and sausages, to me it comes across as if you just did the bare minimum to fill the page.
I'm not sure why but in case you need to hear this: sometimes putting too much effort into a piece or homework is draining and exhausting, and that's okay, it's okay to take a break if you know you're going to rush a piece. This is why we encourage others do it at their own pace and do these exercises to the best of their current ability, if you rush to just "get it done" you won't get as much quality study from your session. Trust me, you'll get much more out of it if you slow down a bit.
The hatching of your arrows is much more chaotic and overall less clean and tidy than in your first pages, and with the arrows overlapping over other arrows with no superimposed lines on some of them makes it hard to read what line belongs to what arrow. Remember the hatching should be neat and go from one end to the next, and not past it. You still face major size consistency problems and problems with naturally bending your arrows.
There is a lot of blank space in your organic intersections page that could have been used for extra sausages and so extra practice, and your shadows don't follow the form of the sausage underneath them.
I don't like beating a dead horse so I'll mark your homework page as complete, but I'd really like you to slow down a bit.
Move on to Lesson 3, but be mindful of bad habits such as rushing, reread the L2 material especially on arrows before doing any warm ups and homework pages for L3.
Hello Allipses, congrats on finishing Lesson 2! It is quite a daunting lesson especially if you've never been introduced to textures before, but you managed to finish it! I'll be critiquing some of your work today, I hope you find my advice helpful.
Starting off with
Thinking in 3d Section
You're doing a good job of keeping your linework confident. Your shading can definitely use some more work and planning put into it, as of now it's very confusing in it's placement, especially when it's on both sides of the arrow, which breaks the illusion that one part is in front of the other.
Onto your arrow's construction, your edges don't overlap when they should, which makes your arrow look distorted as they bend unnaturally.
Here's a demonstration, it's not the best because it's just a quick one but I hope it explains what I mean more clearly.
Another struggle you face is keeping your arrow's size, both in width and length consistent, they bulge and narrow suddenly when they shouldn't, they get smaller at the front or bigger at the back, they are inconsistent at the folds, all of this is detrimental to the illusion we're trying to paint of these arrows: objects of a consistent size moving freely through 3d space.
Keep in mind that with perspective, when something is further away it'll become smaller and if it's closer to the viewer it'll get bigger. To improve on this, instead of doing the second curve in one motion, you can try building it in segments with the ghosting method, this way you can check if the size is consistent before committing to a line.
I suggest that when you tackle this exercise again during your warm ups, that you make arrows that overlap more, diminishing the negative space between each overlap. As of now many of your arrows feel very safe and similar. It's important for us, as artists, to always push ourselves if we want to improve.
Moving on to your organic forms, I'd like to start off by pointing out something that isn't a mistake but can be hurtful to your improvement: Grinding a single sausage rotation. There's three most important ones and you should practice all of them.
Many of your sausages don't keep the desired sausage shape of two balls connected by a cylinder of consistent width, your sausage ends are also elongated or pointy, when they should be round.
You can try to address this by ghosting your sausages by adding some dots that follow the general sausage shape and using them as guidelines during your ghosting, as well as practicing more during warm ups.
Your ellipses and contours have hardly any variation, and you forget to draw through some of your ellipses twice.
Photos by user 'Slate' on the drawabox discord server, showing the degree of change in ellipses' degrees on a cylindrical form.
And to finish this section, good job on keeping the ellipses and contours within bounds.
Texture and Detail Section
The biggest mistake you make on this exercises that follows you into the next is not actually drawing cast shadows, instead you rely on thin outlines to convey your texture. Let's remember what are cast shadows for a second:
"Cast shadows occur when a form blocks the light. The key thing here is that where form shading occurs on the form in question itself, cast shadows are projected onto another surface.
Texture is made up of the little forms that sit along the surface of a given object, and each of these textural forms can cast shadows. In fact, all of the lines we perceive as being part of a texture are generally just that: shadows.
All of the bumps, the changes in topography (where the surface rises or falls), little holes or scratches, etc. can all be thought of as independent bits of form that are added to or taken away from the surface of our object, and each one interacts with the light that is being shined upon it."
So when thinking of a shadow you need to think of things like how big is the form that is casting the shadow? What is it's shape? How close or far away is the lightsource? A lightsource directly to the left will cast a very big and elongated shadow to the right, for example, and the part that is close to the lightsource won't be in shadow and so, shouldn't be enclosed.
And to make shadows more dynamic, you should approach them like this instead:
On the final column you do a good job of hiding the black bar, but it's very visible and easy to spot on the last row. Your transition is also harsh or non-existent on the other parts of the gradient when it should be seamless. Density detail is a very valuable tool we can utilize to show how much shadow an object is receiving without drawing it explicitly, it also allows us to create points of focus for our viewers and make it easier on their eyes.
Some of your shadows, like the ones on the second row, also extend downwards, which breaks the illusion as the lightsource is coming from the right and therefore all shadows will extend to the left.
For this exercise you rely too much on drawing outlines and using negative space to create your textures rather than cast shadows, which is why it gets difficult to create a good gradient and focal points of detail. You're also struggling with keeping the underlying form in mind and using that information to wrap your textures around your sausages, although you do improve upon both of these things on your second page, so good job!
Here, if you scroll a bit through this page you will find some renders of tree bark on spheres and a cylinder, you can also search on your own and find more resources of textures rendered on spheres and analyze them to understand better how textures on non flat forms work.
I believe that this part of your submission was rushed as there are some parts of the sausages that could have been used for another texture or two, but you left it blank. This part of your homework would have benefited more from you taking more time with each individual texture, as of now these pages look unfinished.
The biggest problem you face with this exercise is the different foreshortening in your forms, you've especially got stretched and distorted pyramids and cylinders, but it happens to your boxes as well, especially on the back end. Your forms must have the same rate of foreshortening if you want them to feel like they belong together in the same scene.
You also forget some important drawabox principles by redoing many lines and by adding lineweight to the entire form instead of just the intersection where your forms meet.
I would like you to focus more on making all your forms look like they exist within the same scene before worrying too much about your intersections, and don't forget about shading one side so it's clearer how the form is turned towards the viewer.
Organic form intersections
I commend you for understanding the purpose of this exercise and making your sausages wrap around each other in a believable way. Your sausage forms also seem to have improved a lot on consistency, good job!
Your troubles here are the contours flattening the form and your shadows, your lightsource is inconsistent and your shadows don't follow the form of the sausage they're being cast on to. They're flat when they should be curved.
I believe that while you understood the purpose of many of these exercises you didn't always know to apply these concepts to your work. Although you should be proud of your improvements, I believe that if you take more time with each individual exercise you'll improve even further.
I won't be moving you to Lesson 3 yet, each lesson builds on top of one another and I'd like you to understand a few concepts more before having to apply them to increasingly complex subjects.
Please read over the organic forms section and organic intersections lesson then reply with:
• 1 page of organic arrows
• 1 page of organic intersections
Please reply with
1 page of organic arrows
1 page of organic forms intersections
I am so so sorry for leaving you waiting for so long! I took a small break from Dab but I'm back now.
I can definitely see improvement in your revisions, your forms look more 3D now and the organic intersections feel like they have more weight to them now.
There is not much I can add, there are a couple of mistakes here and there but I believe that you can improve upon them by simply adding these exercises to your warm up sessions.
I believe you are ready for L3.
Move on to Lesson 3.