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12:24 AM, Friday April 2nd 2021

I'll be the TA handling your Lesson 2 critique.

You're making progress towards understanding the concepts introduced in this lesson and hopefully this critique will help you in your future attempts.

Something I notice through your submission is that all your work is quite loose but you don't have many instances where your line work isn't confident. This combined with some spots where it appears you lack control of your lines and where your lines fade leads me to believe that you may be drawing a bit too quickly. We want to be drawing just quickly enough that our lines remain confident but slow enough that we remain in control, whipping our pen around the page doesn't give us the much space to improve our accuracy or make conscious choices.

  • Starting off in the arrows section your lines are looking smoothly and confidently drawn (although the rate at which they change direction so quickly plays into the lack of control I mentioned earlier). There are spots where your arrows bulge/narrow suddenly, this is an issue because it gives the impression that your arrows are stretching which hurts their solidity. Remember that as our arrows move closer to the viewer we want them to widen consistently. This is a good exercise to experiment with line weight in but when applying it we want to make sure we do subtly to key areas like overlaps to give clarity to our forms. Here are some things to look out for when applying line weight, and here are some reminders on how to apply it subtly. I'd like you to experiment more with foreshortening in your future attempts, by utilizing it in both the arrows themselves as well as the negative space between their curves we can create a stronger illusion of an object moving through 3D space as demonstrated here.

  • Moving into the organic forms with contours exercise your forms are getting a bit too complex (or too simple and close to an oval). We want to create our forms with both ends being the same size and to avoid any pinching, bloating, or stretching along the form's length as discussed here. You're keeping your line work confident here which is great, if you feel uncomfortable working with contours still don't stress with more mileage it'll become more natural. I'd like you to try and push your contours so they hook back into the form more as you can see here. Speaking of contours you're doing a good job trying to shift the degree of your contours so far, be sure to keep experimenting. The degree of a contour line basically represents the orientation of that cross-section in space, relative to the viewer, and as we slide along the sausage form, the cross section is either going to open up (allowing us to see more of it) or turn away from the viewer (allowing us to see less), as shown here.

  • In the texture exercises you're focusing largely on outlines, form shading, and negative space rather than cast shadows created by forms along the texture itself. This makes it difficult to create gradients with implied information which we could then use to create focal points in more complex pieces, by doing so we can prevent our viewers from being visually overwhelmed with too much detail. For more on the importance of focusing on cast shadows read here. I'd also like to quickly direct you to this image which shows that when we're working with thin line like textures if we outline and fill the shadow we will create a much more dynamic texture than simply drawing lines.

  • If you feel like you don't fully grasp form intersections just yet don't worry, you're on the right track but right now this exercise is just meant to get students to start thinking about how their forms relate to one another in 3D space, and how to define those relationships on the page. We'll be going over them more in the upcoming lessons. Your forms here appear a bit hastily done, it looks like you needed more time planning them before drawing them. Remember that whether our goal is to draw 1 form or 100, we want to be giving each line the same amount of time planning/ghosting before drawing it.

  • While wrapping up your submission with the organic intersections exercise you do a great job demonstrating that your sense of 3D space is developing as your forms begin to wrap around each other believably. You're keeping your forms simple and easy to work with which is a good strategy to help produce good results. When drawing your shadows you don't always push them far enough to cast, instead they mostly hug the form creating them, try pushing them further. It appears like your shadows aren't following a consistent light source, I recommend pushing your light source to the top left or right corner of the page to start with, it's easier than working with a light directly above your form pile.

I won't be moving you on to the next lesson just yet, each lesson builds upon each other and I'd like to make sure you understand a few of these concepts a bit more before potentially creating more problems down the road.

With that being said I'd like you to please re-read and complete:

-2 page of the organic forms with contours exercise.

Keep them simple, hook your contours back into the form and remember you want to be drawing just quickly enough to keep your lines confident but to give yourself control.

Once you've completed the pages mentioned above reply to this critique with a link to them, I'll go over them and address anything that needs to be worked on and once you've shown you're ready for the next lesson I'll move you on.

I look forward to seeing your work.

Next Steps:

Please re-read and complete:

-2 page of the organic forms with contours exercise.

When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
11:16 PM, Monday April 5th 2021

Thank you so much for your in depth critique! Here is my two pages: https://imgur.com/a/tsKeRQH

I noticed upon attempting further divisions, there is a lot of inconsistency, likely due to doing contours for both of these. I would like more advice on getting control and confident lines if you wouldn't mind. Thank you!

9:01 AM, Tuesday April 6th 2021

These are definitely a step in the right direction. As long as you're taking your time to ghost and plan your lines and then draw them confidently your accuracy and control will improve with mileage. A lot of drawing is experimentation and becoming comfortable with concepts by using them a lot, so if you find that you're contours aren't always lining up just the way you want them too remember what you should be aiming for and try to adjust on your next attempt. Eventually you'll find a balance of the speed you draw being accurate while maintaining confidence and at that point it's just about building up your muscle memory.

I'll be moving you on to the next lesson, keep practicing previous exercises as warm ups and good luck in lesson 3!

Next Steps:

Keep practicing previous exercises as warm ups.

Move on to lesson 3.

This critique marks this lesson as complete.
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Staedtler Pigment Liners

Staedtler Pigment Liners

These are what I use when doing these exercises. They usually run somewhere in the middle of the price/quality range, and are often sold in sets of different line weights - remember that for the Drawabox lessons, we only really use the 0.5s, so try and find sets that sell only one size.

Alternatively, if at all possible, going to an art supply store and buying the pens in person is often better because they'll generally sell them individually and allow you to test them out before you buy (to weed out any duds).

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