Lesson 2: Contour Lines, Texture and Construction

11:13 AM, Saturday May 2nd 2020

DrawABox - Lesson 2 - Grain00 - Album on Imgur

: https://imgur.com/a/OK1HqEj

Post with 21 views. DrawABox - Lesson 2 - Grain00

I struggled with the organic forms and arrows, but have practiced them some more after those submissions and feel as they are much better than they were before. The texture section was relatively fun and I didn't struggle much, for the form intersections I felt I struggled the most, especially with newer forms such as cylinders,cones,spheres and pyramids, but I intend on improving my cylinders in the 250 cylinder challenge. As well as this the organic intersections I felt were ok. Thanks!

0 users agree
8:00 PM, Saturday May 2nd 2020

Starting with your arrows, you're doing a good job with both establishing an organic flow to these, as well as considering how perspective impacts not only the positive space (the width of your ribbon) but also the negative space in between the zigzagging sections. I'm glad to see that you've allowed that spacing to compress as we look farther back.

I do have two minor concerns with this however:

  • The hatching you've added to make greater sense of where the ribbon folds over itself is drawn a little sloppily - with any mark you put down on the page, take the time to execute it so that it feels intentional and planned. Any mark you deem worthy of drawing is worthy of being enough time to be done correctly. Otherwise you'll get into poor habits of rushing through things based on whether or not you deem them important.

  • You've constructed the ribbon's edges with individual overlapping segments - this is totally fine, and is actually something we get into further in Lesson 3's branches exercise. That said, I think that where those lines overlap we get the strongest impression of stiffness and hesitation in your linework, as though you're slowing down to trace over it more carefully. Make sure that every aspect of your execution is confident, and free from hesitation. Otherwise that stiffness will taint the edge as a whole, and can impede the fluidity of your arrow's movement.

Moving onto your organic forms with contour curves, I am seeing some very slight hesitation in how you draw your sausage forms. This is obviously because you're focusing on maintaining simple sausage forms, and you are succeeding at that for the most part (aside from a few deviations that I don't expect were intentional). You likely achieved success by slowing down your execution - that's entirely fine as long as you're still able to push through with confidence. The moment you see any wobbling and stiffness in your lines, increase your pace a little more until it goes away. It'll be a continuous tug-of-war, but as you continue practicing the use of the ghosting method you'll find yourself able to execute with confidence at slower and slower paces, gradually regaining that control.

On the topic of the ghosting method, make sure you're applying it to each and every mark you draw. Based on the looseness and inconsistent accuracy of your contour ellipses and contour curves, I suspect that you may not be applying the three steps (planning, preparing, execution) as consistently as you ought to. The ghosting method is critical not only to help you learn to execute with confidence, but also to back it up with greater control.

Also, you're not consistent in drawing through your ellipses either. You do it a fair bit of the time, but there are definitely ellipses where you neglect to do so.

Lastly, it does not appear that you're necessarily thinking about what degree a given ellipse or contour curve should be. Remember that the degree of a contour line represents the orientation in space of that cross-sectional slice relative to the direction the viewer is looking. As shown here, that changes when you sample at different points along a form, and so your contour lines will widen or narrow gradually as you slide along it.

You've largely done pretty well with your texture analyses. You've put a lot of effort into focusing primarily on drawing solid shapes rather than lines, and in doing so you've been able to do a good job of controlling the density of your textures. There is one issue that I want to point out - it's not a big deal, and you're already doing far better than I'd expect with this exercise, which itself is just an introduction to the concept of texture.

Specifically, in your third texture - the leaf one with all the veins - you end up filling in your veins with solid black. In doing so, you're still explicitly drawing those leaves - you're taking the positive space of a form and filling it in - this is not something that can reduce in density without actively changing the nature of the veins themselves. Instead, you should only reserve the marks you draw for the shadows those textural forms cast. You did this better in the actual study along the left side of the row, where you focused more on the shadows on either side of each vein. Basically our marks are cast into the negative space around a form, and when attempting to convey the presence of a specific form, you never draw within its positive space. You may end up drawing in it when capturing the shadows cast upon it by some other form, but never when attempting to capture that form specifically.

All that said, I think you continue to do an excellent job with your dissections, and go on to demonstrate a really solid grasp of texture and shadow. The issues of drawing within the positive space of a given textural form is still present in some cases - like your tire tread texture - but all in all you're still doing very well.

Your form intersections are largely doing well, though I feel like the linework is a bit rushed - again, I think it comes down to whether or not you're applying the ghosting method consistently to every single stroke you draw. I understand that fully employing the ghosting method can be time consuming, but it is absolutely worth it to build the muscle memory and good habits that will take you forward.

As far as your intersections go, they're a good start though you should have focused on drawing their visible portions, instead of drawing them all around. It's not that big of a deal, but I feel like it may have made this particularly challenging exercise a little bit easier. That said, the intersections themselves are merely an introduction to the concept of spatial relationships between forms, and I by no means expect students to be able to understand these just now. You've got a good start on them, and we will continue exploring them through the remainder of the course.

Lastly, I do have one issue with your organic intersections. You did a good job in making the forms themselves feel fairly solid, but the way in which each sausage form was drawn appears to entirely ignore physics. You've got forms that are floating rigidly in space without any support, and this greatly impedes the illusion that we're actually looking at something believable. They do feel 3D, but there's no sense of how they're actually interacting with one another, how they're slumping and sagging against each other and attempting to have their weight supported.

All in all you are doing a good job, but there are definitely some issues with the two organic form exercises that I'd like to sort out before we move on, so I'll be assigning a few more pages below.

Next Steps:

I'd like you to do the following:

  • 1 page of organic forms with contour ellipses

  • 1 page of organic forms with contour curves

  • 1 page of organic intersections

Take your time, apply the ghosting method to every single mark you draw, and with the organic intersections, take physics and gravity into account when determinig how each form would sit in relation to its neighbours.

When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
10:15 AM, Sunday May 3rd 2020
edited at 3:12 PM, May 3rd 2020

Thank you for the critique! My corrections are here https://imgur.com/a/dHvjLz0. I feel like the organic intersections were much better although I struggled trying to curve the sausages around the other sausages sometimes. For the organic forms I tried to vary the degrees of the ellipses so that they appear to be moving away/towards a certain direction more, mostly by making them go from smaller to big ellipses when sliding down the form. I also ghosted the forms, ellipses and center lines. Thanks!

edited at 3:12 PM, May 3rd 2020
5:29 PM, Sunday May 3rd 2020

Your organic intersections are definitely improved, although I have reservations about your organic forms with contour lines. Add to that the fact that you submitted your revisions in under 24 hours - while that doesn't necessarily mean anything bad on its own, it does often make me suspicious that a student may not be spending as much time as they could on each page, hammering to get everything done in a single session.

Your results there still show similar issues with accuracy and control of your contour lines. If you're perhaps uncertain of how much you should be pacing yourself when approaching this exercise, take a look at this video from ScyllaStew.

You can see there that she has some accuracy issues here and there too, so I'm not at all expecting perfect work, try and match the sort of patient, purposeful pacing with which she works through each individual mark.

Before I mark this lesson as complete, I'd like you to do just one more organic form with contour ellipses, and one more with contour curves. That's a total of just two sausage forms, so make sure you take as much time as you need to draw each mark as well as you can.

Next Steps:

Two more sausage forms - one with contour ellipses, one with contour curves.

When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
6:31 PM, Sunday May 3rd 2020
edited at 6:52 PM, May 3rd 2020

Hello, thanks for the critique again, I wasn't intentionally rushing through the exercises (as I have loads of time on my hands) although admittedly I felt I was going too fast through one page. I spent the last 35 mins on these pages https://imgur.com/a/ZMOwGSj sorry if they still have the error, i've spent ages today trying to perfect them but still can't get it right. Thanks!

EDIT: Sorry I've just looked at the next steps again and it said two more sausage forms, not two more pages. Sorry, i'll do those as well

edited at 6:52 PM, May 3rd 2020
View more comments in this thread
This is an advertisement. Most of the links here are part of Amazon's affiliate program (unless otherwise stated), which helps support this website. It's also more than that - it's a hand-picked recommendation of something I've used myself. If you're interested, here is a full list.
The Art of Brom

The Art of Brom

Here we're getting into the subjective - Gerald Brom is one of my favourite artists (and a pretty fantastic novelist!). That said, if I recommended art books just for the beautiful images contained therein, my list of recommendations would be miles long.

The reason this book is close to my heart is because of its introduction, where Brom goes explains in detail just how he went from being an army brat to one of the most highly respected dark fantasy artists in the world today. I believe that one's work is flavoured by their life's experiences, and discovering the roots from which other artists hail can help give one perspective on their own beginnings, and perhaps their eventual destination as well.

This website uses cookies. You can read more about what we do with them, read our privacy policy.