Lesson 6: Applying Construction to Everyday Objects

9:28 PM, Friday June 24th 2022

Draw-a-box Lesson 6 Homework - Album on Imgur

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Here are my everyday objects! They get progressively less ugly and (hopefully) progressively more accurate with each page, so I'm happy about that. I still have trouble nailing ellipses -- they either wind up smooth OR accurate, but usually not both. Just need more practice, I think, even after all those cylinders... (I tried slowing down a bit in favor of accuracy a couple times here, but the results are definitely regrettable.)

Many of my form intersections seem wrong, but I don't fully understand how to fix them. I think I just need to see a lot more examples of arbitrary form intersections for it to start making sense to me. (I watched the lesson video sooo many times, too!)

On the plus side, the more "regular" form intersections I encountered in drawing my everyday objects were much easier for me to understand, and I think I (mostly) got them correct.

I appreciate any feedback... thank you!

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9:03 PM, Friday July 1st 2022

Very nice work! Starting with your form intersections, you say that your intersections seem wrong, but generally speaking they're all correct. While that seems wonderful, it begs the question why you think they seem wrong. If you don't have any specific idea of which ones are off, then that kind of statement is more commonly the kind of self-protective self-critique that I talk about in this relatively recent video in Lesson 0. That is not useful to anyone, because it's non-specific. It does not help you to reflect upon your own work, and it does not help me to understand where you're coming from.

If you have concerns about an aspect of your work, it's up to you to consider them and turn them into a specific question to ask - or, to accept that they are more than likely coming from a place of fear and self-consciousness that will only serve to hold you back.

Continuing onto your object constructions, you've done a similarly solid job here. This lesson is all about precision. Where the previous lessons up until this point have all involved organic structures, we've generally been working in a reactive manner. Say if we put down an initial cranial mass that is a little too big, then we simply end up with a larger head. Whatever happens, we go with the flow. But here, things are a little different - everything gets analyzed and plotted out ahead of time. Instead of working from outside-in (to where the final result is built out over time), here we more often than not end up working outside-in, laying out the overall volumes, and then gradually breaking them down, always ensuring that our decisions are made before marks go down.

Precision is often conflated with accuracy, but they're actually two different things (at least insofar as I use the terms here). Where accuracy speaks to how close you were to executing the mark you intended to, precision actually has nothing to do with putting the mark down on the page. It's about the steps you take beforehand to declare those intentions.

So for example, if we look at the ghosting method, when going through the planning phase of a straight line, we can place a start/end point down. This increases the precision of our drawing, by declaring what we intend to do. From there the mark may miss those points, or it may nail them, it may overshoot, or whatever else - but prior to any of that, we have declared our intent, explaining our thought process, and in so doing, ensuring that we ourselves are acting on that clearly defined intent, rather than just putting marks down and then figuring things out as we go.

In our constructions here, we build up precision primarily through the use of the subdivisions. These allow us to meaningfully study the proportions of our intended object in two dimensions with an orthographic study, then apply those same proportions to the object in three dimensions.

Now, there are a few minor points I want to call out in regards to your work - really just things to keep in mind as you push forwards:

  • When freehanding your ellipses, you're still expected to apply the ghosting method (which means planning/preparing first before executing with a confident stroke, rather than the kind of hesitant one we see for the base here). And of course, we have to be drawing through those ellipses two full times as well.

  • There seems to be an absence of symmetry on this toilet. If we look at the front, the right side cuts back from the initial bounding box, but the left side seems to only have a gently rounded corner, sticking more closely to that side. Now I'm assuming that this is a mistake (and that the toilet itself is not asymmetrical) in which case, as shown here you could have mirrored the distance by which the edge along the right was inset into the front face across to the other side, using the mirroring technique.

  • Here it appears that you did not draw through your box, so we end up without the additional information we'd have about the opposite side of the form. While it didn't hurt your construction too much, that is useful information for the purposes of these exercises.

  • When it comes to precision, it's all about deciding ahead of time, and avoiding eyeballing/estimating things. There are definitely circumstances, though very few, where you've hit a point where you likely decided "I've been precise enough" and just kind of slapped some finishing touches on there. The handles on the drawers here are one example of this. While this is not a big deal for this lesson, going forward you'll want to keep pushing your "threshold" for how much precision you're willing to work with farther, even identifying the specific distances along a given dimension of a form where a given feature (like a drawer handle) should start and end. Or, at the very least, using the mirroring technique from the previous point to place them symmetrically relative to one another when you've got two laid out like this.

  • Lastly, keep working on the construction of those initial bounding boxes by working on the kinds of freely rotated boxes we introduced in the box challenge (along with the line extensions) in your warmups. That'll help you continue to improve on the estimation of your convergences, which at times can be wonky. No exercise we introduce throughout this course is ever going to be left behind - everything is continually practiced going forwards.

Anyway, that's about it. I'll go ahead and mark this lesson as complete.

Next Steps:

Feel free to move onto the 25 wheel challenge, which is a prerequisite for lesson 7.

This critique marks this lesson as complete.
9:29 PM, Saturday July 2nd 2022

Thank you, Uncomfortable! Really useful feedback, as always. I'm amazed at how well you call out the good/bad/ugly... and even the lazy, haha. (Can't get away with anything!)

Also, I realize in retrospect that I submitted this on the first day of the promptathon... apologies! I somehow missed the giant damn banner :(

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