Lesson 4: Applying Construction to Insects and Arachnids

10:24 PM, Saturday February 1st 2020

DrawABox Lesson 4 Submission - Album on Imgur

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Post with 26 views. DrawABox Lesson 4 Submission

Please see the link for my Lesson 4 submission.

One thing I wasn't quite sure of was when it was appropriate (or allowed, really) to utilize organic forms as a base for the insect's structure, instead of geometric ones. I noticed you had done so in your informal demo "The turning of form" with the beetle drawing, so I attempted it a few times throughout my homework.

I think at first I feared that if I simply drew down an outline of the particular body part as an organic form, it would be difficult to determine how it exists in 3D space, but applying some simple contours helped. I figured I'd ask your thoughts on this.

Thank you!

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1:06 AM, Sunday February 2nd 2020

I mostly see these utilizing organic sausage forms rather than pure geometric forms, so I think you're good on that! I believe I have also seen some contours utilized on bug sausages, though that is less common.

The key is that you want to have gained the ability to look at an arthropod and see the segmented bits that make up their bodies, since it is easier to see those parts on a creature that already has the parts segmented out for you. The animals in lesson 5 require you to be able to see those organic forms past the fur and feathers and skin.

My main concern with your earlier bugs is that their proportions seem to be a little all over the place, but as you advance those proportions get a ton more accurate.

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11:02 PM, Sunday February 2nd 2020

Whew! Looks like you're my first critique in this new system. Let's hope it doesn't fall apart around me and catch fire.

Starting with your organic forms with contour curves, these are largely looking pretty good. There are a few places where you've got a bit of pinching through their midsection and some with swelling that doesn't match the whole "simple sausage" characteristics, but the majority of them do. I assume these are just minor slip-ups, so I'm not to worried about them.

With your actual insect constructions, I think these are looking largely very good. You're doing an excellent job of leveraging a lot of very simple, solid forms to create equally solid feeling complex objects. For the most part, you're adhering to the idea that each form exists tangibly in this three dimensional world, and that as you build them up on top of one another, they need to acknowledge each others' presence in space. You very clearly are developing a strong belief in the idea that the forms you're drawing are all three dimensional - and so a lot of the mistakes we make when we still feel our drawings are flat collections of line on a page are not present.

I'm especially pleased with how you make a note of wrapping forms around one another, and how along the bodies of your ants and wasps and other critters that have a lot of interlocking segmentation, those pieces of carapace all fit together quite believably.

One thing I noticed - and it's a very minor point - is that on drawings like the weevil, you've got a lot of little contour lines set along the lengths of your leg segments, and along the guy's nose. These contour lines don't really contribute a whole lot, and I feel that you're adding them out of the feeling that "i'm supposed to put these here" without entirely thinking about whether or not they're of any benefit. The more important contour lines will always be those that define the connection and relationship between forms (like those at the joints between the leg segments), and often they do enough to make the forms feel solid and 3D. With that already accomplished, there's no need for additional contour lines.

To that point, I do think there are still a number of places where your use of the sausage method. Keep in mind that, as shown in that diagram, we want to stick to using simple sausage forms above all else - no pinching through their midsections, no uneven forms, etc. We can always come back and wrap further masses around them after the fact, as demonstrated along the bottom half of this quick demo I did for another student.

This will continue to be very important, as we continue to utilize this technique in the animals lesson.

Anyway, your construction is largely still looking quite good, and I'm noticing that your use of texture and approach to detail is developing nicely. This is actually a topic I rewrote for lesson 2 along with this whole website update. You'll find the new material here, and I recommend you give it a quick once over. I think the section on form shading (and specifically how we implement it within the context of these lessons) will help a fair bit.

You're doing a good job. I'll go ahead and mark this lesson as complete, so feel free to move onto lesson 5.

Next Steps:

Move onto Lesson 5.

This critique marks this lesson as complete.
11:48 PM, Sunday February 2nd 2020

Oh wow first on the new platform, that's a huge honor! Thank you very much for the feedback, I'll go through the updated lesson 2; shading is certainly something that I'd like to work on.

Again much appreciated for all your hard work, it's been a long time since I've felt so good about creating art.

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