250 Box Challenge

7:21 PM, Tuesday June 7th 2022

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Hi there! In the last lesson I had some wobbling lines that I needed to improve, for this task I focused on working hard the lines flow and accuracy, I also tried a way variety of angles, even very weird ones that end up being similar to a flower pot, I maybe am mistaken but I like the wide angles as a photographer so I tried to bring those to this exercise. If I'm wrong I will just do the whole challenge again haha.

Well, thank you so much in advance for the time and love you all put on this.

P.S: I uploaded all the images not flipped, but imgur keeps flipping aleatory ones :/ Sorry for the extra work.

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10:22 PM, Tuesday June 7th 2022

Hi there, I'll be handling your box challenge critique.

Not only does the challenge help deepen your understanding of important concepts but it shows your desire to learn as well. That being said I'll try to keep this critique fairly brief so you can get working on the next steps as soon as possible.

In order to keep this critique brief it may also get a bit blunt at times so I apologize in advance, it's not a critique of you just the work that's been provided.

I do get the impression that you rushed through this challenge and there are a few reasons that lead me to believe this. You should be waiting until you get critique on your submission before starting the next step of the course, as an example you shouldn't start the box challenge until you get your lesson 1 critique or start lesson 2 until you get your box challenge critique. While I can't be certain that you started this before your lesson 1 submission your boxes are very wobbly at the beginning of the challenge and looking at your profile I can see that you're asking questions about lesson 2 which you shouldn't be looking at until this critique has been read and given you the "ok" to move on to it.

You were told to move on to the box challenge on the 26th which means that you completed the challenge in 12 days, while 20 boxes a day is doable it's more than we typically expect or recommend. Each box typically takes around 5 to 10 minutes to complete if people take their time, with some more time spent looking over each page to determine how to adjust their approach on the next page. If each box takes 10 minutes it's about 41 hours for the whole challenge, it's not surprising if the challenge takes around a month total. Of course if your time isn't limited it's possible to do it faster but people often hit a point of dimishing returns when trying to learn things so it's better to do something for 30 minutes a day rather than doing the same amount of work in 3.5 hours in one day

Your lines do improve over the course of the challenge but there is still the occasional wobble or line that's broken into multiple sketchy lines rather than a single confident one. Remember that accuracy comes with mileage, smooth confident lines using the ghosting method are the top priority.

This brings us to the main issue I've noticed, you may have been so focused on your linework that you neglected some of the principles of the challenge itself. Your lines are often diverging or don't converge in a consistent manner which shows that you may not have clear vanishing points in mind. As you can see here our lines are part of a set and should converge towards a vanishing point, the further the vanishing the point the closer to parallel the lines will become but they should never be diverging. Each box is composed of 3 sets of lines and each set will have it's own vanishing point that they converge towards.

There doesn't appear to be any attempts at hatching or line weight which while optional are very useful tools and I encourage you to practice them going forward. The lack of them also leads to the feeling that you may not have given yourself enough time to complete this challenge.

The key things we want to remember from this exercise are that our lines should always converge as a set not in pairs, never diverge from the vanishing point and due to perspective they won't be completely parallel.

I won't be moving you on to the next lesson just yet, each lesson builds off concepts in the previous course material so if you move forward with un-addressed issues you end up just creating further issues on top of them.

I'd like you to read through the instructions again and draw 50 more boxes please. Take your time, give them your best attempt. Try implementing hatching and line weight, utilize the ghosting technique to plan your lines before drawing them and imagine how each set converges towards your vanishing points. Be sure to experiment with proportions and rates of foreshortening by placing your vanishing points at different distances as well.

While not directly related to the challenge itself if you could take pictures of your pages closer up so that there's less non-relevant information, and we can have an easier time seeing smaller details it would also be appreciated going forward. Your pictures are high res which is great, but ideally we don't need to open each photo to look for things and can instead scroll through the imgur/website page and get all the info we need.

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

I know you can do this and look forward to seeing your work.

Next Steps:

50 more boxes please.

When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
8:39 AM, Wednesday June 8th 2022
edited at 8:40 AM, Jun 8th 2022

Hi Tofu! I did write you back and for some reason I don't see my answer. So here we go again haha.

You are totally right in your review, I'm guilty of rushing the challenge, I started it while I was waiting for the Lesson 1 Review and I completed it in 5 sitings; all the mistakes you pointed are totally true, maybe if I have done it in more time I could have spotted it, but well, I have a lot of free time right now since I'm unemployed and the inner me tells me to rush things and actually the answer is that I should slow down to actually get better faster!

I'll work hard on that 50 boxes and spend as you say 5 to 10 minutes on each box and imagining the VP's and mentally trace thinking of the 3 ones I must aim to complete the task.

Thank you so much for such a in deep review and for being so honest pointing me the mistakes you spoted.

edited at 8:40 AM, Jun 8th 2022
5:46 PM, Wednesday June 8th 2022

You'd initially sent your message in as a report, rather than a reply. So we did see the message, but that's why it didn't show up here.

6:27 PM, Wednesday June 8th 2022

Oh sorry, missclicked, never intended to send it as a report. Tofu did an amazing job, sorry to bother you guys.

7:56 PM, Saturday June 11th 2022
edited at 7:57 PM, Jun 11th 2022

Hi again! I actually spend more time on this 50 boxes than probably on the 250, I made sure to analyze each box to figure out the mistakes, I still make a lot of them, but I think that my eye understood better the 3D space where the box is supposed to be, looking at the first pages and at the last ones where I focused on doing larger boxes to make harder to eyeball the VP's overall I feel more comfortable.

I would like to share what I think that are my bigger mistakes and compare with your view

  • Wobbling lines: This time I slowed down and my lines got worse and even worser on the second pass to dark the sides

  • Back Side of the box could be better: The first boxes I draw the back side was worst than on the latest, but I'm still making mistakes by the end of the task on this regard

  • VP's interpretation: There are some boxes where I had mistakes on the correction pass since I wasn't sure where the VP should be. When I started to worry 90% on the VP's and trying to make different boxes I drawn some where the VP wasn't too accurate, this mistake got better in my opinion page to page

  • Front Side interpretation: Even though I understand the concept of the plain position and the viewer point it's harder to make it obvious on the paper compared to the mind, so it worked against me during the entire task.

Sorry for rushing the 250 box challenge, I worked several years to open the possibility to learn how to be an animator. I'll start the art school at October and I'm scared since I'll face youngers students with more skills than I and I'm kind of scared haha.

Well sorry for the off-topic and thank you so much for taking the time of reading this and checking my work.

Forgot to say! If you feel that I need to redo the entire challenge just ask for it, I'm totally sure that you know what is the best for each of us and I totally trust your eye over mine


edited at 7:57 PM, Jun 11th 2022
2:26 AM, Sunday June 12th 2022

Hello again.

There are a few noteworthy things about these revisions so let's get started:

  • I'm glad to see that you tried to apply line weight and hatching.

  • While there's still the occasional bit of wobbling your boxes appear more confident overall which is good.

I'd like to comment on a few of the things you brought up as well:

  • You mention that you tried slowing down and your wobbling got worse, that's correct. When you slow down while drawing lines it allows your brain to try and course correct, as instructed you should be taking your time to ghost your line, plan where it will be start and end up and then draw it confidently in one smooth confident motion. To recap, slowing down doesn't mean draw the line slower, it means take more time doing everything around drawing the line itself.

  • The back side of the box is drawn last so it reflects any mistakes you've made up till that point, while you should try your best it will rarely be perfect. That being said there are some things you can do to get better results which I'll be going over after addressing the rest of your points.

  • Vanishing points are noticably something you're still struggling with, it still feels like you're not taking enough time to actually plan where they are before you begin making marks on the page.

  • The front side planes should always be larger than the rear side planes, the initial Y you draw in the beginning dictates where your vanishing points are and roughly creates these 3 planes, since your lines should converge towards your vanishing points the rear facing planes will be further away and smaller due to perspective.

Some important issues worth noting as well:

  • At times you're placing your vanishing point between the viewer and your boxes (boxes: 8, 13, 16, 25, 26, 27, 36, and 47) . This leads to you extending your lines in the wrong direction and your boxes becoming distorted because your lines are actually diverging from where the vanishing point would actually be. Here's a guide I wrote that will hopefully help you place your vanishing points and line extensions more consistently. You can find some more examples of incorrectly extended boxes here as well as a simplified guide below them as well.

  • You're not experimenting with rates of foreshortening, instead you try to draw your lines as parallel as you can and push your vanishing points far from your boxes or it doesn't feel like you have clear ones in mind. Try bringing your vanishing points in closer so that you get experience working with lines when they have to converge more dramatically.

While there are improvements here there are still some notable issues with your understanding of vanishing points occurring. Besides placing them between the viewer and the box at times your convergences don't feel consistent which makes it feel like you don't have them in mind while drawing your sets of lines.

This also ties into how fast this revision came in, I noted in your original submission that you tackled the challenge way too quickly and that it's normal for it to take a month. You mentioned that you spent more time on these 50 boxes than on the challenge which is great, but it doesn't change the fact that these revisions came in just 3 days later than they were assigned, I can't stress the fact enough that you need to take your time.

I'm happy to hear that you're trying to chase your dream of being an animator, and I do understand that it can be a bit anxiety inducing if you feel like people are younger than you and can get better results but I would like you to try your best to realize that it really doesn't matter all that much. At the end of the day it's all about the quality of practice you put into the time you're using, if someone is in high school and they doodle for 4 hours a day you're going to pass them in ability quickly if you put in good quality practice. The people who are younger than you that get better results may be younger in age but they're your senior in terms of hours of work they've put in, that's nothing to be ashamed of, those are people you can learn from.

You mention multiple times that you're happy to redo the box challenge if it's asked of you, and that's noble but not required. While we do assign total redos at times, they're not common for the box challenge and I don't think it would be beneficial here. If I asked you to do the entire thing again and it was just rushed it wouldn't be any different and would just risk burn out. Instead I really want you to spend your time, and put in your best effort.

I want you to draw 20 more boxes but there's going to be a condition along with it, do your best to think of where your vanishing points are and how your lines should extend towards them. Bring them in closer to get experience working with more dramatic rates of foreshortening. Avoid placing your vanishing point between the viewer and the box.

The condition for these revisions is that you can't hand them until 5 days from the time this comment is posted. How you choose to use those days is up to you, if you chose to do all 20 boxes right away and then wait 4 days and hand them in it'll be noticeable and you'll be assigned more. The way I would go about doing it is read through all of the instructions again, read through your critiques, look at your submissions and identify the mistakes that have been pointed out to you, once you've done that draw 4 boxes, reflect on them and call it a day. The next day look over the boxes you've drawn again, then draw 4 more.

While it's great that you're excited and you want to learn you'll find that rushing ends up taking longer than if you just took your time to begin with. If you have a week to complete a project that will take 3.5 hours, you'll likely get better results spending 30 minutes a day on it than if you tackled it all at once.

You may also find ScyllaStew's videos helpful. She recorded herself working through some of the lesson material, it can often be helpful if people don't understand just how long it can take at times.

This definitely was lengthier than I originally intended but hopefully it provided some clarity, if you have any questions before getting started feel free to ask them of course.

If you have none then I look forward to seeing your work 5 days from now at the earliest.

Next Steps:

20 more boxes submitted 5 days from now at the earliest.

When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
8:01 AM, Friday June 17th 2022

Hi Tofu!

Here is my job: https://imgur.com/a/tWBWtVM

Let me explain something; first, I really appreciate the time you spent on your reviews and on the very good in deep guide you shared.

Actually I learned more about drawing than drawing boxes, I started over with the lectures on lesson 0 and 1. I must admit that I wasn't fulfilling the 50% rule, first I thought that it was a rule to avoid some people to burnout, but it's actually a rule that not only makes you better at drawing, it also teaches you how to have fun and thats why I worked so hard to start on art school, I liked drawing so much than I want to work on this, but I wasn't having fun.

More about on the exercise:

  • I actually learned why this can take 1 month or even longer

  • I think I improved in any aspect, but still far from perfect

  • There is notations that I did for me and for you about the mistakes I spotted during my correction and study

  • I started a sketchbook and now I'm still drawing plenty of hours a day, but not rushing Drawabox but having fun drawing whatever I want to

  • There are still boxes that end up being too well made with too far VP's, I struggle with this because closer VP's have dramatic results and there I start to make lines wobblier, and this is probably the most important point that I must to achieve, since it can leads to non convergence and sometimes divergence.

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