Lesson 3: Applying Construction to Plants

7:43 AM, Saturday December 18th 2021

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I had a lot of trouble with the plant construction (And texture, but I tried anyway) But hopefully it'll come across well enough. I've also been having some issues with the way my fineliner pressure? I can't seem to do any 'small' / 'light' looking lines. Not sure what I might be doing wrong there, as even the most minimal amount of pressure seems to still make the same bold lines.

Also still struggling to force myself to drawn from the shoulder.

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6:21 PM, Sunday December 19th 2021

Hi I'll be handling the critique for your lesson 3 homework.

-Starting with your arrows, they are looking good, but some segments of your lines are looking wobbly, make sure you are ghosting as much as needed, because this wobbliness undermines the solidity and flow of your arrows. You have kept the foreshortening and the negative space between the zigzaging sections of the ribbon in mind so good job there.

  • As a minor observation, I don't see that you are using lineweight on the overlapping parts, it is an important thing to remember.

-Moving on to the leaves exercise, I think you have done well, you integrate the little bumpos and cuts seamlessly into the structure, but I don't see you tried to make any complex leaf structure like the maple leaves, this is not amjor mistake, but I'd suggest you try it in the future.

-Continuing on to the branches exercise I have some observations.

  • Make sure each segment extends fully halfway to the next ellipse. Most of yours do, but there are some that fall a bit short.

  • Try to use that last 'tail' of the previous segment as a runway, overlapping it directly before shooting off towards the next target. As demonstrated here, this along with the previous point's extension to that midpoint helps to achieve a smoother, more seamless transition from segment to segment.

  • Make sure that you're cognizant of how the degree of each ellipse reflects its orientation in space relative to the viewer. This is something we discussed back in the Lesson 1 ellipses video, so you can check that out if you're unsure what I mean.

-Now regarding your question about your fineliner, that's the point of using them in this course, they make bold marks even with the slightest pressure, this forces you to be more careful and mindful about the marks you want to make.

-I think that you are struggling to draw from your shoulder because of the spacing in your drawings, it appears that you are thinking ahead to how many drawings you'd like to fit on a given page. It certainly is admirable, as you clearly want to get more practice in, but in artificially limiting how much space you give a given drawing, you're limiting your brain's capacity for spatial reasoning, while also making it harder to engage your whole arm while drawing. The best approach to use here is to ensure that the first drawing on a given page is given as much room as it requires. Only when that drawing is done should we assess whether there is enough room for another. If there is, we should certainly add it, and reassess once again. If there isn't, it's perfectly okay to have just one drawing on a given page as long as it is making full use of the space available to it.

Now I want to address a number of problems that show up in your drawings.

-First of all make sure that when drawing pots you draw a minor axis wich will help you to align the ellipses.

-Draw each form in its entirety. There will be circumstances where, say, a flower has so many petals that they overlap one another. Instead of allowing the petals to cut each other off, draw each and every one in its entirety. These are all just exercises in spatial reasoning, and drawing each form in its entirety will help you better understand how those forms relate to one another in 3D space.

-Draw one thing at a time, and focus on every single mark. Use the ghosting method to ensure that you're considering what each mark's purpose is, and how you're going to achieve it best. If you have a plant with many leaves, each individual leaf's flow line is no less important for being part of a larger group. There are no deadlines or expectations on how long this stuff should take - you don't have to complete a single drawing, or a single page, in one sitting, or even one day. You can take as long, as many days as you need to complete just one drawing. What matters is that you execute the work to the best of your current ability.

Next Steps:

I'd like to more in depth regarding texture, but firts you gotta improv ethe first steps of your constructions, so I'll ask you to draw 3 more plant constructions, keep in mind this:

Draw one thing at a time, and focus on every single mark. Use the ghosting method to ensure that you're considering what each mark's purpose is, and how you're going to achieve it best. If you have a plant with many leaves, each individual leaf's flow line is no less important for being part of a larger group. There are no deadlines or expectations on how long this stuff should take - you don't have to complete a single drawing, or a single page, in one sitting, or even one day. You can take as long, as many days as you need to complete just one drawing. What matters is that you execute the work to the best of your current ability.

When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
11:38 AM, Thursday December 23rd 2021

I tried to do as you said for these three plant drawings, but I'm still fairly lacking in confidence. I appreciate your detailed response, by the way!

https://imgur.com/a/2EApuUL

5:35 PM, Thursday December 23rd 2021

Hi, yes I know that it is hard to draw confidently specially when you are doing the work for your submission, but as you move on to later lessons and challenges it is important that you strive to improve.

-So starting with the tulip I think you have done great drawing the leaves here, and their folds, and they way you constructed the petals too. You still have some trouble connecting the branches, but overall it is good. The weakest part here is the pot, but it is not as important as the plant itself.

-Moving on to the mushroom, I think you have done well too, maybe the fact that you drew it in a smaller space affected your linework, but I have one thing to call out, as you move trough later lessons you will not want to rely on contour lines too much, it is better to focus on the intersections and the way the forms connect to one another.

-And finishing with the corpse flower I think your construction is quite solid, and the only thing holding you back here is your confidence, when drawing the additional bumps and cuts to the edges of the petals, so keep working on that.

Next Steps:

I'll let you move on to the next lessons, keep practicing previous exercises and doing your warm ups.

And btw, Happy Holidays! And best wishes for the coming year.

This community member feels the lesson should be marked as complete, and 3 others agree. The student has earned their completion badge for this lesson and should feel confident in moving onto the next lesson.
7:32 AM, Friday December 24th 2021

I appreciate you greatly. Thank you so much for your patience and I wish you all the best with these holidays and the next year, too. Hopefully things won't be as harsh as they have been so far with everything going on in the world. ?

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