Drawing Foundations: how to draw for beginners | Siobhan Twomey | Skillshare

Drawing Foundations: how to draw for beginners

Siobhan Twomey, Artist, Illustrator, Instructor

Drawing Foundations: how to draw for beginners

Siobhan Twomey, Artist, Illustrator, Instructor

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20 Lessons (2h 21m)
    • 1. Promo

    • 2. Introduction

    • 3. What Material You Need

    • 4. Drawing and Photography

    • 5. Drawing and Seeing

    • 6. Foundation1: Seeing Shapes

    • 7. Exercise 1: Contour Drawing

    • 8. Exercise 2: Upside Down Drawing

    • 9. Exercise 3: Still Life with Contours

    • 10. Exercise 4: Blind Drawing

    • 11. Foundation 2: Seeing Relationships

    • 12. Exercise 5: Negative Space

    • 13. Perspective

    • 14. Exercise 6: Sighting

    • 15. Exercise 7: Sighting an Interior

    • 16. Foundation 3: Seeing Form

    • 17. Drawing Light and Shadow

    • 18. Exercise 9: Gesture Drawing

    • 19. Exercise 10: Drawing People with Gesture

    • 20. Conclusion

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About This Class

Welcome to my Skillshare class on the 3 Foundations of Drawing. This class will help you create a solid foundation for a lifetime of drawing. I teach you exactly what drawing is and how to understand it; plus I explain why people sometimes think they can't draw, and what to do in order to dispel that belief.

This class is built around 10 drawing exercises that are specifically aimed at blasting through the idea that you can't draw. If that sounds interesting to you, check it out ! :)

The exercises are divided into 3 sections.

1. The first section is all about seeing shapes - I will teach you through a set of exercises how to tune into what’s called a drawing mode, and see things in terms of their shape instead of the way you would normally see them.

2. Then the second section is about seeing relationships of size between shapes. You’ll learn about rules of perspective and about how to use the method of sighting in your drawing.

3. Finally, the last section teaches you about form. For me, form means the whole thing, and the exercises in this section are aimed and giving you an understandingof how to bring your drawing from being flat 2 d rendering to a fully finished drawing of substance.

What you will learn in this class:

  • You will learn how to draw anything from observation, no matter how complex

  • You'll learn how to draw perspective and angles

  • You'll learn how to draw a simple object, as well as a complex still life

  • You'll learn about lighting and shading and how to give your drawing structure through shading

We will work step-by-step together through the 10 exercises so that you have a complete understanding of the process. In each of the exercises, I explain the concept for each one, then I demo a drawing and explain the method and approach; and then it's over to you to have a go at your own drawing for that particular exercise.

By the end of the class, not only will you be able to draw naturally and confidently, but you will have a deep understanding of what exactly drawing is, and what makes a good drawing. And, you will have a method and a process for putting your own creative talent out into the world through your drawings.

And that’ probably the most exciting outcome for this class.

I really hope you join me in this class! I've been so inspired by the work everyone has submitted in all my other Skillshare classes, and have made this one specifically to support and help you in your creative, artistic journey. Drawing is fundamental; and learning the foundations can blow away any doubt you might have about being able to draw beautifully.

See you in the class!


Meet Your Teacher

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Siobhan Twomey

Artist, Illustrator, Instructor

Top Teacher

Hello, I'm Siobhan

My background spans the disciplines of drawing, painting, filmmaking and animation. I studied Film in Dublin, and at the Tisch School of the Arts, at NYU in New York. I later studied drawing and animation. Since 2002, I have worked in studios in Vancouver and Dublin as a professional background artist and environment designer. I've also worked as a storyboard artist, concept artist, and I have directed a number of short animated films.

All in all, I've worked for over 15 years as an Artist, Illustrator and Animation Professional. I've provided artwork for studios whose clients include Disney UK, Sony Pictures Animation, HMH Publishing, to name a few.

I also have an ongoing painting and drawing practice, and I paint portraits on commission, and exh... See full profile

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1. Promo: Hey there, I'm Siobhan and this is drawing foundations. A course that teaches you the core exercises and techniques for a complete drawing skill sesh. This course is not about teaching you how to draw specific things like a cylinder, how to draw a nose or how to draw lovely eyes. This course teaches you three things; how to see shapes, how to see the relationships between shapes, and how to see the form. Learning the correct way to see these three things is the doorway to being able to draw anything that you want. I'm a figure drawing instructor, artist, and animation professional with close to 20 years experience making drawings as a professional and in my person drawing practice. This course distilled everything that I know about laying a solid foundation for drawing. If you can draw, then no matter where you are, you can be an artist. All you need is something to draw with and something to draw on. That's really all you need. You don't need anything else. But even if you're not necessarily interested in being an artist, learning to draw is a deeply creative endeavor that helps you to see the world differently and naturally feeds into all aspects of your other work. Drawing is my passion. It's something I think about every day. I also think how best to teach it to other people, especially online. I believe that learning how to draw in a way that's natural to you and that will prove consistent no matter what it is you sit down to draw, has the power to completely change things in your life for a very simple and often overlooked reason. Learning how to draw allows you to express yourself in a really vital and important way. For example, personally, if I don't have drawing, I feel very disconnected to the world around me. Drawing is the one thing that makes me feel like I'm part of the world. So that's just my experience. It could be different for you, but for sure, learning to draw will allow you to find your voice. That in itself can open doors for you that you never thought possible. So yes, I think drawing is hugely important and I think learning how to draw is the start of a really exciting journey. Thanks for checking out this course. If you do enroll, I really look forward to working with you. 2. Introduction: In this video, I'm going to explain how the course is set up and give you some pointers on how you can get the very best out of it. The first few videos after this one covers some parameters for how we'll be working together throughout the course. These videos include some really important information that I want to teach you about how to think about drawing. Don't skip these preliminary videos. They really set the groundwork for the whole rest of the course. In them, I explain why you possibly think that you can't draw and also what makes a good drawing. I also talk about what the key is to being able to draw anything. Then you move into the main exercises for the course. These are divided into three sections. The first section is all about seeing shapes. I teach you through a set of specific exercises, how to tune into what's called a drawing mode, and to see things in terms of their shape instead of the way you might normally see them. Then the second section is all about seeing the relationships of size between shapes. In these lessons, you'll learn about the rules of perspective, and about how to use the method that artists use called citing in order to make a drawing. Finally, the last section teaches you about form. For me, form means really the whole thing. The exercises in this section are aimed at giving you an understanding about how to bring your drawing to the next level. In other words, from being just a flat 2D rendering to a fully finished drawing that has substance. Each video in these three sections involves a drawing exercise. First, I explain the idea and the concept behind the exercise, and then I demo the drawing myself. The videos for the most part are not speeded up. You really get to see how I approach the drawing from start to finish, and I also point out useful information about the method that I'm using as I go along. Definitely watch those demos all the way through. After each exercise it's then over to you to try it out. I would encourage you to pause the video and work in your sketchbook for about 15 to 20 minutes for each one. Then I'd love to see your drawings and if you want, I can even give you feedback. All you need to do then is just take a photo of your drawing or scan it in and send it to me. Remember, I'm here for you throughout the course and I want to help you and support you as much as I can so don't hesitate to contact me. I usually get around to responding to all of my students within 48 working hours. I'm here to monitor your progress, to answer any questions that you have. Well, that's really the way the course is set up, that's how it's going to work. By the end of the course, not only will you be able to draw naturally and confidently, but you'll have a much deeper understanding and appreciation of what drawing is and what makes a good drawing. You will also have a method and a process for putting your own creative talent out into the world through your drawings. That's probably the most exciting outcome for this course. I can't wait to see your work. I'm really excited that you've enrolled. Let's get started. 3. What Material You Need: Your material list for this course is very uncomplicated. Really, you just need something to draw with and something to draw on. That could be any pen or pencil that you have and a piece of paper. But I would encourage you to buy yourself a couple of pencils and a sketchbook. In this video, I thought I'd show you the supplies that I picked up, and I'll walk you through some of the options, because I know that when it comes to art supplies, the choices can be overwhelming. When you first go into an art store, there is just so much to choose from. This is my local art shop and it's tiny, and yet just looking at all the different sketchbooks alone is mind boggling. Keep in mind that some of these sketchbooks are for watercolors, so avoid anything that has really heavy-texture paper. What you want is something where the paper has a bit of a smooth feel. It's often referred to as cartridge paper. But you could also pick up something that has a beige texture. Just make sure it's not too heavy. Out of all of these choices of sketchbook, I picked up a very cheap one that's got nice paper. It's ring-bound, which means that it will lay flat when it's open, so that's good. But you don't need to go all out here and get an expensive sketchbook, that's all I'm saying. Then for drawing tools, again, the range is endless. I really just honed in on plain old pencils. Pencils are made from what's known as graphite, and the way they're classified depends on either their hardness or their blackness. This number at the base of the pencil refers to that. If it says something like 2H or something, then that means it's in the hardness range and it will be quite light in color. If it says B or something like 2B, then it's in the blackness range and it'll be soft or dark in color. I picked up a B, a 2B, and a 6B. That's it, that's really all you need. If you do want to get an eraser, you can do so. I didn't buy one. I have something in the studio that's called a kneaded eraser, which is very pliable and I'll use that if I have to. The other thing on your list is a piece of card. What you'll do with this is make a viewfinder because you'll be using the viewfinder later on in some of the exercises that we'll do. A viewfinder is often used to try and frame up your composition or to choose the composition that you want. It's also very useful to look at your subject matter through a viewfinder because it can help you to determine edges and shapes. This viewfinder or the piece of card I want you to get, it doesn't really matter what size it is, but just nothing too big, keep it on the small side. It doesn't even have to match the size of your paper, it can be smaller than that. That's really it, that's the extent of your materials list. Really you should be able to get through all of the drawing exercises with just one or two pencils and your sketchbook. If you did want to experiment with different media, please, by all means, you're completely free to do so, and I'd love to see your work if you do draw with something else other than pencils. Also if you've got any questions whatsoever, if you are unsure about what to get for the exercises in this course, then just send me a message and I'll help you out. I'm happy to make some suggestions. 4. Drawing and Photography: In this video, I want to talk to you about drawing and photography. Now you might think, what has photography got to do with this? This is a drawing course. Well, the fact is that everything in this course is going to be mediated through the lens and that means that even though I'll be looking at a still life, you'll only be seeing the flat 2D image of that. There's nothing we can do about it. That's how we're working in this course and I'm happy to work around those parameters if it means that I can share some valuable and useful information to you. But I want to stress as much as I can from the very outset and this is really important for you to know about this course. When it comes time for you to do the drawing exercises, make sure that you choose something that you can draw from life. I want you to pause the videos or turn off your laptop or device and look at something in your room, pick it up, really observe the details of it. This is called drawing from life and it means that you're looking at something in a very different way than how you would look at a photograph. You just can't get the same quality of experience drawing from a photo. If you've never drawn from life before, you'll see exactly what I mean when you do so. Things are much more difficult and complicated when you're drawing from life. But remember that the exercises in this course are specifically geared towards making drawing from life easy. That's the first thing that I wanted to say, make sure that you don't draw from a photo and the second point that I wanted to talk about with regard to drawing and photography and this is really important for beginner artists to understand, is that making a photo-realistic drawing isn't necessarily the goal. Making a drawing that looks hyper-realistic or looks just like a photo, doesn't necessarily mean that it's a good drawing. There seems to be a huge gap in people's awareness or understanding about this point. So many beginners think that they have to have photo realistic accuracy in their drawing in order to be able to say that they've done a good drawing. When they're drawing doesn't look like a photo, they get discouraged. Or when it does look like a photo, they'll focus only in on that and then spend all their time drawing from photos or trying to make images that look like photos. I will teach you techniques that will ensure you can achieve accuracy in your work if you apply them. But my main focus, my main goal and aim for this course is to make sure that you actually know how to observe correctly. I'm not going to be looking at your drawings to see if they look as nice as a photo. I'll be looking at your drawings to see if you've observed your subject and observation comes through in a drawing in many different ways, not just in realism or realistic looking rendering. For example, at the end of the course, I teach you a technique called gesture drawing and gesture drawing is really just drawing with a bunch of scribbles. You can't get further away from realism than that and yet it has the power to capture the essence or the quality of something in a way that a camera can't. I hope all of this will start to make a little bit more sense once you get into contour drawing and blind contour drawing. But I wanted to talk about it at the outset because it's something I feel very strongly about. I feel that it's something that's often neglected in the world of YouTube videos and online tutorials and so, if you learn nothing else from this course, at least learn that a good drawing or a beautiful drawing really is one that's beautifully observed. In order to learn how to observe, we're going to have to understand a little bit of how we look at things. In the next video, I'm going to explain exactly that. 5. Drawing and Seeing: If you think that you can't draw, it's probably because you tried to draw something and you were a bit disappointed because you felt it didn't look like the object you were trying to draw. So this has to do a lot with how we think that a drawing needs to look like a photo, but also it has a lot to do with how you look at things. Drawing is all about seeing, it's not really about pencil control or accuracy. It's about how you look at something. Throughout this course, I'm going to teach you powerful techniques to help you practice looking at things differently to how you normally would. This is going to have a dramatic effect on your drawing and in this video I'm going to explain why that is. It has to do with the functions of the brain and how our cognitive processes apply themselves to different tasks. Normally, when we look at something, let's say a face, we start to analyze it in terms of what we can see like the eyes or the nose. This is very normal. This is what we do all the time, we'll identify that's the eye, that's a nose, that's the mouth or for example, if we see a tree, we'll identify that's a tree trunk and that's a big leafy canopy. Analyzing and naming things are functions of the left side of the brain. Now when you analyze something and name it, the left side of the brain immediately assigns a symbol to that. In this way, when you start drawing, an eye that you see on your friend's face, usually gets drawn like this and this is because this symbol is what you know corresponds to an eye or when you draw a tree, you make a drawing like this and that's simply how the left side of the brain handles the drawing task. It'll give you a symbol to draw based on past experience and to be efficient, let's say. The problem is that symbols are really empty, incorrect placeholders for the thing that they actually represent and that's why you would say your drawing looks bad. The left side of the brain is the verbal analytical side and it doesn't handle drawing tasks very well. However, the right side of the brain is the responsive, intuitive, creative side, and it handles the task of drawing very well. What you need to be able to do is allow the right side of the brain to take over the drawing task and let the left side of the brain just opt out. To do this you have to look at things in a certain way so that the left side of the brain will want to opt out. You have to look with an intuitive responsive process rather than with a verbal, analytical or logical process. When you do this, then you start to see things in terms of shape and that's your breakthrough moment. That's when you can start to draw shapes instead of symbols. Suddenly you'll notice that an eye is made up of all of these different shaped areas and if you just draw each shape one by one instead of an eye, your drawing will actually be a good drawing. You just need to learn how to see things differently in order to learn how to draw and this is when you start to realize that drawing is not a special talent that only talented people have, drawing is a skill that you can learn through specific exercises and techniques and most of these have to do with training yourself to see things differently. Start to think about observation as something that's more than just looking. Think of it as an activity of your sight that actually brings in all of your other senses, especially the sense of touch. Understanding shape, for example, has a lot to do with how something feels. We're going to incorporate that idea of using all of our senses in the way we observe as we work through the exercises in this course. 6. Foundation1: Seeing Shapes: In this section of videos, I'm going to show you how to start to see things in terms of shape rather than in terms of the labels. This is also the start of learning how to get really interested in looking at something. You're going to start to get deeply interested in things and start to look at things in a way that you haven't necessarily done before. The following exercises are probably the most immediate and the most direct way that you can access that drawing mode that I was talking about, where you are purely looking rather than analyzing. The thing I want to point out before we start is that I want you to focus on what it feels like when you're drawing in this mode. Rather than focusing on the drawing itself or on the finished product of your drawing, become aware, if you can, of your mindset or how it feels like when you're purely focused and you're drawing without thinking about the result. This is really important for the section because some of the drawings that we'll be doing, especially when we get to blind drawing, will not look great. I'm just warning you at the outset that if you are too concerned about making a very nice drawing, you might miss out on the opportunity of making a beautifully observed drawing. As far as I'm concerned, I would much rather see a bunch of messy lines and scribbles that tells me that this is a very well-observed drawing rather than something that looks like a fairly nice but just simply okay drawing. When we do get to that blind drawing exercise, I expected a lot of resistance to show up and I just want you to be aware that that resistance is actually part of the process. Also, coming to an understanding of what makes a good drawing and what makes not so good a drawing is equally part of this process. With all of that as a prerequisite for the next couple of exercises, we'll get started. I'm going to show you how to do a contour drawing first, then we'll do an exercise that will actually probably surprise you in its accuracy and ease, and then we'll follow that with a blind drawing and some more contour drawings. 7. Exercise 1: Contour Drawing: For this exercise, we're going to draw a few basic shapes. I want to teach you how to do a proper contour drawing. You can really choose any object that you like for this exercise, or any selection of objects. Just nothing too complex or complicated. Something simple like a mug, or a bottle, or a jar, or something like that. If you're struggling with choosing things to draw, just send me a message and I'll give you some suggestions. The aim of this exercise is just to draw contours. Let me explain exactly what contours are. Contours are the edges of things or objects, but they're not the outlines. That's an important distinction that I want you to make and understand. If you were to draw the outline, you'd end up with just a silhouette. That's not great because it's simply renders the object as something that's flat, and it doesn't give any indication as to its form. Whereas a contour, if you think about the edge of something, you know that that edge comes forward in space and it curves around, that's what makes your drawing look three-dimensional. The edges or the contours in your drawing also speak to what you know about the object. Our understanding of the object comes into play in the drawing. You know exactly what it feels like to hold this orange in your hand. It feels round. That knowledge, that understanding needs to come into your drawing in some way, so a contour line will help you to describe that edge. The second important thing that distinguishes a contour line from just being an outline is that you can describe overlapping edges. If you had two oranges, for example, side-by-side like this, this treatment would render them, again, very, very flat. But if you draw the contours in of the edges where they overlap, it gives a much better sense of dimension. For this exercise, pick something simple to work with. I'm going to draw this mug. The first thing that you do is really study the object. Once you've looked at it, you can place your pencil onto the page along the edge of the thing that you're going to draw. Then as your eyes move slowly along the edge of that object, then allow your pencil to follow. Don't let your pencil run ahead of what you're looking at. Try to keep your observation and your pencil really in tandem. Stick to the perceived outer edges for now. Don't really bother with any of the patterns that you see within the object. What I'm doing is really just allowing my eye to follow the lines around the edge. I'm not really trying to make a drawing. I'm letting my pencil follow my eyes and see where that takes me. At the moment, I'm going along the outer edge, but there is also an inner contour that I need to draw, and that's for the handle, and also for the edge where the handle touches to the cup. Those are also a couple of interior contour lines. Then very importantly, in order to make this not a silhouette, I'm going to draw the top of the mug where I see this inner contour going along like this. That's really it, nothing too fancy. It's a very slow, concentrated approach. Here's another example of a contour drawing. This time I speeded up the video so that it's not too long for you to watch the whole thing. But I did want you to get the idea by seeing another example. I'll just add this one in. But I'll mention, when you are making your own drawing, be sure to go really, really slowly, as slow as possible. Don't be mistaken by this video into thinking that you can draw the contour lines very fast. It's actually a very slow drawing process. This drawing of a desk lamp that I'm doing, it actually has a lot more examples of the interior contour lines that I was talking about. Edges within your shapes, as you can see. Especially when I get down to the base of the lamp, there is a lot of interior contour lines there. Now, this whole practice is really, as I say, it's not about making a perfect image, it's about using line in order to investigate your subject. You almost trying to fill out the whole thing with your line. If you do make a mistake, then don't bother to erase it out. Really, I'd encourage you keep going and let your lines work around that area and find the proper contour edge that you want to find. It'll be okay. I mean, that's what I did there at the base of the lamp. I didn't bother to erase it out or anything. I just kept working around it. Now, I want you to pause the videos and give yourself about 15 or 20 minutes, and draw a few objects focusing only on the contours. Don't draw the shadows, or the textures of the objects, or any patterns that you see within the object, just simply focus on the edges for now. When you're ready, you can meet me in the next video for the upside down drawing. 8. Exercise 2: Upside Down Drawing: This next exercise we're actually going to draw from a photograph instead of drawing from life. Because I want to demonstrate to you how powerful it can be if you are able to show off your verbal or analytical response to visual information. In other words if you can find a way to stop your left brain from analyzing and naming visual information, you can actually draw things much better. This is a very famous drawing exercise that I like. Many people first came across in a book called Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards. This exercise will show you that if you don't know what it is that you're looking at, you'll see that thing is simply made up of a bunch of shapes. That's actually very easy to draw. Am not going to say too much about this exercise because I want you to experience it first and then we'll analyze it later. You'll see that I've left a few images for you to choose from in the download section. You can choose any one you like, but I'm going to work with this photo of a horse. What you'll do for this exercise is turn the image upside down, just like I'm doing here. Then, start to draw what you see. It doesn't matter at all where you start on your drawing. I usually tend to start my drawings at the very top and then just work my way down. But you could start anywhere you like. Give yourself a really decent amount of time for this exercise. If you've printed off the image and you're willing to turn off your laptop or computer and just dedicate 15 or 20 minutes to drawing, then that's excellent. It means that you will be really primed to focus and get into your drawing state of mind which is what this exercise will do. Now, I'm talking a lot over this demo but when you do this drawing, try to get really quiet and still if you can. Music does help so you can listen to music if you like, but a quiet uninterrupted state is what you need. Now, as you progress through this project, try to go with exactly the lines that you see and don't try and figure out what they mean or what parts of the horse they represent. Just let your pencil work around the image. Well, I'm going to let the demo run on and maybe speed it up a little bit so that you get to see the whole process. I want you to stick around and wait till the ends where you see the finished product. There really isn't much more to say about this method. Just commit to keeping your reference image upside down for the whole duration of your drawing time. 9. Exercise 3: Still Life with Contours: What happened in the last drawing is that you are observing without labeling the things that you were looking at. Because the image that you're working from was upside down, you maybe didn't immediately recognized the things you are drawing, and that meant that your left side of the brain could opt out of the task and wasn't controlling the top. That meant that your visual side of the brain could take over. Also, another thing that was happening is that you were just drawing the edges or the contours of things, even if you weren't all that aware that you are doing so. For this exercise, we're going to go back to contour drawing because while upside down drawing does have a very big payoff in terms of result, it's not really all that appropriate to turn things upside down every time you want to draw them. Instead, you want to be able to tune in or drop into that visual, bright, responsive mode of drawing where you are just purely observing and being able to draw that way. Contour drawing and blind drawing are really doorways that will allow you to access that pure drawing mode anytime that you want to. For this exercise, we'll go back to contour drawing, and this time, I'm going to introduce you to the idea of cross contours. A cross contour line can go from edge to edge within an object. Whereas a contour line can follow the outer edge of a shape, and the interior contour can follow the edges within that shape. A cross contour is really more of an intuitive line. You might not actually see it on the object itself. It nevertheless describes the angle or the shape of the thing. Cross contours travel from one edge to the other. I call them intuitive lines because this is where you're using your feeling or your knowledge of the object to describe it. Like I said before, you know that something is round, so using a cross contour line like this will give the drawing the effect of roundness. I'm going to show you what I mean as I demo a drawing of this simple still life that I've set up. Then afterwards, I want you to practice something like this yourself. I'll turn my sketchbook so it's landscape, that's going to match my composition. I'll just start drawing very, very likely at first, following the contours. Wherever a line meets another line within the still life, I'm just going to follow that with my pencil. This process is very slow and it's concentrated, but it's a really satisfying way to draw. Because really, I'm just allowing the pencil to follow the lines that I'm not imposing a finished product onto it. Eventually, you'll get to really enjoy the feeling of seeing where the lines take you and investigating the shape and the edges of things. If you want to erase anything in your drawing as you go along, this time, you can definitely do so simply because when you're dealing with a more complex composition like this, it might come together as your drawing progresses, and you might want to erase things out and put things in different places. For example here, I realize that I've drawn this slightly too big, and I'll just erase it out to match the contour lines of my oranges. Be aware that you might not actually believe some of the shapes that you're drawing as being correct. As you're drawing them, you might think, "I'm sure this shape doesn't go here or this doesn't seem to be the right size." But try to trust the lines and trust what you're seeing where the lines meet each other. Because if you are following edges and contours, the drawing will come together almost by itself. Here are some interior contour lines around the orange that I'm going to try and include in order to give the sense of this roundness and describe them as shapes rather than flat circular things. Similarly, with the handle of this tray, I'm going to follow a couple of interior contour lines and use some cross contours to make the shape that I see and to give that sense that it's a solid 3D wooden object. Here I'm going to follow the interior pattern on the tray with some interior contour lines. As you can see, I'm correcting the overall shape or base of the tray, but I'm not going to really worry too much about erasing out my previous lines. Using cross contours on the handle will definitely give it a much more finish and much more structured look. Now I'm going to try and work on the coffee pot, which looks like a very simple shape, but to try and draw that can be a little bit tricky. I just will go really lightly at first and try and just gauge my way around the edges of it and see if I can plot it out for myself a bit lightly before I commit to any darker lines. The key to drawing this shape is to get the angle right. The lower half of the coffee pot definitely has an angle that if it's not right, it's going to look totally off, and then the sides of the top are so dead straight that I probably won't be able to draw a dead straight line, but I'm going to give it a go. Likewise, the curves around the top could also be deceptively tricky to draw. You really just have to look extremely carefully and closely at the object that you're drawing and try to judge for yourself the angle of lines before you commit to them on paper. For example, there's quite a bit of a gap between the bottom half of the coffee pot and the top, so I can't just simply draw a flat line. I've got to try and give the impression that there's that indentation, and the same goes for the bottom. The bottom of the coffee pot doesn't just meet the table flush or straight on, there's a curve at the very bottom that needs to go in to the drawing to make it work really. I'm going to show you a little trick that I do quite often if I'm drawing in my sketchbook to get a straight line. I'll just balance my pencil on the page, and keeping my finger or little finger on the edge of the book and sliding it up and down like that will help to make a really straight line. Because if you hold your pencil like this and also hold the edge of the book, as you draw, you're not going to make a wobbly line, so that's a little trick that I do. You can try it out for yourself if you want. At this stage, I'm very close to finishing off this drawing, I think it's done, and I want you to try and draw a simple still-life in this manner. Now the whole point of this exercise, just to reiterate, I want you to become aware of how even though you see the edge of something, that edge doesn't mean that the shape of the thing stops there at that edge. You know that it continues on past what you see. Somehow your drawing manages to reflect that three-dimensionality when you are considering the contours. Just be aware of how an object disappears around it's perceived edge. Just keep that in mind when you are drawing on a flat 2D surface. Another thing that I really want you to be thinking of or reflecting on as you're drawing, is are you drawing the edge of one object or is it the edge of the object that's next to it or overlapping it? Are you drawing the edge of an object or the edge of the space that surrounds that object? These are things that are really going to help you if you think about them, to drop into that very pure visual and responsive drawing mode. 10. Exercise 4: Blind Drawing: In this exercise, I'm going to get you to draw your hand. You're going to hold your hand in a position that is easy for you to keep for about 15 or 20 minutes and also hold it in an interesting shape, in a pose that's interesting in terms of shape. Something where you'll see a lot of creases. You could look into the palm of your hand, for example, and you could see a lot of creases or scrunch up your fingers so that there's a lot of lines to follow. Then you're going to draw your hand using the technique of contour and cross contour lines that I've been teaching you. But I'm going to add on an extra layer to this exercise and that is that you're going to draw it blind. What that means is that for the duration of the drawing, you're not going to look down at your page. You're going to only look at your hand. That is really important. I don't know if you've come across this exercise before. If you have, you know what I'm talking about. But if you haven't ever heard of this, then really I want you to commit to this challenge of not looking down at your drawing while you're drawing. Simply keep your gaze or your eyes focused on your hand for the whole time. I know you will be sorely tempted to look down at your page. I know this because every time I teach this exercise to my students in life drawing on figure drawing, everybody always tries to sneak a peek at their drawing. But just give it a go and try your best to keep your gaze focused on your hand throughout the exercise. If you are committed to this, you will get such a huge payoff that I promise you it will be worth it. You might not like the drawing that you make, and I'm warning you ahead of time that the drawing that you make won't necessarily look like a hand. More often than not, it'll look like a map of Japan or something like a bunch of scribbles or marks. But the reason I'm getting you to do this exercise is because this is the way to draw that, where you don't put any judgments or preconceptions onto your drawing while you're doing it. You don't have a chance to look down and say, "Oh, that doesn't really look like a hand or my finger and I better change it." You won't have the opportunity to do that. You'll just be following the lines and the shapes and the curves and creases that you see. What we're after here is that cognitive shift, and that will only happen if you bypass this analytical naming side of the brain, the side that tries to control the experience of looking. The important thing that you need to know about this exercise is how to start this. First of all, take a lot of time to just look at your hand and only then decide on a point on your hand where you're going to start the drawing from. What I'm doing here is, I'm going to start at this point, and as my eye travels up along this contour, I'll move my pencil at the exact same rate. Then I might meet a cross contour, and my pencil is just going to follow exactly where my eyes are going all along and so on. That first starting point has to anchor your pencil to your gaze, really trying to convince yourself that your pencil is touching the point on your hand that your eyes are looking at. This drawing in particular, this blind drawing is a very slow type of drawing. Try to slow your gaze down and slow your pencil down as much as possible. This is going to give you the opportunity to see every curve, every bump, or every crease along the way. If you're having trouble keeping your eyes focused on your hand, then sit so that your body is actually facing away from the drawing. Like turn yourself in your chair so that you're at right angles to your drawing. That's going to help you to maybe not see the drawing out of the corner of your eye and will help you to just keep focused on your hand. You're trying to record each and every crease or line that your eye sees. As you can see from my drawing, none of this is in proportion, or none of it matches up to make a nice shape. But I think you should be seeing by now that it is being really well observed. That's what we want to achieve in this exercise. When something is well observed, it's often far more truthful than something that is just rendered in a way that we think is realistic. You might start to notice things that you wouldn't necessarily have noticed before when you do a drawing like this. For example, look at the space between the top of my thumbnail and the actual top of the thumb itself. There's quite a bit of space there and that's probably something I wouldn't have necessarily tuned into until I just started doing this very slow blind drawing. Also, you can notice how the creases connect and divide up the space of the hand into interesting shapes. This exercise should take you about 20 minutes to do. Once you're done, take a photo and send it to me. I'd love to see this drawing. Another good way to practice this intense observation and intense way of looking is to do the exact same drawing using a crumpled up piece of paper. You're just again following the lines and shapes of the crumpled paper, and you could take as long as you like to do this, just get lost in the shapes, and edges, and the lines that you see, and allow your pencil to go on that journey. This, again, isn't necessarily a drawing that you're going to keep. Although I find that it's quite a nice abstract exploration of line. But really it's just a practice to get you to see the edges of things. The beauty, I think of these blind drawings, to me anyway, is that they represent a purely individual mark because they aren't drawings with an outcome in mind, and they aren't drawings that are going to look necessarily like anything. The marks that you use are almost like your signature because only you can look at something in a specific way. The marks that you make in response to that are only marks that you can make if that makes sense. As I said, drawing blind allows you to drop into this purely visual and responsive mindset. Your drawing might not look nice, but what you'll get is a powerfully observed drawing and one that's actually completely unique. 11. Foundation 2: Seeing Relationships: This next section is all about seeing the spatial relationships and the proportional relationships within your subject. By doing this, you'll start to refine accuracy in your drawings and you'll be able to tackle the really complex area of perspective. Everything within a drawing exists in relationship to everything else within that drawing. For example, if I draw a line, it doesn't actually have any characteristics other than it's a line. Not until I draw another line, now I can say that this line is long and this line is short or something like that. What I want you to be able to do is to see shapes in relation to other shapes within the drawing and to judge size and proportion based on that. I'm going to start you off with an exercise where you just draw the space around an object, and this is actually a very powerful technique. It has the same effect as drawing upside-down. Whereas before with the upside-down drawing, it's not really possible to draw everything upside-down, with drawing negative shapes, it's something that you could probably use in your drawing from here on out. I always look for negative shapes in anything that I draw so it's a very useful and very powerful tool. Again, with negative shapes, you're suddenly focused on the space or the shape around an object instead of the object itself. As you guessed it, that goes a long way to allowing your right creative and visual brain to take over the drawing task. After negative space, we're going to look at the whole area of perspective. I'm going to explain the rules of perspective to you. But then I want to show you the artist's way of drawing in perspective known as sighting. This is a tried-and-tested method that you can use without having to break your concentration or to break your drawing mode at all. We'll get to that a little bit later on but up next in the next video, let's look at negative space drawing. 12. Exercise 5: Negative Space: This exercise is going to be in two parts. The first part is just really a warm-up to get you familiar withdrawing negative spaces. It'll just be a very simple version. Then for the second exercise, we'll draw something a little bit more complex. I'll get you to use your viewfinder that I mentioned in the earlier videos. If you take a look at this image here, this is the negative space of this object, and this is the positive space. Negative space is any area that surrounds the object or that is within the object that isn't the object itself. Whenever you're faced with a complex object, you can simplify things by focusing on these spaces. Any space that you see around or inside. This is going to help you draw the shapes so much easier. What you'll do for this exercise is just find a suitable thing to draw. Just keep it simple for now. For me, I'm going to use my headphones because I think there's some nice negative shapes that I can use there especially with the cord as well. The first thing I'm going to do is on a separate piece of paper or a separate page, I'm going to lay down my headphones like this and arrange them for kind of interesting composition like that. Then taking my ruler, I'm going to draw a frame around this entire composition. Basically, just lightly drawing a frame that meets the edges of this object. It doesn't matter if it cuts across the bottom of it, that's totally fine. But just one, so long as you can see a nice frame around your chosen object, whether you're drawing your headphones or something else, remember, work with something that's flat, something that you can lay down on a page like this. Then in my sketchbook, I'm going to make a corresponding frame. I want the two frames to be sort in terms of proportion so that the judgments I make are going to work out for the drawing. Now all I need to do is identify those negative spaces, negative shapes in the composition that I'm looking at. For example, top-left corner here has a shape like that. The bottom left corner, I'm looking at a shape like this somewhat. Because they're curved shapes, it might take me a little bit longer to draw to get a nice smooth steady line, it's a bit trickier. But really, the point of this exercise is to just identify those shapes, I'm not going to worry too much about my line-work. That's how I'm going to move through the whole of the drawing. Interior shape is also very simple when it's broken up and distilled into this easy-to-draw shape, as opposed to having to draw the actual headphones themselves and so on. You get the idea. I'm following the shapes that make up the space around the object, rather than focusing on the shapes of the object itself. Remember, this is just a practice drawing. I'm doing this so that you can get the idea or the concept and just do a bit of a warm-up. I'm not going to worry too much about making a finished drawing here. When I move on to drawing the chair, then I'm going to take my time and really make a better drawing than this. But this is for you to just to understand how to proceed really. Now, I'm going to switch over to the big drawing in this project. I'm going to get my viewfinder, and something I forgot to mention, and I'll mention it now, is that a good idea when you're making your viewfinder is to tape down two pieces of string like this at the halfway points on each side. That gives you a really nice and easy, like cross hairs in your viewfinder, in your frame so that you can identify the center point of your composition. On my page in my sketchbook, I've drawn my halfway marks, my cross-hairs that correspond to the frame in my viewfinder, and this is the image that I'm looking at. I've set up the chair. It's standing on this blue table with the blue tablecloth, and what I'm doing is plashing. I'm plashing out the most important landmarks that I need to know where they are, like the top of the chair or where that blue tablecloth is. Then I'm going to just really simply start drawing in negative spaces. This is an obvious negative space here. It goes all the way down and it hits that blue tablecloth. It's also broken up in the middle by that line there. It's very easy to see when I use these cross lines like these to determine it. Similarly, on this side, I'm going to eyeball the space between the vertical halfway point, that vertical line there, down to the center, across, and then up and over to the top of the chair. That's going to give me that shape. Quite quickly, the silhouette of the chair is actually coming together and I can now identify the center point of my page to the center point of the composition that I'm looking at, and I can see and judge for myself where the top of the seat of the chair. The top of the seat comes about there on this drawing. Now very carefully and slowly, I'm just going to identify the base of the two negative spaces within the back of the chair. That's important. I don't need to go ahead and draw those shapes just yet. But by identifying the base of those shapes, I'll be able to plot out the rest of the chair. These shapes would actually be very tricky to draw. I was just going to sit down and try and draw the chair itself. But for some reason, if I take my focus off of them, it's easier. Now, I've got this big space on the left quadrant to work with. It's a really easy way just to break up that left quadrant and see where is the top of the seat over here. It's about this much of space up from the halfway mark and curves around and it meets the center line just like that. Even though I'm working extremely lightly, I'm mapping out this image for myself so that I know exactly where actually everything is, and it is coming together. There's a couple of places where I can fix. For example, those shapes aren't quite right. There's more space required there between those pieces of wood. But for the most part, I'm getting the structure of the chair down very easily. I always start out drawing extremely light. It's helpful because you can erase things if you want and keep working on them. But it's also because a lot of times your first few marks are just searching investigative marks. You're never going to sit down and just draw straight out of the box like extremely dark, heavy, and completely accurate lines. You'll want to use a very light line to make your construction lines and to plot out your composition. Moving onto the lower half of the chair, the procedure is the same. It's just carefully looking at the shapes and noticing where those shapes are broken up, either by elements within the composition or by elements of my viewfinder, like the cross hairs or the edges of the frame. Just drawing those shapes in and plotting them out like dash. You get the idea, this is how I want you to do this exercise. I'm going to leave off the commentary now and maybe just speed up the video so that you can get to the end and see the finished product. But bear in mind, it is a slow process and I want you to just really enjoy it and enjoy looking for these shapes and putting them together like a puzzle. It is actually very satisfying when it gets to the end. Check it out at the end, see the finished product and then turn off the videos and have a go drawing something yourself. Maybe a bicycle could be something similar, chair, but make sure it's something that is a bit challenging that you probably would feel a bit daunted about drawing yourself, and then, meet me in the next video. 13. Perspective : Up until now you've been working through some very simple, but actually quite powerful exercises that help you to see things as an artist. I hope that you had this experience of what I've been talking about, where you see things in a more visual way than in a verbal or analytical way. This is really what it means look with the eyes of an artist, to see things like an artist. It's really just understanding shapes, seeing how shapes relate to each other, and not really getting bogged down into complexity and detail and then falling into the trap of naming, labeling, or symbolizing things. Seeing or observing in a pure visual way is the most important skill in the global skill set of drawing. I would probably go as far as to say drawing really is all about seeing. Maybe hopefully you had a bit of insight into that up until now. In these next couple of videos, we're going to shift gears a little bit and we're going to move into the somewhat complex area of perspective. You've learned about how to access the drawing mode through contour drawing, through blind contour, and through negative shape drawing. I really want you to continue with these techniques for as long as you can. Don't let them go today just because we're now stepping into something totally new. Keep these front and center in your drawing practice as you move forwards. These are just tools. Eventually you will be able to put these tools down and just draw purely and responsibly. But for as long as you can, I would suggest, and I recommend that you keep blind drawing and contour drawing and negative space drawing as one of your primary go-to drawing techniques. Later on I'm going to talk to you about how to set up your sketchbook and how to work on a daily basis in your sketchbook. I'm going to presume that you'll be using these techniques of contour and blind drawing as a natural part of your methods. All that being said, I'm now going to introduce you to the next level of drawing, which is, as I said, perspective. That's really a skill that comes down to seeing the relationship between shapes. Up until now you just been focusing on the shape of things. Now I'm going to show you how to compare the size of one shape to another within your drawing. Perspective really means that things that are far away from you will appear smaller than the things that are closer to you. That's really perspective in its absolute most simplest terms. There really three things to know about perspective. One is the horizon line. The horizon line when you're drawing from observation will always be your eye level. Wherever you're looking, if you're looking down on something, that means your horizon line is high. If you're looking up at something, it means your horizon line is low. The 2nd thing to know is the vanishing point. The vanishing point is a fixed point on the horizon line. The 3rd thing to know about perspective is converging lines. All the lines that travel away from you towards the horizon will converge on the vanishing point. Perspective does get very complex and complicated very, very quickly, especially if you want to draw in two-point perspective. Or I've even had students who want to draw in three-point or four-point perspective and they haven't quite mastered one-point perspective yet. I'm going to show you a way to approach perspective that doesn't have to get technical because really we're not interested in making a technical drawing at the moment. There's plenty of room in another course to do technical drawings and to use layouts and perspective grids and do two, three, or four-point perspectives. But for now, I want to show you how to measure things within your drawing in perspective using the tool called sizing, which I talked about earlier. First, I'm going to get you to draw a very simple still life and then we'll follow that with a drawing of an interior. 14. Exercise 6: Sighting: To start out for this exercise, I'm going to draw my frame on my page in my sketchbook, just like I did before. This is going to correspond to my viewfinder frame, which I'm going to use for this drawing. Very lightly, once I've got my frame in place, I will divide it up into halves by finding the halfway point of the top and the bottom, and then drawing very lightly my vertical line, and then the halfway point on either side and drawing a horizontal line. This is going to correspond exactly to the crosshairs in my viewfinder, and it'll help me to frame up to composition. Immediately I can see that the jar, the pumpkin, and the teapot, all come into play in the lower half, and the tops of all of those three objects meet at my horizontal halfway line. Now I can just very lightly plot in the table. With those very few construction marks, I'm going to get started, so sizing really is very easy. You hold your arm out completely straight, you close one eye, and what that does is it just makes your composition flatten out a little bit. Close one eye and hold your pencil in your hand, very loosely. I balance it between my fourth finger and my fifth finger, I don't hold it clutched like that. This allows my thumb to move up and down like that, and the idea is that you line up the top of your pencil with the top of the object that you're measuring, and then slide your thumb up and down to find the bottom of the object. Once you've got that measurement located onto your pencil, you can then use that specific length and measure it against other objects within your composition. What I'm going to do on my page, first of all, is make marks that will indicate the length of the jar, because I've decided that I want the jar that's holding the two big leaves, that's going to be my basic unit of measurement for my drawing. In my drawing I'm going to draw the jar, and I can make it any size really when I first draw the length of it, because if I made a very small jar, then that would just mean that the rest of my composition would be very small because I'm measuring the length of that against everything else. Then I'm going to go back to my still life, I'm going to find the measurement for the width. I'm going to compare that now, when I look at it, it's the exact same as the width between the jar and the teapot. On my page, I'm going to find the width of the jar and place it next to it, and that will be the width of the space between the jar and the teapot. I know already that the teapot ends, the top of the teapot is at my horizontal line. Similarly, I'm going to take a measurement for the distance from the edge of the jar to the start of the teapot, and then I'm going to find that that's more or less roughly the same as the entire width of the teapot itself. On my drawing, I'm going to measure the distance between the edge of the jar to the edge of the teapot, which is about there, and then I know that that's going to also represent the exact widest width of the teapot. That base of the teapot where it's at its widest is the same length, and then I can just simply make some marks on my page to indicate the outer edge of the teapot. Now I know the exact width of the teapot, I know the width of the jar, and I know the width of the space between the jar and the teapot. Now I'm going to measure the length of the jar against the length of the stalks of the big leaves, so it's about one measurement. I measure my jar on my page, take it up one length, and that's going to be more or less the top of the stalks of each of these two leaves. I can just really try to get that angle right as well, so looking at the angle of that stalk. The leaf is going to come down there. But this stalk curves and angles down towards the jar like so. I'm pretty happy enough with that, I'm going to just maybe get a bit more definite now with my jar, I know that is rock-solid within my composition. So I can work on the contours of the jar and I can just get it more defined within my drawing. This is really the anchor, if you like, of the whole drawing. I can come back to details later, but now that's given me a bit more of a confidence in terms of knowing where everything is, I know that the stalk of this leaf is coming down there like dash, and into the jar, and that's where the label is, for the jar. Really your process or your method throughout this drawing is to constantly compare what you're drawing to something else within the drawing. Like comparing distances between leaves using negative shapes, if you draw one part of the leaf here, look and see where it matches up on the other leaf. Again, it's a very slow process. I want you to really take your time when you're plotting and measuring like this because if you rush this, then you won't get the accuracy that you're after. I know everyone's always really keen on getting accuracy right in their drawing. Apart from sizing and measuring in this way, the most important thing to do in order to get accuracy is to just take your time. Draw really slowly, really concentrated. If you need to take a break, do so and come back later. But definitely don't rush your drawing. For example, I've already spotted that I've made a big mistake there probably because I rushed it. But the top of the pumpkin isn't quite right so I'm going to have to come back in and fix that up. The top of the pumpkin actually is slightly above the jar. From my point of view, from where I'm looking at, the camera angle on the photo is probably very different. But from my viewpoint, the stalk of the pumpkin actually doesn't even reach above the pumpkin itself. It's all about making those adjustments, keeping things very light at this stage so that you actually can erase them out. You're not committing to anything definite right now. I'm going to work on the teapot now and try and get this shape correct. I'm happy enough that the measurement is okay. I know that the base of the teapot is actually slightly below the base of the jar. In terms of plotting at the shape, I've done most of the hard work. Now I just want to work on getting it to look right. Looking at those curves, especially at the base, you could be fooled into thinking that it just comes down and sits flat onto the table. It actually curves in a very intricate way. We're actually going to measure again because I need to measure the length from the base of the teapot to the part where it curves in towards the lid. That's the same as the width of the widest part of the teapots. We start to get a bit more defined there and a bit more accurate actually. I would probably say that my sizing is more or less done for now for this drawing. I've cited everything that I need to. Everything, even at this stage, looks completely in proportion with each other. Really, all that's left now for me to do in this drawing is make maybe some contour drawing or some negative space drawing and try to refine this as much as I can and start to work on the details. It won't be until the very, very end of the exercise that I'll actually start to put in some more heavy and darker lines. 15. Exercise 7: Sighting an Interior: I'm setting myself up for this drawing. I'm just going to use one pencil, my eraser, and a ruler because in my composition there's actually a lot of vertical and horizontal lines. So I'll definitely be making use of my ruler. As usual, the first thing I'm going to do is very lightly draw in a frame. That frame is going to correspond to my viewfinder frame. I'll also draw in vertical and horizontal halfway marks. Now looking through my viewfinder, this is the composition that I'm going to work with. I'm framing up the doorway so that it's just inside the frame of my viewfinder. For this drawing, there really isn't anything brand new to do here. Start out using the ideas of negative space and contour drawings that I taught you in order to judge where the edges of your composition meet the edges of your frame. As I said before, I always start out really light and loose. I recommend that you do the same. What I'm doing here is really just parsing and sketching. I'm not trying to get anything down definite at all just yet. I'm sizing up where the elements of the composition meet the edges of the frame. I'm judging things in a very loose way so that the overall placement can come together. I'm going to work in this way for quite a while and I'm going to really take my time. If you allow a lot of time in the beginning to draw very lightly and feel your way around the composition like this, then you will be able to build it up slowly and you'll avoid making any mistakes. I've got this door here in the main half of my composition and the door frame on the right-hand side. That's the first thing that I need to plot out. I can start to plot out the balcony beyond the doorway, the railings and that post that's in the middle of the balcony. That's a very basic, rough and loose plotting stage. Now I'm going to jump over to Photoshop quickly because I want to explain how you're going to proceed from now on with finding your angles. That's the next phase of the drawing, tackling the perspective in this drawing. It's just going to be a lot easier for me to explain this to you in Photoshop. Here's the image of what I'm looking at for my drawing. This is my frame. Now all of the vertical elements like the door and the post, for the most part, they're fine. They're just completely straight up and down. But you can see on the horizontals that there is perspective. I want to determine that perspective for my drawing. If I draw a completely straight line at the base of this door, for example, immediately you can see how the bottom of the door angles away from that horizontal line. That's the angle that you want to draw in your drawing. Likewise, you can find a perspective on the balcony railing by just comparing the top of the railing to a completely straight line. That's your angle right there. The same on the bottom of the railing. That's that angle. I'm going to show you how you do this in your drawing. Obviously, you don't have to draw straight lines onto your drawing. What you're going to do is use your pencil. I just wanted to show you the concept of angles in your drawing and how to find them. If you hold your pencil up in front of you and get it totally straight, you can use that as the straight line to judge your angles against. Together with that sizing and plotting I'm also going to be using my measuring that I told you about how to sight by taking the measurement of one thing on your pencil and then comparing it to the size of another thing. I'm still working very light and rough, but my lines are not straight at all, but that's completely okay. I'm going to go over them later. For now, it's way more important to work on getting the angles correct and getting the shape, the special relationships working. So far, I think it's coming together. In my drawing, I've got this very complex set of beams going on in the ceiling of the balcony. Now, I will recommend that you don't choose something like this. This is a bit tricky because each of these are at different angles. I think rather stick to something that's a bit more straightforward when you're starting out, just pick a doorway or a corner of the kitchen or a corner of your bedroom or something to draw. Well, I'm fairly happy with that. I think I've got everything in its place. I've worked out all the major landmarks for myself, taking care of all of that. Now I'm going to move ahead and start drawing in more defined straight lines with my ruler. I think I'll speed up the video and we'll see how we get on. Really, as I said, the main work is done. All that measuring and checking of angles, that was all the hard work. Now it's just about filling in this drawing based on my very rough and loose sketch. All right. That was a bit of careful work, but I finally got everything drawn in place. I think it's looking just fine. What I can do now, just to break it up a little bit is switch over to some contour drawing for these organic shapes of my pot plants that's nice to give a bit of a change for all those vertical and horizontal lines. I'm also going to fill in the balcony railing as best I can, but I'm not going to draw each and every post. I just really want to give an impression of the railings. I'll tidy up my lines as best I can. That's about it. That's my finished drawing. Now, it's over to you to have a go at drawing an anterior yourself using the method of sizing, as well as the method of judging angles. Have a go and have fun at least, and give yourself about an hour of decent drawing time. When you're ready, I'll see you in the next video. 16. Foundation 3: Seeing Form: This section is going to focus on the next level of drawing. That's how to see the whole form of your subject, not just the contours or the shapes. You'll start off learning how to see light and shadow and how to treat that in your drawing. Then I'll teach you one of the most powerful drawing techniques that I know that will help you to describe weight, and mass, and shape and energy of an object. This section is going to round off your knowledge of drawing, going from perceiving edges to understanding spatial relationships, to being able to draw the whole form in a really three-dimensional, believable way. That represents your drawing journey, and it's really the sum total of everything that you'll ever need to unlock your own artistic voice. I think that this journey represents a skill set that's far more valuable than learning to draw something in a step-by-step way, or learning how to draw something from a template. This allows you to be original, to be unique, and to be able to put pencil to paper and confidently know that you can draw anything because you are responding in a very visual way. The two things that I cover in this section, both light and shadow and gesture drawing, they're very different, but they both work towards helping you describe something on paper in a very tactile and very real way. 17. Drawing Light and Shadow: When it comes to light and shadow, just like with perspective, things can get very tricky and very complicated quite quickly. Light and shadow is often approached with a lot of rules and sciency sounding parameters. Just like I was telling you about perspective, what you want to do is really stay focused on your responsive and intuitive way of drawing, so that you don't break out of that into the left-brain mode of analyzing, labeling because that will really break down your drawing practice, or that would really break down your drawing process. For me, there's one very simple way to approach light and shadow. That is, much like I showed you when you are sighting and taking proportions with one basic unit and using dash to measure against all the other shapes in your drawing, with light and shadow, finding your darkest spot within your composition and then relating all your other shading areas to that darker spot is the simplest and easiest way to approach it. Another really important thing to do is to try and see the shadows and the areas of light within your composition as shapes in and of themselves. Once you can do that and eyeball the shapes of the shadows, then you'll be putting them in the right place relative to your drawing and relative to the overall shapes within your drawing. Always look at your shadows in terms of their shapes. Usually when it comes to light and shadow, there are three main things that you can draw. You can draw a highlight, a mid tone, and a dark tone. Now these are called values. A value is really the relative lightness or darkness of a color. On a sphere like this, you've got a highlight. Here is called a crest shadow, which moves progressively from mid tone to dark tone. Then you've got a cast shadow. Right about here on the cast shadow and here on the crest shadow, would be where the darkest spots are. These are the darkest spots because it's where the falling light is almost completely blocked out. Obviously, on a sphere like this, it's really easy to see one other component of shadows, and that's reflected light. That's right here, that's any light that's gone around the edges of a form and hit the ground and it's bouncing backup. On a cube or a flat plane, the values on each side are uniform, so there's a lot more of a definite edge to each one. 18. Exercise 9: Gesture Drawing: We're nearly at the end of the course, well done for getting this far and for sticking with me. I'm really proud of you. It's actually quite a big achievement and I want you to take a moment to just congratulate yourself for getting this far. I know that taking a course online has its challenges, especially for something like drawing, but I don't underestimate for a moment the really deep work that you've done in even just allowing yourself the time and the space really to work in your sketchbook and to learn these drawing skills. I just want to take a brief moment to recap before I move into the next exercise, and I want to remind you about the fact that drawing is actually a global skill. What I mean by that is that it's made up of component skills. It's not just one skill in and of itself. Drawing is made up of perceiving edges, perceiving spaces and shapes, and it's also made up of a knowledge and perception of form. That last one can be thought of as the one component that brings all of the other skills together. It's really an important one. It's probably the most crucial, this idea of seeing or understanding your subject as a whole. Understanding your subject either through light and shade rendering or through gesture drawing, that is what makes your drawing progress from being a flat 2D diagram to something that actually has substance. A drawing that in and of itself has a quality of realness. When I talk about something being real or a drawing being real, I'm not really talking about accuracy. For me, accuracy isn't really a component skill of drawing. Now I've taught you techniques that can help you to draw accurately. You don't have to make a photographically realistic drawing in order for the drawing to be a good drawing. So all of this leads me to the last technique that I want to teach you, and that's gesture drawing. When people try to achieve realness in their drawings, they often focus on accuracy and realism. But gesture, which is nearly the opposite of realism, is a very special technique to make your drawing real, and by that I mean solid, unique, believable, and engaging. The reason being is that gesture unlocks your own natural expression, and to me, that's the most real thing that you could put into your art. If you've taken any of my other drawing courses, you'll know that I place a huge emphasis and importance on gesture drawing. This is because even though it's often very misunderstood and hugely simplified, gesture drawing as I teach it is a powerful tool to help you draw dynamic and expressive drawings. Drawing gesturally or expressively is really all about capturing the essence or the energy of an object that goes beyond its form. In order to explore this way of drawing, let's start out with something fairly simple. For this exercise, I'm going to demo gesture drawing by drawing a pot plant. I want you to actually do as many gesture drawings as possible. Don't just stop with one example or one exercise. Try to fill up few pages in your sketchbook with gesture drawings of objects, spaces, places, or even people. I'll show you in the next video how to do gesture drawing of people in your sketchbooks. But the idea is just like we did contour and blind drawing, I would really hope that gesture drawing becomes part of your daily sketchbook practice. The technique of gesture drawing involves scribbles, but these scribbles are not random. Make sure that you're observing your subject really closely, almost as though you were engaged in blind contour drawing. Those scribbles are going to match exactly what you're observing. The marks have to correspond to your observation in the exact same way as when you're doing a contour drawing. In other words, the scribbly marks have to match a very intense looking. The second point is that you are drawing with these scribbles and these gesture lines as though the thing that you're describing or the thing that you're looking at is see-through. So you're really aiming to draw the front and the back and the sides on your page all at once. This is what's going to give us that sense or that feeling that the object is almost something tangible, something that you're holding in your hand. Gesture drawing is actually all about the sense of touch, the weight of the object. If it's heavy, your marks will be dark. If it's light, your marks will reflect that feeling of lightness. Thirdly, keep your pencil in contact with your paper throughout the drawing exercise. This is what's going to help you to keep engaged with your mark making and to feel like the weight and size of the object through your marks. Again, just imagine that you're holding the thing that you're drawing in your hand, that will really help you. Finally, gesture drawing is not about drawing outlines or edges. Forget completely about the edge of the contours. Think only about the weight and the space that the object takes up. That means that your line is going to go way beyond the perceived edges. Sometimes it will find a contour, but mostly it's going to be free to be either inside or outside the object. Now it's over to you. Just take a few moments. Gesture drawings are fast, they're quick. You don't have to labor over them or spend too much time. Take about 10 minutes and see if you can do 10 drawings in 10 minutes. Then when you're ready, come back and meet me in the next video, going to show you how to approach drawing figures in your sketch book. 19. Exercise 10: Drawing People with Gesture: For this very last exercise, I'm going to demo how to draw people or figures in your sketchbook using this technique of gesture drawing. Now up until now, I'm not sure if you're aware, but there's been quite a lot of background noise that I've had to contend with while I've been shooting these videos. There happens to be a building site next door to my studio, and it's been for the most part, very annoying because every time I hit record or try to record at least, I've got jackhammers, drills, people shouting, and it's been challenging. Today I thought, why don't I just use that to our advantage. We're going to pop out onto the balcony and I'm going to show you from up here how to draw in your sketchbook and use this technique of gesture drawing to draw people. The way you can apply it in your context is you could take your sketchbook out to the park, or you could go to a coffee shop or even on your commute to work, if you take the train or the bus, just have your sketchbook on your lap and draw people around you in the way that I'm going to show you. Let's head out. That's the noise. I think I might just turn that noise off and I don't have to put you through that. But as you can see in this shot, this is how I'm setting up my drawing sketchbook. I've attached it to a drawing board and it's up on an easel. This is really just so that I can draw standing up for this session. But when you're working in your sketchbook and you're in a coffee shop or the park, whatever, you'll just be using your sketchbook on your lap. Obviously, you don't need to have it setup like this. It just makes it easier for me to film when it's set up on an easel. Looking down at this building site, I'm actually going to start with these two guys who are standing on the corner. While I'm drawing here, it's not a great angle, I'm going to change the camera angle in a minute so that you can see the drawing. I just want to explain first that with this exercise or this method of drawing, capturing people, even if people move around and change position, almost like moment-to-moment, that shouldn't really matter to what you're doing because you're just doing gesture drawings and you're not trying to make a portrait at all. You're not even trying to make a finished drawing. You're really just trying to capture a line or two that will capture the pose. Bear in mind, it's really fast and fleeting, and that's actually why it's such a powerful training for you in order to get good at drawing. Here's another shot that I took. It's a better angle, there's a group of guys standing together down here discussing the bricks. I guess what I'm going to do is when I start off gesture drawing in my sketchbook, I just choose one figure. The way I approach it is I'll quickly mark down the really important aspects of that pose that I see. Those are usually the head, the shoulders, the hips, and the legs. I always try to hit those landmarks first, get them down on the page as quickly as I can, and then I can work back into the drawing and add arms, hands, or details of the clothing, for example. Again, movement doesn't bother me. If the guy does move away completely, then I just don't finish, I'll move on to the next one. Often I'll draw the same figure over and over again because that person has moved into a different position. When that happens, that's an opportunity to just draw a new pose. There is also this guy who's bending over with the bricks, I guess, that's like a bit of a different pose to the standing up ones. Then I spotted these two guys on the scaffolding, so I worked on these poses for a while. Now, I've got a photo of them, but obviously they were moving around a lot. But from this photo, this is the general poses that they were in. Remember, gesture drawing isn't really about drawing exact and accurate images. You're practicing how to capture the feeling of the pose. You can be as messy as you like. You can use very free and loose line work. At least just try to draw in the main landmarks that I mentioned earlier, the head, the shoulders, the hips, and the legs. Eventually, when you get really comfortable with this practice of gesture drawing, especially drawing people in this way, you'll get very good at infusing your drawing with an energy or a character that really can only come from this observation and this work. Now if you don't feel comfortable drawing in a public space, then start off drawing family and friends at home, if they don't mind. Just make sure that you've got your sketchbook and pencil ready. Wherever you see an opportunity to draw a pose, then go for it, even if it's just drawing your pet dog or your pet cat. Remember gesture drawings are fast, so you can see that it's only been about five minutes and I've made about six or eight drawings, so keep it loose and simple. 20. Conclusion: Well, we've reached the end of the course. Well done for getting this far. That's a great achievement. Thanks very much for sticking through it right to the very end, and I sincerely hope that you've got some useful and valuable information out of this course. I hope it inspired you to draw from now on with confidence, but I know how hard it is to keep motivated and to keep this new skill going if you don't have ongoing support. How to move forward from here. Well, my advice to you is to use the exercises in this course as a structure for your work going forwards. Work with the techniques that I've taught you over and over again. The exercises here are not really meant to be just one-off exercises, they teach you the techniques that you are meant to work with as much as you can again and again. Work on contour drawings, work on your negative space drawings, work on blind drawings, and work with this method of sizing that I taught you when you're drawing scenes or places or still life. What I want you to do is to set yourself a challenge to draw for just 10 minutes every day. I promise you the hardest part of that is going to be opening your sketchbook. Once you've opened your sketchbook every day, the drawing part is easy. You'll always have something to draw because I've taught you how to draw from observation. You just have to look around and choose anything you want. Even the most boring or mundane objects can become fascinating once you look at it for awhile and start drawing it. Before I go, I want to leave you with a couple of recommendations for books if you want to read further about some of the stuff that I've been talking about in this course. These are really my go-to books for drawing. I would probably say that these are nearly the only books that I rely on heavily. The first one is called The Natural Way To Draw. That's it there. This is really about figure drawing, but what this guy writes about in terms of contour drawing is really good, so I would highly recommend that you get this book, especially for the contour drawing sections, and one day you will probably move on to drawing the figure, and then you'll have this as your go-to book for figure drawing. Then the next book, which I mentioned earlier in the course, is Drawing On The Right Side of The Brain' by Betty Edwards. Again, this is an excellent book to work with and to refer to. It can be a little bit in depth. I think for a beginner, it's quite widely in terms of its research. As a practical workbook, there are some very useful exercises in which I've taught you in this course anyway, like negative space drawing, sizing, but if you want to read more about, say the science part of right and left brain processes and how that affects drawing, definitely get that book. Those are the two books that I highly recommend. I wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for these two books. Definitely it's worth investing in them if you love drawing, if you're serious about improving your drawing. Really that's all that there is for me to say. The last thing is just to say, thank you so much for choosing this course. Thank you very much for sticking through it to the very end. Please stay in touch, I'll keep you posted about my next drawing course, and I hope to see you in there.