Evaluating Different Transferring Methods

Evaluating Different Transferring Methods - student project

Hello everyone! This is my class project for my new class, Embracing Tracing: Transferring Reference Images for Watercolor. While this class project isn't as flashy or exciting as others may be, I still absolutely want to encourage exploration and learning through it. I'm going to show you my own sketches from this class, along with the self reflection I'd love to see reflected in your projects as well!


Freehand Drawing: Here is my freehand drawing of the german shepherd. Due to my paper laying flat on the table instead of angled so that it was parallel to my vision, the proportions ended up quite a bit off. I struggled with the top line of the face, which in turn trickled to other issues, such as the location of the eye and nose. The too-wide head, too-wide neck, and too-large eye made the sketch look more illustrative than intended.

Freehand Drawing with Tracing Overlay: Here is the same original freehand drawing in red. After I finished, I put it on my light table and traced the image again in blue pencil to easily compare the two. This clearly shows where my proportions are off, and where I can look to improve next time. However, I am glad to see that several of the lines matched up perfectly!

Grid Method: This method provided tools to more accurately draw the dog, but was my least favorite method. I struggle with patience and attention issues, so setting up the grid and erasing it after is not my favorite. It was interesting to see that I did still make some interesting mistakes. The forehead was actually less accurate, the eye is still too big, and the muzzle feels too rounded. It feels more fox-like than german shepherd-like.

Transfer Paper: The transfer paper was accurate and produced a usable drawing. However, I would like to have more freedom with my sketch than this method allows for. After I trace, I like to be able to change things as needed, which is hard to do with a medium that doesn't erase easily and doesn't match the exact look of my pencils. I'd still be happy to use this method in my sketchbooks, where light tablets are hard to use. 

Light Tablet: This is by far my favorite transfer method. It is efficient and tidy, with the only drawback being that it doesn't work well in sketchbooks. It allows me to draw with my own pencils, and after I get the proportions down, I can remove it from the light tablet to add my own touches. 

Watercolor Artist & Content Creator