Drawing Unknown Faces, part 150

17 May

Originally uploaded by MCFull [Memory Card Full]

I found this image with zFlick and the search term “surprise”. I didn’t have any preconceptions about drawing when I saw this image. I just wanted to experiment a bit with slightly different poses than the one in the photo.

It didn’t seem much of anything, but I tried it anyway. I just wanted to scribble away for the sake of scribbling. I had no intention of putting these sketches up on my blog.

And guess what? I actually learned something. Drawing the features isn’t enough, you have to imagine how those features interconnect, how muscles underneath the skin contract and relax, how the bone structure shines through what you see, without really being visible.

It’s like you suddenly have x-ray vision and can see through. But that’s not all. You can also envision what it’s like to be that person, to feel what she was feeling at the moment this picture was taken.

It’s this clarity of mind I should be after. The skills should follow that. In fact, the clarity of mind should form the skills, make them better, by conscientiously drawing the human being at the other end.

I hope this doesn’t come over as too high-felutant.. I’m just not very good with words, not in my own language, and certainly not in a foreign language (i.e. English). Or perhaps it is something which can only be expressed through images. If that is true, it would explain why I couldn’t find a good description in any of my drawing books. It is something you need to experience, and it can’t be put into words (well, I gave it my best shot).

So, here are the rough sketches which led to all this self-reflection.

Drawing Unknown Faces, part 150

If I look back on what I did, analyzing, I should use a reference photo to draw a slightly different pose. This forces me to see all the aspects of a human face as they are in the pose of the reference photo, without having to draw a human head from scratch. I guess that isn’t something you can do consciously (with words), but you obviously can do it visually (without words), because I just did.

That is all.

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