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Lesson Plans

Re: figure drawing

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
kprs (kprs)
Tue, 08 Oct 1996 13:01:52 -0700

Heidi McElroy wrote:
> Hi , drawing suggestions...warm up with a series of gesture drawings. I
> time my students. We do 5 minute drawings, 3 minute and 1 minute. I
> usually call out what kind of a pose to strike. Think athletic things or
> children's games. Incidentally I have my students model on a table...makes
> seeing easier.
> Try dressing up your models...a costume, a uniform...a hat...a cape.
> Try a pose that requires foreshortening..[.not boring] and show
> students they should make the part closest to them extra large for
> emphasis.
> Another warm-up exercise I do is tornado people. Draw the volume of
> wind around a student like they are a human tornado.
> Add one color to the completed drawing for emphasis. Use a colored
> wash for this.
> I'll be interested in more new suggestions myself.
> Heidi McElroy

One exercise I do that the students like is contour line drawing in 3
different poses in 4 different colored fine line markers.

I take something that requires motion, i.e. sitting down, walking and
divide it up into three contrived poses. (I usually pose, because I can
not get enough images of myself in triple chins, sagging breasts, and
slumped shoulders)

Try the sitting one first. I place a chair up on a table (my tables are
long work tables). My first pose is standing in front of the chair.
They take on marker, do a contour line drawing of me in one color, and a
contour line drawing of the chair in another color.

For the next drawing I pose slightly seated (yes, gang, this takes
concentration, good knees, and an idea that the kids with your rear view
will be doing you NO favors), slightly seated means, holding on to the
chair, head bent forward, butt high, but not in the chair. They are to
take another marker, draw me contour line on top of the other drawing ,
leave the chair in the same place and do not draw it. For this I do not
move my feet at all from the original position, so they can use that as
a starting place. (At this point when I am most vulnerable, they start
yelling how insane I am).

You guessed it, last drawing I am sitting, and they do another contour
line in the last color marker.

They like to look of the piece, because you can actually get the notion
of the motion. Compare the drawing to DuChamp's Nude Descending
Staircase. (OK, so I am not nude, nor descending.......)

I have also posed where I have had animated conversations with myself in
3 poses, or walked across the table, or as someone recently suggested,
doing the steps of the macarena. The key for this piece is that they
are overlapping, and in different colors for distinction.

I must say, because I have been doing this sort of thing for years, and
rarely move, the students do think I am nuts, and give me added respect
because somehow they tie this all to mysticism, yoga, or sheer will. I
prefer to see it as sleeping with my eyes open, it is the only chance I
get to REST!

San D