Excited and honoured to be an Associate at 44AD, Bath
44AD Artspace, Bath
I am very happy to be an associate artist at 44AD Artspace in Bath since last week. I already had the chance to meet some of the artists of the community during an “artsocial event” where two of the artists presented their work to other members of 44AD.
Shortly after, I attended a very interesting print exhibition. Apart from admiring the art work being displayed, artists were present offering a great opportunity for fruitful discussions about a field for which I admittedly my knowledge is limited.
I am really looking forward to meeting the rest of the artists working in the artspace studios and attending more exhibitions. If you are around in Bath please do visit 44AD as there are loads going on.
*Photos included in this article are all screenshots from 44AD website. Please visit the community’s website by clicking here.
Continuing the line of Classical Greek philosophers, this is the bust of Socrates. Socrates is one of the founders of western philosophy and despite not having any surviving writings of his, references by others inform us about his valuable work and thoughts. Socrates was teacher of Plato who in turn was teacher of Aristotle (see BUST – 3); all of them very important philosophers of Ancient Greece.
This bust; as previously; is drawn using charcoal and a kneadable eraser. After tone was applied I just used my finger tips to blend where required. Similar technique and steps were followed as previous pieces of this collection (see BUSTS).
A very rough grid was drawn firstly. To do this I just compared the total length of the bust to its total width (not including the plinth). Doing this helped me define the correct proportions of the main shape of the head. In this case, as the bust is slightly tilted to the left, defining the middle point of the face was not particularly helpful. I trusted my instinct and after measuring the proportion of the forehead compared to the total length of the head I made the first charcoal marks showing Socrates’ eyes and eyebrows. To be as accurate as possible and to take into account the perspective of the “mask” I used a slender needle and plotted on my paper the lines connecting the ends of the two eye brows. In the same step I quickly sketched the outline of the nose too.
Using the same technique (needle to measure proportions of lines and angles caused by perspective) I formed the outline of the head and roughly sketched the hairline. After the basic shape of the philosopher’s face was on my sketch pad, I erased back to the point I was just able to see my previous lines. I then started to define better all lines and make more confident charcoal marks.
…I erased back to the point I was just able to see my previous lines…
When I felt comfortable with the shapes and outlines I had, I moved on to my favourite part…adding tone! First, I added smaller amounts of tone just to define different planes on the man’s face. Forehead, cheeks and chin are probably the ones that will make your drawing stand out immediately. From then on it is a matter of adding detail and showing the shadows and light on the face more accurately.
Final step after I am happy that the amount of detail I wanted to show is there…is to go back and strengthen the tone and highlights where necessary. I quite enjoy this final process as I believe it makes my drawing more vivid and the additional contrasts capture the eye and attention.
Drawing Socrates was very enjoyable and helped me understand better how face lines work in perspective when the head is slightly turned to the one side!
I hope you enjoyed reading this! You can see my previous bust drawings here:
THE ARTIST SAYS…
“Busts is a collection of charcoal drawings which represents my first steps in the world of life drawing and drawing of human figures and faces in general. In these first drawings I am just trying to put in practice the theory that I read in sketching books or the instructions that our tutor gives during our life drawing classes. Hopefully, as I progress and practice more, the quality of my drawings will improve and more confident lines and powerful tone contrasts will appear.”
Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves. Meet the man behind the scenes. Visit THE ARTIST…
“Juif Gaetan is seriously interested in painting in the age of 25. He is self-taught painter working mainly on the paint substance, experimenting by adding unconventional materials like coffee and acid. His first achievements dealt only with the work of the susbtance of paint itself in an instinctive way. Only hand-made and slowly he goes to a more representational style for to be able to communicate also other messages; that only that of the instinct.
He is also an author, songwriter and performer, having realized 7 albums to date.”
Loved Juif’s art? Follow his work on social media:
“My name is Alice Frankovich. I am a self taught abstract/fluid artist based in San Diego, California. Growing up, both of my parents were very artistic. My dad had an extraordinary imagination and my mom could draw or paint just about anything. Their influence definitely contributed to the love and need for art to be a part of my life. For years, my medium was just a #2 pencil. I spent countless hours as a teenager sketching animals, nature, and even portraits of my friends. Over time I dabbled in pottery, fimo clay, water colours, and candle making. About 10 years ago, I started to paint acrylic abstracts and absolutely loved it. About a year ago, I stumbled upon fluid painting. I still paint with brushes and dabble in other mediums, but fluid painting has become my favourite medium. With this medium, there is little control, and I am loving that challenge. Learning different ways to manipulate the paint into a design or something that is beautiful, has been extraordinarily fun and rewarding.”
Loved Alice’s art? Follow her work on social media:
“Hi! I’m Dina from Dee’s Fine Art. I live in Seattle, and am originally from Egypt. I used to be a product manager in the tech industry but a few years ago I quit to pursue my artistic ambitions. I wrote a fantasy novel that will be published soon, and have taken up full time painting. I use both oil and acrylic paints, but I really love the oils. I love painting fluid art, abstract art, landscapes, and am currently fascinated with painting the human figure.”
Loved Dina’s art? Follow her work on social media:
Today was Tessa’s last week (she might be back though later this year – see previous sessions with Tess here TESS and here TESS – 2). I admit I went to class quite late and thus i almost missed the first short pose. I manage to work for about 2minutes on that (third picture below). Although I knew I wouldn’t have enough time to do a proper drawing I challenged myself and joined the others as quickly as possible. I am quite happy with the result.
After this rush, there were 2 more short poses about 5 minutes each (first and second picture below). Here I had slightly more time to work the shape and add some indicative tones. This was a good warm up for the following long pose.
As usual the long pose was carefully set up by the tutor so people could continue their sketches from previous weeks. As I have done previously, I changed my position completely so I can practice sketching from a different angle. Today I got a seat looking at the models back which despite having less detail to sketch, it was really interesting. I learned about the different planes that a person’s back forms and how the light is being affected by these planes (last two photos below and cover photo).
I am quite happy with my sketches this time. I see there is loads to improve, however it was the first time my tutor complimented my work! She commented on the back’s planes and the light reflection on those but generally she was happy with my development. Really looking forward to next life drawing session next week!
…it was the first time my tutor complimented my work!
The Artist says:
“Since I joined the life drawing classes, I have really developed a completely different way of looking at the objects around me. I try to spot the details and I try to understand how different elements of an object affect the proportions, the shape and the tone. Studying the human body is quite challenging but really rewarding!”
Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…
“My name is Fiona Mc Govern and I come from a small town in Ireland. I have, since childhood always loved drawing, painting and creating. I have dabbled with oils but never really took to them as a medium. I found acrylic about 10 years ago and have not looked back. I am self taught and learning everyday. I paint anything but especially love urban landscapes. I love abstract/impressionist styles which give freedom of colour and structure. Art should not only grab your attention but it should hold it and always encourage you to colour outside the lines.”
Loved Fiona’s art? Follow her work on social media:
So…this was the second Monday drawing Tess; she will be with us for one more week. Again, our tutor introduced us to the main subject of study…that was muscles around the breast, the shoulders and the shoulder blades. As usually the model posed for 3-5min in different positions highlighting how these muscles stretch and contract.
Following a short tea break we got back to class for the long pose which we agreed last week. Although I didn’t manage to complete my drawing last week, I decided to change position so I had the chance to practice looking from a different angle. As you have probably understood already my aim is not to create a portfolio of complete drawings at this stage, but to practice my drawing skills.
This week I was really pleased to reach even closer to a more complete result. I was happy to understand how the bones under and around the neck sit and how the muscles pull around the shoulders. Next week I ll focus even more on this (I ll be starting a new sketchpad anyway…you can see the lines from a previous quick sketch I had to erase as I ran out of paper…).
“…my aim is not to create a portfolio of complete drawings at this stage, but to practice my drawing skills.”
I understand there is plenty of work to be done here, however in combination with practising on Busts I feel experience is building up. If you have any feedback even at this very early stage I would be happy to hear!
The Artist says:
“I recently decided to attend Life Drawing classes; all the work produced during these classes can be found in this collection.
The sketches here are not necessarily finalised pieces of work; this is not my intention anyway. This collection mainly aims to provide with a timeline showing how my work improves as I attend more and more classes. Hopefully, building up experience and skill will be reflected on the quality of my sketches.”
Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…
“I am a self taught portrait and animal artist based in Manchester, UK. At a young age I began experimenting with art (I come from a very artistic family, so art was always a large part of my life), but quickly found myself overwhelmed with education and jobs. Because of this I went through a 7 year period of not drawing, not painting, not even thinking about art. It was only 2 years ago that I picked up my pencils again and decided to make a career out of my artwork. I now work as a freelance artist and couldn’t ask for a better job. Art, for me, is just like meditation, it relaxes and helps clear my head of any day to day stresses and I honestly couldn’t imagine a world without it. I mainly draw in chalk and charcoal but am starting to experiment with oil paints.”
Loved Krystan’s art? Follow her work on social media:
Right, in the previous article we made it clear that the horizon is directly connected to your eyes level. That means the higher you stand you will be able to see things from above and vice versa; you will be able to see things from below when you stand lower. How does this affect your drawings though?
The lines tend to vanish as they go closer to the horizon. You can imagine the horizon as a big linear hoover that sucks the lines of your drawings. EVERYTHING has to vanish into your horizon. And this applies even to the objects that are very close to yourself. Even these gradually vanish in to the horizon. Lines can be interrupted before they actually reach the horizon ie. the small carton box standing in front of you doesn’t need to reach your horizon line to vanish, however the extension of its lines will do reach.
Of course “vanishing into the horizon” is quite a vague phrase and everyone can interpret in various different ways. In reality perspective follows specific rules and the easiest way to understand it is by using the “vanishing points”. The vanishing points attract all lines of the drawing – this is where your lines actually vanish. A drawing can have 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 vanishing points. Working with 2 vanishing points is a good start for a beginner and once you master this you can easily start using 3 points.
Now lets grab some paper, a pencil and a rubber and start drawing in perspective. Move to the next article:
“The article above as well as the whole series of the Sketching Advice articles is an effort to put together my knowledge and offer it to fellow artists in their first steps in as simple words as possible . I am not a professional artist or tutor, however I have spent some time sketching and through trial and error I realised that following some basic principles can simplify sketching a lot. Feel free to ask any questions and I ll be glad to help if I can .”