Charcoal Demo 2: Construct with Confidence Part 1

43 minutes
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Alright, everybody, let's move on to the next step in our process. You know, someone said, art is like having high standards, you've got to draw the line somewhere. Okay? So let's get started. Now in the last session, we talked about doing the 2d analysis of the simple shapes. Today we're going to be talking about constructing with confidence.

And so we're going to talk about kind of a process that looks like you see things in 3d. And we take it and we translate it into 2d. And then we buy through illusion and value and construction 2d shapes, we turn it back into 3d. So it's kind of a 3d to 2d to 3d process, you might find that helpful. So last time, we talked about analyzing the 2d shapes, right, and that's a tool you can use to get your foot inside the drawing and get it started. And if you do, basically a 2d analysis and you kind of get your values in, so you have your family of lights separated from your family darks.

And you copy that pattern really well, that's good. But it's not enough, it won't get you a finished drawing. So the next step is to basically use the planes and rhythms to start to go to the next level. So, you know, having a good copy is like, you know, being able to copy the Chinese alphabet, you can't speak the language. Right? Then all you can do is copy the alphabet, but you don't know what anything means.

So you can't say anything, and express yourself in a meaningful way. So now we're going to take the planes and the rhythms and start to pull 3d architecture out of it. We're going to start constructing, we're going to start sketching And we're going to basically try to describe the drawing better. We're looking for good descriptions, not fancy drawings. And when you start to put the plane changes in the form changes. You're asking yourself, you know, how can I take that 2d analysis and make it better?

You know, where can I take a hard plane change, a very soft form, hard born, you know, crisp edges, soft edges, where it turns, how can I bring that out in the drawing, so all those kind of descriptions. So that's what the planes and the rhythms are for. Okay, so that's what we're going to do now. And so let me start by taking a colored pencil like an orange and I'm using orange because it's dark enough to see on a light paper but light enough at the And it won't show up in the jolly. So the head is basically right and oval and I have to add the back of the head and it's drawing really light, always drawing lightly. I'm going to find the average angles just like we did last time.

Find the eyes in the center on average. And then I'll take where that front facing face would be. And I'll just add the difference onto the back and that would be a way to get me the back of the cranial mass. It's in the ballpark. Okay, the brow is here just above the eyes and from the brown of the chin That halfway point will be the nose. And halfway between the nose and the chin will be the mouth.

On average, the split of the lips basically. Okay, so far, so good. Try to keep it really simple. Then go from that bump on the cheek, the widest part of the face is usually the cheeks. And I can find the back of the skull, the widest part of the skull, right the widest part of this whole thing. kind of find that and then the height from let's say, here to here.

Now I can take that hairline and go one third to the brow, one third to the nose. One third to the chin, I can go that way too. So I can go halves I can go thirds, just whatever gets me there. So let's put the ear and plug it to get that angle up the jaw. Simplify that lower part of the job to the chin box. I've got a rhythm right there, of the chin.

I know that barrel mouth is going to bulge out it's not going to be on that flat plane of the face, it's coming out. So I'm going to draw a contour over that. Right and I can even build that barrel up. If I need to, to make it. Make the point. Make it clear.

See a polar rhythm here. This rhythm dividing the side of the head from basically the front of the head. If I continue it all the way down, hits some really important landmarks. That corner of the brow hits the corner of the cheekbone, and then divides the front of the job from the back of the jaw, basically that Mr. Chewing muscle and then I can line up the brow and the nose. Right just with some horizontal guidelines and get that ear that will be in the third, that middle third, somewhere in here. And that'll be the year can be one third of that upper ear.

The middle. Part of the third is the content or opening of the year and then The lobe. Okay. So let's see if we can get these rhythms going here. A lot alternate between holding the pencil like this with an open palm inside the palm and then a palm down. Kind of a finger grip.

Let's build the sockets or the eyes. I think that's, again, trying to stay in My process going general to specific big to small. My first move was divide divide the side of the head from the front of the head. Look for average angles for relationships. Now that eyeball is gonna sit in there let's get the Kabbalah in here. fancy name for the brow ridge over that and the Keystone Okay, I'm gonna pull a rhythm from the helix that defines the side of the head and the top of the cheek.

And then it goes all the way over the muzzle of the mouth and then kind of turns into the defines the end of the lips. They're the most narrow part of the terminus of the lips. I can draw that plumb line from the iris down to define on either side, where the lips are going to end where the chin fits in to the jaw, all that good stuff. So I got that I can imagine on the other side where that's going to be and there's another one coming off the helix too, and that goes around to the middle of the jaw separating on the side of the jaw, the front part from the back part. And then we've got the rhythm of the mouth. Basically it goes from the wings to the nose to the edges of the mouth.

Intrude on the rhythm of the chin just a little bit, and then the rhythm of the chin comes out. So they intersect the rhythm of the chin and the rhythm of the mouth. That shows that barrel like nature of the mouth protruding from the face. cheek coming behind. Okay. So there we've got some dimension, the cheek going behind barrel in front.

You can see that by that little letter Y right there. The y and the T principle, another letter Y here and that shows overlap overlap. There's a great communicates, dimensions dimension really well. Okay, and then we have another rhythm here, that's the kind of the nasal labial fold here. And that's also going to help me hold that chin where it connects to the job. All correct gives it a place to end up and around behind the rhythm of the mouth.

Okay, so there we are. I'm just going to draw the plane change of the nose from side to under, I'm not going to draw the nostril just yet. if I can help it the plane changes enough. It's better description at this moment. And then we've got the rhythm of the notes. So that's there too.

Now we've got everything really defined pretty well. It's like a road map, you know, cheek interlocks with that. tempo on the side. Can't see where that hairline is something like that. And then we've got a plane change right from the frontal eminence here, which is that's got a rhythm of the forehead that comes out fits into the brow. Again we have that labella which is really kind of the nose fitting into the forehead.

We can define that it's pretty subtle on this guy so I won't go super far with it. But if you want your cone and like low rock kind of characters, put that glabella in there really define it and you'll give fierce looking person. Okay. And there are there's rhythm that comes down We have the front plane, side plane and then true side of the head. So front, step down, side, step down again to the actual really turns a corner here and goes into the side of the head. I'm just gonna define that.

I'm going to describe that. Let's give him a little bit of a, gotta have a neck. It's gotta have a connection. sent to the underside of the chin here. Can't see what's going on here. Coat wrapping around.

Ty. I don't really care about that too much. Just a design, right? Where am I gonna finish this off? It'd be nice, triangular shape is good. Make sure where things connect.

Make sure they overlap, make sure they fit together well. And that'll be convincing. Okay, so let's just take a step back and look. See how we're doing. We have a nice dimple here in the chin. Okay, so I'm gonna go ahead and just knock This back just a little bit with my kneaded rubber eraser such a great tool.

Just ghosting it back. Okay. So I got a little sheet off to the side here that I can kind of shape my, my tools. So I'm going to squint down and look for my dark is dark and lightest light and just, instead of jumping in, I'm just gonna, you know, try to go slow and I'm using A piece of Bristol Actually, it's a piece of charcoal paper because the fine charcoal works better because it has a tooth. And vine charcoal doesn't work that well on newsprint so it won't take it wipes away too so easily and so it needs a little bit more of a rougher texture. I'm just using the side of the little piece of buying charcoal squinting down and just looking for darks and lights, patterns, shapes He's backlit too.

He's got a rim light off camera left. So that's why the side of his cheek and neck is lit up. And then he's got that key light from screen right sideburn behind his ear Okay, again just squinting looking for the flat 2d shapes, doing my 2d analysis I love the way that fine charcoal goes on. It's just so something about it so smooth and silky. Just gets lost right there To be real kind of a bit bold about it because it's that fine charcoal it can I can. very forgiving I can just wipe it away.

Let's see here. Let's just kind of build this eye socket. Let's go ahead and don't be afraid to dig in here or it goes into shadow. If I was sculpting I have to remove clay right so just thinking the dark shapes that I make the dark marks is like pushing in to the paper. Going into shadow. And this is where my rhythms come in really handy.

I can just go ahead and be a little bit more confident and I can construct with that confidence. The marks that I make because I've got those rhythms in there. Just put a tone here to push that side back and get the other I go in here For the shape, Shadow the upper lip, I mean upper lip, the upper the upper eyelid and then he doesn't have very dark eyebrows. It's just almost the color of the skin. That's really dark hair in the background. That is that dark holes light principle leaves a lot of dust this stuff but just blows off.

Right so let's squint again and just see the simple shapes and looking For triangles, circles squares with the graphic shapes that simplify stuff, as I see kind of a semi circle under the nose, or cast a shadow into the upper lip, I'm gonna keep it just like a circle. I can put the bumps in later to find that edge. And there's something I'm noticing here about the, the light as well. It falls off, hit some on the forehead that's closest to the light and then it just falls off. There's a gradual gradation that gets just a little bit darker underplaying to the nose just put it in. So this process that we're doing, analyzing the 2d shapes, and then turning those 2d shapes into 3d architecture, by introducing rhythms and planes.

It's it's like telling a story as we're describing. You can see elements of story in this process, right? Because I'm going to realize this face, I'm going to describe it to you. I'm telling you a story through my drawing. The drawing itself is a story. And stories everywhere, right?

It's like, I can somewhat improvise off of this. I can't just leap into improvisation, right into chaos, because then you probably couldn't follow me and I wouldn't be able to keep it together. So I need a base to come from. It's like the classic hero's journey, the hero leaves home, goes out into chaos, confronts the dragon slays the dragon and then brings back the information to, to the people at home so their lives can be better. And so you need that structure your structure. Home is your structure.

It's your identity, your traditions, your culture, your language, your God. And then you launch out into the world right and explore, and you try to make order habitable order out of chaos and return to home again. That's what happens in music, you improvise off a structure. If the jazz quartet just launched off into a huge, atonal solo, the audience wouldn't be able to follow them. So you first give them something recognizable. And then you slowly build out from there.

That way when you go back home is so much more sweeter to the audience because they recognize it. recognition is huge. And it brings that that feeling of tension and release. When you go out and come back, you go out it's tension, you come back, it's release. Right? You go back to the source is comfort and homey.

So, you know, using structures, okay? In fact, it's more than, okay. Right? It's preferred, because then I can take some some chances on this thing. And that's, that's the fun of it. Right?

Because it's that tension. You know, it could, it could all it could all go wrong. Okay, but I'm hoping it's gonna stay together. Right? And that's why we, we do this stuff because it's so, so fun to be in on that journey right to see if our skills are, are there to see where we need work to see where we can come back victorious with what we have, you know? And that is meaning.

Story isn't meaning. I don't know if you agree with that. What do you think? I'd love to know your thoughts. Now when we leave home and go out into Is that chaos, chaos of the drawing, right? The chaos of the music, the chaos of life.

Things can go again they can go kind of haywire and that's called the Valley of the suck. I got that from Ryan Kingsland great teacher and mentor. And he pointed that out that in the middle, things just get looking bad things get chaotic. And you don't feel like you can make it through. You feel like it's all come apart. And that's gonna be the end of you.

The end of your trolling. Right? It's just that feeling like oh my God, this sucks and I don't know what to do. If you find yourself in the valley of this Suck, right? You've got to make a decision. Do I go home?

And start again? Or do I keep pushing through? Right? That's part of that tension. He didn't make it through. And so most of the time in the middle, it gets sucky looking.

And then the question comes up, and it'll hit hardest. Can I even really do this? Right? You feel like an imposter or something. And you'll be challenged, those questions will come up, you'll be challenged and you just got to push through it larger where it's like one of the one of the enemies of the creative process is that that boy Those voices that tell you you suck. You can't do this.

And they're real. Who knows where they come from? They might come from old tapes, family upbringing, parents, whatever. Something somebody said to us. Or it's just, that's the nature of reality itself. You know, you go out and do something new and just fear sets in or the voices come up because they want to be in comfort.

You want to be at the comfort zone. Not out here in the chaos where it's risky. And you don't know what's gonna happen. You might meet the dragon and the dragons not friendly. You don't know that right? got this little edge here, the chin going into the underside of the chip and it gets kind of it's kind of a half tone right I think I'm gonna put in there needs to be pushed a little bit just gently applying things the hard edge right there.

Okay, let's keep concentrating here. Sometimes my eyes can get a little off and not lined up if I'm not careful. That's one thing that happens to me. That's why the rhythms and planes are so good because from side to side because the head is the same, split down the middle. The rhythms really help balance that out and keep the symmetry Fingers a cheap, cheap paintbrush. Okay, so let's go ahead and you know there's this idea that you have a sphere, the light is coming from top right.

So you have a highlight and core shadow. So you just draw the silhouette of the shape. Then you draw the boundary between the light and dark. Then you get the darks The value right so that place closest to the light gets the highlight. Then it gets a little bit lighter and has the cast shadow but that light falls off the farther the object gets away, falls off quickly. So it's lighter up top and it kind of gets darker as it goes away.

So I'm gonna use that simple idea. Try to squint my eyes and I see a kind of a gradation here. It's a little bit darker here, lighter here. Okay. Try to unify things as much as I can. unify the darks, unify the lights.

That's good. The unified theory of physics right? Try to find one theory that explains everything. If it's possible Get into squinting at the model squint at my drawing. Of course, this model is a photo. But the principle applies even so, just to squint and compare squint and compare.

Plant changes side of the nose from the front plane of the nose. labella steps down becomes kind of an under plane so it gets a tone If I want you to look at the eyes, then I'll want to put the contrast there. Okay, so let's just take a step back and see what's going on. Just squint down, catch the top of the head there, lose the line and then bring it back. Lost and Found. Love that something here so Again, I'm showing on the outside as well, negative space positive space.

You can see the, in the background there's that bokeh. Right. So I could, I could put some in just to suggest the background there. Okay, so now, phase two, I'm going to switch over to pencil. case of biggest contrast is in the eyes to me. Let's see if we can kind of do that.

But I want to have just a little bit of chocolate charcoal on the side so I can get these subtleties in here. People say don't finger pain, put your fingers on the paper but because the oils will get in there that mixed with the pigment, whatever you're using the medium and then it looks dirty and it's hard to clean. But I had a like finger painting a lot. It's a tool, why not use it? Okay, let's define some things we've been doing. out here.

Let's see if we can do. And I see the eyes and the nose have the most amount of contrast. So let's just observe that and then put it in there. make some decisions here. Make some commitments, scope some things out, eventually you got to commit, right? So we've been in that kind of blocking phase where we're using the vine charcoal, it's easy to amend it, change it.

It's very flexible, right? Very plastic. And so that's fun. We're kind of using that innovating off the structure of the rhythms. And then we got to kind of tighten down before we have too much chaos, right? We need some order.

So that's okay. I cannot see inside that shadow so maybe I'll just kind of just leave it alone. kind of put maybe where that tightline at all our facial groove right there with a wing of the nose meets the cheek. I know that's gonna be like an occlusion shadow. It's gonna be dark in there. All right, I'm going to take the rest of this process offline to do the finishing work.

And then in the next video, we'll come back and discuss how I finished it, the tools that I used, and a bunch of details like that, all right, okay, we'll see you in the next one.

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