Angry me


I tried to draw a self portrait. My sister did not recognise me from it. On the other hand, my children said it looks just like me. Maybe my children are more used to seeing me angry… It is surprisingly difficult to draw and watch the mirror at the same time.

Now I understand why famous painters so often painted self portraits. Your own face is always there to use. And you can do anything with it without the “customer” getting angry.  Plus of course it teaches you a lot.

What about faces


I am sorry about the quality of the photo. The light was not good – in fact it was very poor.
After drawing live model we started to learn faces. There are some rules to that, too. After some theory we used the first face lesson by drawing one minute croquis of faces. Difficult, but not as difficult as I feared.

There are some tules to drawing faces, too. I find it extremely helpful. Eyes are in the middle of the head. The ear reaches from eye level to the mouth level and so on. Of course there are individual differences, but the rules help you to start the drawing. After that you may try to do the likeness.

Soft pastels


I found something that suits me. Soft pastels. Did not know they even existed! We have of course used oil pastels at school when I was young, but they always seemed to be awkward and unsatisfying. Or maybe I just did not get the hang of them. At Art School for Adults (2. year) we have been drawing live model – this time with soft pastels. Yes! I like it!

Try different media, different instruments. Some of them might just be the thing for you. Don’t say “Nah, it is not for me” before you have tried. I certainly fell in love with soft pastels.

It does not have to be black and white


After drawing a lot of models with tiny feet I finally made the lower half big enough. Or too big. Partly this is because I took my photo of this drawing from an awkward angle. Her bottom and legs are really not that big even in my drawing.

It is very interesting to use different charcoals, pastels, pencils etc to draw. Every instrument seems to give something new to the drawing. 

Finding the light


We are still drawing the live model. This time we had to concentrate on lights and shadows. Somehow this always seems to help me. Why do I not remember it if not told to? I am quite happy with this 20 minutes croquis, at least the white parts. Feet are still tiny – I could not fit them on the paper otherwise.

Concentrating on the lights and shadows of the object helps. It liberates you from trying to draw a likeness and helps you to draw what you see. 

Drawing live model


Drawing people is fascinating. It absorbs you so wholly that the minutes and hours tick by without noticing and suddenly the lesson is over. This time it was 10 minutes croquis we made – using charcoal as you maybe notice.

It helps to draw some guiding lines to get the position right.
You can see one of the lines in this drawing.

Here we go!


Three minute croquis… the two drawings on the right are awful, but the others have a slight resemblance to the live model, at least the pose is about right. Though of course she did not have such tiny feet!

It is true that there are some laws to drawing people. The body length is about 6 1/2 head lengths. Arms and hands reach approximately the thigh. Arms are about two head lengths and legs about three and so on. What a relief that you do not have to rely solely on your eye, but have these rules to follow. It makes things a lot easier!