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Drawing Background for Figurine: Part 1

February 14, 2012

Okay, enough of this sulking. It’s time to get back on the Art-making train. While digging through recent work for some art submissions, I found this drawing I had set aside about a year ago. It was a drawing of an 18th century figurine sculpture with only the figure drawn. Now is as good a time as any to get that background area wrapped up.

I knew that I wanted a dense shrubbery, but needed some reference material to go by, so I took a walk through a nearby apartment complex that had some nice greenery in their courtyard. I took a few photos of some different shrubs that I thought might work for me, some of which you can see above.

Using a hard lead 5H graphite pencil, I started laying in the background. I wanted to get a soft light tone to set down the first pass of grey, feeling out the shapes of leaves and branches.

After getting the first quadrant of the background set, I stopped and went back over it with a slightly darker (HB) tone. I’m gradually making more defined shapes and forms in this manner. I’ll likley pull back the lighter areas some too as I get the whole thing covered, but I’m liking how it’s coming together at this point and don’t want to get too far ahead of myself too soon.

This method of drawing is something akin to sculpture, fittingly. I’m roughly laying down one shade and then shaping everything up in separate passes, leaving some areas rough, some more defined. Well, that’s the plan anyway.

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