Tonight I want to take a look back on my progress since my first time attending life drawing here in Portland. Before we moved I had take a long hiatus from figure drawing in an open studio and my skills suffered because of it. Even though I complain every time I put charcoal to paper, I may be very surprised at my progress.
I will be pulling images from my first post about Hipbone Studio here and attempt a comparative of imagery considering the structure of the life drawing studio stays the same the comparison should be fairly accurate.
My warmup pages were started well after first attending life drawing in Portland so I have no comparison for this.
I will complain as always that I need to get better at gesture drawing, but if you look at the gesture drawings below I can definitely see that I’ve improve in 5 months.
I see a lot of improvement here. I can really see an improvement in accuracy and quality of line from the drawing below.
Above are two 15 minute poses from today’s life drawing open studio and below are two 15 minute poses from 5 months ago. It seems like the longer the time spent on the drawings, the more I see improvement in both accuracy and line quality. Now, I’m still very unhappy with the second 15 minute drawing from today, but I feel much better about it now that I have seen my progression.
I always feel like I draw so slow. But looking at the drawing below I feel like I accomplished a better drawing today in 15 minutes than I did with 30 minutes 5 months ago. There is not much comparison between these two 30 minute poses though, the one from today is far superior.
Well at least when I did the drawing below I attempted it 3 times in 30 minutes. You could tell that I was working hard to get it correct.
Today I let go a bit on this last drawing. I usually focus on line and stay away from value because I feel like I can cover up a lot of mistakes with some well placed value and this doesn’t help me to become a better artists. But, for this last drawing I let fly with the value and had a bit of fun, while at the same time trying to stay as accurate as possible.
Comparing this with the drawing below from 5 months ago I may not be as hard on myself. It’s strange, I never feel like I’m progressing in artistic skill and I constantly complain about my work, but looking back at my improvement give me even more motivation to work that much harder moving forward.
If anyone ever asks me why I blog ALL my work, this is it. How would I know how far I have come in only 5 months if I just threw away all my old drawings.
4 thoughts on “Life Drawing: A Look Back on My Progress”
I like the drawings, Chris 🙂
Thank you Mildred!
Okay, either we’ve been hanging out together too much, or I’ve been reading your blog too much, but I swear, a few years ago, I wouldn’t have been able to tell the difference between any of those drawings, but now I can really see some stark improvements in your current work.
When I wrote the 1000 days of art post for my blog, I was going through all your paintings on this site and I was musing at how much you have improved on this as well.
One thing I haven’t seen much from you in quite some time is landscapes. I know, I know, it’s fall/winter in the Pacific Northwest, which means it’s raining nearly all the time and gets dark super early, but I’d like to see some of those works compared to those you did when we were living at 130th and our vacation to Alaska.
Have you taken a look at some of your still lifes from when you started to this summer? It’s impressive.
Thanks for sharing this.
Funny you should say that about the landscapes, I was planning on making an effort to work on landscapes every Sunday. And maybe the next time I post a still life I will do a look back on still life improvement.