ART: THE BASICS: DRAWING
Code D9: (DVD ONLY)
This DVD contains 3 programs
Ever since the end of a burnt stick was used to mark the walls of caves, we have used drawing to portray and explain our environment. Good drawing is the basis of most art practices and good drawing requires good observation. The closer you observe an object the more details that are revealed.
The elements involved in creating a drawing are again the essentials of all art, composition, comparison, line and tone. Drawing is quick and inexpensive, so the results can be thrown away, if needed, and the ideas reworked. Drawings can be done on nearly any surface and you can go almost anywhere with a sketch book in your pocket.
They can also be plans for a later translation into other medium, such as oil on canvas, and in this way need to contain the mistakes, that can’t be made when working in the more expensive medium. Even in the modern digital age, artists can scan their drawings and rework and reform them before printing them out as a new image in a new medium.
Drawing will always be with us, it is the most convenient way of quickly getting down ideas and whichever medium you use, pencil or pen, charcoal or pastel, or maybe even paint, a drawing can be one road on a trip somewhere, or the destination itself.
The word pencil has been around for a very long time. It came from the Latin word ‘pencillus’, which means ‘little tail’ and described a long thin writing implement used during the time of the Romans. The pencil that we know today, with its graphite core and wooden surround, is a fairly new invention. They are now made by baking a mixture of graphite and clay together. Different proportions in the mix give the different pencils their varied harnesses.
For almost every artist, the pencil, in its modern form, has become essential tool. Using a pencil is a convenient and expressive way of working on preliminary sketches and compositions that progress into other medium later on. The mark made by the pencil can be very flexible and varied. It’s good for very general areas of shading as well as the finest of details. When working with pencils there are techniques used that are common to other art practises, such as cross-hatching and stippling, to give tonal variation and others which are not, such as using masks to erase areas.
The versatility of the pencil allows it to be used for fast, free-flowing drawing, as well as very detailed finished work.
Ink as a medium for drawing has been in use in many parts of the world for well over two thousand years. The ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans used pens made from reeds to write and draw on parchment and papyrus. The Romans also made pens out of bronze, some of which had nibs very similar to their modern day equivalent. Quills were being used in Europe in the seventh century AD, and they remained the most popular form of pen until the steel nib, called a point in North America, was invented in the early nineteenth century.
Many of the great masters drew with quill and ink. Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) filled countless notebooks with ink drawings and notes and Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-69) made rapid ink sketches as he developed the compositions for his oil paintings.
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