|Cube figures allow me to focus on the basic shapes of the body.
This can lead to a better understanding of the body's form and
the creation of works that are incredibly natural, such as Lea
Colie Wight's drawing, Kate, conte on paper, 17 x 23.
I was always the kid who was great at multiplication tables and
terrible at thinking spatially, hence my dread of geometry in high school. (Sorry,
Ms. Newsome, you did your best!) But the one situation that has proven the
exception to my loathing is when using pencil drawings
of cubes to help me
figure out drawing the head and the body.
In fact, going a little cube happy is one of the best
exercises I've ever used to explore figure drawing because, first of all, it
abstracts the body for me so I'm not so worried about how weird looking the
shape of an arm is, or how off a torso is. Instead, I can focus on how
discovering how a head sits on a body and how a body, well, actually sits.
||Figure Study by Luca Cambiaso, 1527-85.
Putting the head and body in cube when doing a first round
pencil drawing unites the forms and allows an artist to use perspective of a "simple"
shape to understand how the forms work together. For example, when the head is
tilting upward, both the front and back of the head are affected by this
movement and lean up on the same tilt. And, if you think back to the cube, the
bottom and top of the head are positioned along the same angle as well. Then
you can mentally add and extend the perspective lines on the cube to further
comprehend how the forms recede into space. Once you've got this foundation in
place, you can begin to draw an actual pencil portrait or figure drawing with
Drawing methods like this are where an artist can always find
equilibrium and balance, because you know that if you have these, you are
starting from a strong place to begin any artwork. For additional pencil
drawing lessons and approaches that will give you the balance you may want, you
can now have an entire year's worth of Drawing
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