In addition to Dianne Mize’s video lesson 4 Steps to Skillful Drawing, I purchased her lesson Understanding Shadows. My goal is to get much more adept at locating the areas of a subject that are in shadow. This lesson did a pretty good job of providing direction there, but an even better job at explaining the parts of areas in shadow. I’ve seen the sphere drawing a million times (and even did a value shading exercise of it) but it’s different when you put it into practice on a different subject.
The way she walks through the elements of shadow and how to think about the values present in shadow is excellent, and I definitely have a deeper comprehension of how to approach shading those areas. Her method for looking at shadow areas as deep, moderate, shallow, and core give a good framework for keeping things relative to each other. It’s like defining the extreme ends of shadow shapes and then filling them in according to what you’re seeing.
|Graphite drawing based on this reference image|
By understanding the parts of shadows better, it’s easier to hit those dark areas more accurately and give the drawing a more realistic sense. I drew this little piggy using what I learned from both lessons and even though it took me awhile, I’m really pleased with how it turned out. Although I do think the shadow value wash is too dark, making a really abrupt transition into light. Using a harder lead might have helped with controlling that.