V03 photorealistic dagger

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V03 photorealistic dagger

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  • 1. PHOTOREALISTIC Brenda Hoddinott V-03 ADVANCED: NATURE AND STILL LIFE In this project featuring a detailed drawing of a dagger rendered from a photograph, artists use contrasting values to identify its forms, textures and patterns according to the lights and darks created by the dominant light source. This lesson is divided into the following three sections: BEFORE THE DRAWING BEGINS: I briefly discuss the processes of taking reference photos, and choosing a composition. FROM PHOTO TO DRAWING PAPER: The goal of the initial sketch is to put the dagger on the paper proportionately correct. You stretch your visual skills as you follow along with drawings that illustrate each important stage. SHADE IN THE BLADE AND GUARD: From this perspective, the blade is farther away from the viewer than the handle. Hence, the shading of the blade needs less contrast in values than the handle, which is the focal point. The handle sections are drawn with more intricate details than the blade. ADD THE PATTERN AND SHINY TEXTURE TO THE GRIP: You create a shiny texture and an intricate pattern with a full range of values, by progressively layering medium and dark hatching and/or crosshatching over some sections of lighter values. ADD SHINE TO THE POMMEL: You complete the drawing by shading the end of the handle. Light values are added before the medium and dark. You need 2H (light values), HB (middle values), and 2B (dark values) mechanical pencils, good quality drawing paper, and erasers. If you plan to use regular wood pencils instead of mechanical, you also need a pencil sharpener and a sandpaper block. This lesson is recommended for artists with a lot of patience and/or strong drawing skills, as well as home schooling, academic and recreational fine art educators of advanced students. 11 PAGES 23 ILLUSTRATIONS Published by Hoddinott Fine Art Publishers, Halifax, NS, Canada - 2006

2. Copyright to all articles, images, text, projects, lessons and exercises within this drawing class belong to Brenda Hoddinott and may not be reproduced or used for any commercial purposes whatsoever without the written permission of Brenda Hoddinott. E-mail bhoddinott@hoddinott.com Web sites http://www.finearteducation.com and http://www.drawspace.com 2 BEFORE THE DRAWING BEGINS In this section, I briefly discuss the process of taking reference photos, choosing a composition, and enhancing the primary photo in Adobe Photoshop. To take a photo of the dagger, I first placed it on a flat surface in front of a brightly lit window. I took several photos from various angles, and downloaded them to my computer. After examining them closely, I finally settled on this one. However, I wasnt thrilled with the idea of drawing the dagger from this angle, so I rotated the photo in Adobe Photoshop until I was happy with the composition. I also changed the image to black and white instead of color, so the individual values were easier to distinguish. I then digitally erased the background and enhanced the contrast, to make the pattern on the handle stand out more. Using photos as references is rarely as reliable as drawing from actual objects. However, if you have no choice, make sure you take lots and lots of photos from every conceivable angle. Also, take numerous close- ups of the more intricate parts of your subject, so you wont be left guessing which parts connect to what and how! As an aside, my fascination with medieval history motivated a friend to give me this wonderful replica of an old dagger. Ever since I removed the gift wrap, Ive wanted to try to capture its fascinating forms, textures and pattern in a drawing. 3. Copyright to all articles, images, text, projects, lessons and exercises within this drawing class belong to Brenda Hoddinott and may not be reproduced or used for any commercial purposes whatsoever without the written permission of Brenda Hoddinott. E-mail bhoddinott@hoddinott.com Web sites http://www.finearteducation.com and http://www.drawspace.com 3 FROM PHOTO TO DRAWING PAPER Set up your drawing supplies, make sure you have good lighting, and get comfortable. In this lesson you need to stretch your visual skills to their limit, and follow along with drawings that illustrate each important stage. However, just so you dont feel totally abandoned, I do offer a few tidbits of information and suggestions along the way. The goal of the initial sketch is to put the dagger on the paper proportionately correct. The lines need to be sketched so faintly that you can barely see them. When you are happy with your sketch, begin adding more details and refining the outlines of the various parts of the dagger (refer to the drawings on the next page). Remember to keep the outlines very light so they will eventually blend into the shading. 4. Copyright to all articles, images, text, projects, lessons and exercises within this drawing class belong to Brenda Hoddinott and may not be reproduced or used for any commercial purposes whatsoever without the written permission of Brenda Hoddinott. E-mail bhoddinott@hoddinott.com Web sites http://www.finearteducation.com and http://www.drawspace.com 4 The guard section of the handle of a dagger (also called a hand- guard) is the section between the handle grip and the blade, and is designed to prevent the hand from slipping toward the blade. The grip is the cylindrical section that is held to safely control the dagger. The pommel is on the end of the handle and is often distinctively shaped, giving the dagger its charm and status. SHADE IN THE BLADE AND GUARD From this perspective, the blade is farther away from the viewer than the handle. Hence, the shading of the blade needs less contrast in values than the handle, which is the focal point. The guard is drawn with more intricate details than the blade. 5. Copyright to all articles, images, text, projects, lessons and exercises within this drawing class belong to Brenda Hoddinott and may not be reproduced or used for any commercial purposes whatsoever without the written permission of Brenda Hoddinott. E-mail bhoddinott@hoddinott.com Web sites http://www.finearteducation.com and http://www.drawspace.com 5 A 2H pencil and hatching lines work well to add light values to the blade. Light values are added along the edges of the triangular-shaped form of the blade to enhance the illusion of three dimensions. A highlight, on the section of the blade close to the guard, is left white. Hatching lines become crosshatching and the texture of the blade becomes smoother. In preparation for adding shading to the hand guard section of the handle, a shading map is lightly sketched, based on the different values I see in the reference photo. 6. Copyright to all articles, images, text, projects, lessons and exercises within this drawing class belong to Brenda Hoddinott and may not be reproduced or used for any commercial purposes whatsoever without the written permission of Brenda Hoddinott. E-mail bhoddinott@hoddinott.com Web sites http://www.finearteducation.com and http://www.drawspace.com 6 The process of adding values to the hand guard is demonstrated in the following three drawings. 2H (light values), HB (middle values), and 2B (dark values) mechanical pencils are sequentially layered to create a full range of values. I also vary the density of the shading lines and the pressure used in holding the pencils. The shading process focuses on values and forms rather than lines and shapes. Very few lines separate (or outline) the many different parts of the dagger, in either the reference photo or the drawing. Rather, contrasting values help define the edges of the hand guard to visually separate it from the blade. 7. Copyright to all articles, images, text, projects, lessons and exercises within this drawing class belong to Brenda Hoddinott and may not be reproduced or used for any commercial purposes whatsoever without the written permission of Brenda Hoddinott. E-mail bhoddinott@hoddinott.com Web sites http://www.finearteducation.com and http://www.drawspace.com 7 ADD THE PATTERN AND SHINY TEXTURE TO THE GRIP The hatching lines run along the contours of each individual form of the grip. You create medium values by layering hatching or crosshatching lines over some sections of light values. Make sure you leave lots of light values close to the highlights on the grip. The cast shadow and the pattern on the grip are shaded with an HB pencil. As you work, continuously go back over your drawing and adjust the values. To make a section lighter, pat the shading lines gently with a kneaded eraser that is molded to a point. To make a section darker, simply add more shading lines and/or use a darker pencil. 8. Copyright to all articles, images, text, projects, lessons and exercises within this drawing class belong to Brenda Hoddinott and may not be reproduced or used for any commercial purposes whatsoever without the written permission of Brenda Hoddinott. E-mail bhoddinott@hoddinott.com Web sites http://www.finearteducation.com and http://www.drawspace.com 8 If you are using regular pencils, make sure you sharpen the point of the pencil with a sharpener and/or sandpaper block after each tiny section of shading is added. The outline of the shape of the cast shadow is very similar to that of the upper edge of the handle. Light and medium values are added to the cast shadow with crosshatching. As you work, focus on the broad range of values that exists in between the darks and lights. Very light and very dark values are fairly easy to achieve. The real challenge is creating graduations of medium values. 9. Copyright to all articles, images, text, projects, lessons and exercises within this drawing class belong to Brenda Hoddinott and may not be reproduced or used for any commercial purposes whatsoever without the written permission of Brenda Hoddinott. E-mail bhoddinott@hoddinott.com Web sites http://www.finearteducation.com and http://www