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So, you don't think you can draw?

Discussion in 'Tips & Tricks!' started by OzAirbrush, Mar 17, 2012.


  1. OzAirbrush

    OzAirbrush Spider Splatterer

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    I once read a book "Drawing on the right side of the brain" by Betty Edwards, in it there is a fantasitc exercise that is very enlightening.
    This is good practice to get your "seeing" skill's for when laying out your guide drawing on your canvas or surface.

    Pick a subject to draw, not to detailed, and do your first sketch. Your drawing doesn't have to be a finished work, just make sure you layout out the geometry to get the overall picture, like you would when preparing a piece for painting say.

    Now, using the same image, turn it upside down and do the sketch again (upside down as you see it), once done compare it to your first and I think you will be very surprised.

    What is happening is when we look at things we say 'there's an eye' and although we see the eye we want to draw our brain fights this and we end up drawing an eye that is more like our own interpretation of an eye. That is, if we were asked to draw an eye from memory then copy an eye from reference there will most likely be more similarities to our own version than the reference.
    Because we turn the image upside down we can more easily see the 'shapes' we need to draw rather than an 'eye'.

    Anyway, give it a go and see what you think, I know I struggled when I first started the upside down sketch but I was getting more comfortable bby the end.
    Post up your sketches if you like and let us know what you learned or if you noticed any 'brain shifts' :)

    Cheers,
    Mick.
  2. Meth68

    Meth68 Young Tutorling

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    This sounds very interesting I wanna check out the book as well
  3. mika

    mika Young Tutorling

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    "Drawing on the right side of the brain" by Betty Edwards.. I have that book too.. like it a lot... good tip Oz ;)
  4. Fire Brush

    Fire Brush Young Tutorling

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    Absolutely one of the best art books for "rethinking" how you see your subject.
  5. IDMTmedic

    IDMTmedic Gravity Guru

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    Another tip I heard about on another forum was to put your drawing in a mirror and you will notice the flaws more easily.
  6. eenasha

    eenasha Elite Member! Elite Member!

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    I just tried that. It really works! I think that has to do with the same concept that ozairbrush was talking about. I would like to read that book.

    Sheena
  7. pcsmart01

    pcsmart01 Young Tutorling

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    Hi Mick,
    I have heard the same, I've also heard about people who never had artistic ability before some kind of brain injury. Also I have heard that some experiments have been conducted using a magnetic pulse on the brain which shuts of some of it's function but it improves the ability to draw.
    This leads me to believe that everyone has the ability, they just either don't realise it or try, aren't satisfied with their results and give up or someone else has told them they are no good and they choose to believe them.
    Cheers
    Phill
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  8. Madbrush

    Madbrush Guest

    A big problem with people in general (no insult here) is that they don't believe themselves or in their own ability, people will always second guess themselves and convince themselves that what do or try to do is not what it should be, people on this forum have been posting unbelievable works of art and in almost every case they think it isn't good, they feel as if they have to convince others of their ability and this makes them unsure, and like you said, if they get criticism they believe it, I am no exception to any of this.

    I don't think that everybody has the ability to create art, I KNOW IT, like Chuck Bauman said "if you can write your own name , you can draw", a totally true statement, drawing is exactly the same as writing your name, only difference is that all the lines and shapes you use go in other directions, a lot of people will grab a pencil or a brush and when what they do doesn't look like they wanted it to, they get frustrated and stop, but a few will understand immediately that they simply went about it the wrong way and set about looking for the solution, and that's difference.

    Everybody can teach themselves anything, but they have to want it, I play guitar, but I'm left handed, when I started I thought had a mountain to climb because I couldn't understand the chords, I first used a mirror but then for some strange reason, my brain took over and this was no longer necessary, now I only have to see it and brain will turn it around.

    There are two kinds of people, people who will give up and people who will not be beat, however if a person decides to give up, this tells me that it was most likely something they had little interest in the first place, that same person may excel themselves in another field, and usually they do.

    I believe that no one on this earth has ever failed, they simply chose the wrong method and the goal was not achieved as a result.

    In conclusion, using other parts of your brain is no myth, and this is something we can all teach ourselves, even if that requires in some cases guidance, it's no different t using another part of your body, like a lady I saw years ago creating beautiful paintings with her feet, my motto is if it can be and has been done, then I can do it too.

    I guess what I'm trying to say Phill is that you are 100% on the ball
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  9. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    I kept telling myself the same thing and it sort of morphed into 'dont tell me i can't'
    I'll tackle anything creatively but for some reason i've never had that confidence with drawing, Yes i can draw technical drawings, its easy with a ruler, its just a series of straight lines, and i never had any confidence in my drawing ability.... Until I joined this forum.

    So many people have said they cant draw but what they produce is jawdropping, and after reading all the threads, and tips and tricks I am now actually looking at things differently, i ask myself, how would I transpose 'that' to an airbush painting, and im 'breaking down' images, I cant promise its going to help create something worth looking at but i now have the confidence to at least give it a go and start tuning my brain.

    Never say never ! !
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  10. Madbrush

    Madbrush Guest

    That's exactly what I'm talking about, and when you tell them that, they think your just being nice, I've been accused many times of being too honest, and I don't disagree, so if I thought some thing was rubbish I would not hesitate to say it, I would much rather be honest and save someone for being further embarrassed than just be nice and let them look like fools.

    Only a complete fool would ever tell you, you can't, the trick is to convince yourself you can, I have had to teach young apprentices in the past how to paint (houses I mean) and I can't count how many times I heard "but I can't do that" I replied " you can't do that yet, and I can say with pride, most of these youngsters have all embarrassed me.

    If you think like you think now, the confidence will come with drawing, if you want that, your statement "never say never" is correct but more important, never say I can't and somehow I don't think you will.
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  11. Perseus

    Perseus Young Tutorling

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    I love "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain." I've read it 3 times now, and always find something I missed in the previous reads. I've loaned it to a friend of mine who claims he will never be able to draw, but I think he starting to see that that is not the case.
  12. ranhalen

    ranhalen Banned

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    i read it too its amazing how you can draw better after that, you should check my book out procastinating on the left side of the couch.:encouragement:
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  13. OzAirbrush

    OzAirbrush Spider Splatterer

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    Hi All,

    I watched a show on tv the other night on how your brain and your senses work (can't remember name right now, brain fog :) ) and there were some interesting experiments, one in particular (The McGurk effect) is where someone is making a 'baa' sound and when the image changes from a person whose mouth is making the 'baa' noise to someone's mouth making a 'faa' noise, we interpret the noise as the 'faa' even though it is still 'baa'.
    Pretty amazing what our perceptions can lead us to believe, it's the same with art, you ned to start to look at things as shapes of colour and tone, not objects, it's our perception of the object we look at that makes us draw what we 'think' we see, this is why the upside down trick works, it changes our perception.
    Try to look at things as if they are flat shapes (as in on paper), isolate the shape of a colour and see what it's true colour and shape is without the surrounding forms and shapes.

    Here's a link with the McGurk affect -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-lN8vWm3m0
    Cheers,
    Mick.
  14. RebelAir

    RebelAir Air-Valve Autobot!

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    I tried it but standing on my head and drawing at the same time was hard and it gave me a headache cause all the blood rushed to me head......Ohhhhh I read the OT wrong LOL, next time will turn the sketch ;)....

    Just joshing-Good tip Oz :)
  15. Perseus

    Perseus Young Tutorling

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    Hahahahaha. OMG ranhalen, I didn't know you wrote that. "Procrastinating On the Left Side of the Couch" is my second favorite book.

    Seriously though, if I don't stop laughing soon, I'm going to need medical attention.
  16. ranhalen

    ranhalen Banned

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    im lmao reading your quote bout lmao but have no fear i will save you. i also wrote. cpr for dummies, with a shop vac.
  17. Perseus

    Perseus Young Tutorling

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    OMG, you crack me up. LMAO.

    *Gasp, wheeze, gasp*

    'Nuf said.
  18. ad fez

    ad fez kind of a big deal = Admington

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    for inspiration and a "yes i can" attitude just go on you tube and type in armless guitar player balboa park. In-cray-ee-blay!!!!
  19. worldofglasscraft

    worldofglasscraft Elite Member! Elite Member!

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    That's Ranh spelling again, Ranh actually wrote
    "Procrastinating whilst scratching the left side of my crotch"
  20. ranhalen

    ranhalen Banned

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    im gonna get your book wolfen, "scratch and sniff" and your other one, "anal retentive friends, who are like cists growing on the left side of your brain," great books man, loved em, cant wait for your next one, buddy lol:encouragement:

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