Figure Drawing tips series....starts today

Published on 2018-10-14

Hello all,

I've decided to post a series of tips, advice, tricks, etc about drawing the figure. I was digging into my backlog of art-professor-wisdom from early school days (weirdly, I got a fantastic art foundations education at this repressive Baptist-based university, long story short: I stuck around for the art basics and then transferred the hell outta there)....and also putting together other ideas that I only figured out recently (it does help to do something every week for a few years, guaranteed a few new realizations will trickle in :))) ....and figured I'd talk about hair first off, since that's one of my favorite things to draw:

First, override your temptation to start drawing every individual hair as a line. Pretend the hair is a helmet. Block it in with marker, with the side of your pencil, or ink and brush. Lines happen next, also a few waving hairs, if there's a breeze or so.

Then, think about the texture of the hair. Add lines to help create that illusion. Long thin strokes for smooth, short choppy ones, for stiff or curly.....and....I always have this fantasy that I could have a hairdo that looks like it's squeezed out from a can of whipping cream. Am I the only one??

Bonus tip: Side view, and good for short hairdos....paint or draw the shape of the skull first, then add the hair shape. This helps you see how the hair sits on the head, and ensures that you won't have strange flat areas that wouldn't be anatomically possible. If you are using paints, you can get that fun transluscent overlap effect.

Next time: Proportions! General rules and then how fun it is to break them, like if you are feeling rebellious and want to turn your live model into a cartoon on the page.