Figure Drawing Class in Lillstreet Art Center

So far, I’ve had four figure-drawing lessons in Lillstreet and I enjoyed every single moment of it though I only signed up for this class cos the original class I wanted was cancelled. I like that each 3-hour lesson is very packed ( maybe it is just my kiasu Singaporean trait at play – very packed means value for money haha) . Not only did we learn new skills each week, we also got to see the teacher Bob Horn demonstrate a few times per lesson. I am someone who firmly believes in building strong foundational skills, and I can tell that Bob is really knowledgeable about drawing human figures.In fact, he spends quite a bit of time teaching us about anatomy, bone structure, muscles etc because understanding all these are integral to drawing figures well.

Usually each lesson starts with the model doing a few quick poses for us to do rough sketches as part of warm-up exercise. Then Bob will teach us a new skill, for example a step by step guide to drawing a hand, and he will demonstrate what he means by drawing on the spot. We then try to emulate what he did in our following drawings.

sketching

This is an example of the quick sketches we do at the start of each lesson. We are only given about 1 minute for each pose. This is supposed to train our observation skills: drawing without having time to think. The above picture was sketched during my second lesson, which I thought looked pretty decent. Unfortunately, my skills went downhill from there and the following sketches just looks grossly disproportionate:( I really need to practise more -_- Always so ill-disciplined at home.

Other than figure drawing sessions, we were also allocated about 1 hour per lesson on portrait drawing. I have to say, drawing portrait is extremely hard! So hard that I think it makes more sense to take a photograph. To me, the whole point of drawing a portrait is to ensure that it has a strong resemblance to how the person really looks like. If it looks nothing like the person then there is no point even if you might have done a good job in shading and blending etc.

portrait

This is a portrait I did which fortunately looks like a human being, but which unfortunately looks absolutely nothing like how the person looks like in real life. HAHA. On a positive side, all my classmates’ versions look nothing like how the model looks like either LOL.

nudity2

nude4

From the third lesson onwards, we were taught to use conte crayons to try to create tonal differences. Until now, I can’t get the conte crayons to work properly. Somehow I always feel that the colours cannot come out smoothly, but if I were to colour it harder, it will get too dark.Anyway, I didn’t even get to finish the drawings each time cos we were only allocated at most 30 minutes for each drawing and I am a slow drawer.

All in all, I find Lillstreet’s figure drawing class quite well-structured, with enough foundational skills taught, but sufficient time for you to practise what you learnt. We will be allocated 3 hours for just one picture next week. Hopefully my portrait can have a 20% resemblance to the actual model, 要求不高。

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About Chasing Carefree

I am a Singaporean Chinese who moved to Chicago in 2015. I hope to chronicle my daily life, rants, travels and observations of the American culture on this blog.
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