>What is the point of life-drawing when you can do construction?
>What is the point of construction when you can do life-drawing?
When painting a still life, should I worry about shapes and proportions (think the Picasso drawing exercise in Betty Edwards' book) or interpreting what I have in front of my eyes and construct it with my knowledge of perspective and rendering?
I do the later but want to get into traditional media portraiture and absolutely everybody swears by life-drawing as the answer as if it was the key to gettin gud, but for me it feels akward and I feel like it won't have a long-term impact in my progress.
>I thought that I didn't need to take a class because I have books.
sounds like you're the expert here, champ. just do what you """think""" you should do, seein as that's what you're gonna do anyhow
Life drawing and construction go hand by hand. You apply construction to life drawing and the other way around.
Both are essential, cause with lifedrawing you see the little details and such. And with construction, you actually build the form and actually understand how it works.
Dont think of them as seperate things as they are both important part of drawing
Most people I know who learn everything from books and don't do observation from life end up having their work feel as flat as the fucking page. You can't even say they lack a sense of how the body fits into space because there is no feeling of space in their work at all. It's usually marked by a drawing which flattens out around the arms and legs, like a shoulder coming out at 45 degrees and an arm parallel to ground level. There's no twist to the body or foreshortening beyond maybe the forearm covering the bicep if they halfway have a fucking clue. If you draw from life you've at least got a chance to not feel like you're creating paper thin people.
If you do all life with no construction, good luck ever taking what you learn from life and applying it elsewhere. These sorta people never study anatomy, perspective, anything other than just copying what they see. At least they usually have a good eye for composition.
I'm pretty sure life drawings =/= still lifes. Construction is the building blocks: putting together Lego's and doll parts. Life drawing is the end result, Lego sculptures already fitted into place for you. If you only draw from life you'll never figure out how to make your own creations, and if you draw only from flat and still images you won't instill into your brain how the pieces fit together in more complex ways (and possibly run into the uncanny valley).
OP, I think you're confusing proper life-drawing for sight-size-replication ala bargue studies, real life drawing requires thinking about things in 3D space and actually trains construction as well as seeing gesture, developing an eye for character and generally just building up a library of what things actually look like which helps with solving problems when drawing from imagination.
if you had to chose, op, life drawing is more important, because spending hundreds of hours in front of models will instil a lot of knowledge of anatomy and structure and surface.
Construction, otoh, by its nature will not teach you much about the diversity of human forms. One thing I've learned from drawing a lot of people is how often their shapes are twisted and weird. It's kinda great.
Luckily we can (and should) do both life drawing and construction.
Do both. Specialize in the one that promotes whatever you're doing.
Personally, I'm very interested in alla prima atelier methods and plein air--clearly more beneficial for me to really know how to paint what I'm looking at, etc.
quite simply, a lot, you'd have to draw the same thing ten times from different refs to gain what you would doing it once from life, I know it's hard, I used to walk out with my sketchbook and pen in bag ready to draw then pussy out and come straight back home but you just gotta do it man
Yeah, I'm confused now. The way I currently see it is that drawing from life and not photo is like looking at thousands of photos at once. You see all the little details moving slightly and revealing themselves. It's like reference on crack. A photo is just pixels. A frozen shot. It's already flattened. Though, a real object is something you sense differently while you draw it because it's actually taking up space in front of you. But that's just my opinion. I don't know.
You're supposed to close one eye and keep it and your head stable in real life so you can see only two dimensions, silly. Also your model should be still. Nothing should be revealed because nothing is moving. Do you even life draw?
Do you think in the meantime drawing objects from life could help develop a greater sense of general form or is the advantage of life drawing more pronounced in the figure and development of ability to draw the figure from imagination?
>Picasso drawing exercise in Betty Edwards
you have to do both, first things first, copy proportions and shapes, then construct it over that correct underdrawing, and draw forms there, if you don't and you start focusing on construction since the start you're gonna make mistakes and you won't be able to fix them later
Life drawing and construction compliment one another. When someone tells you that one is more important than the other they're either lying or wrong. Construction helps you understand the 3d form of the 2d image your eye sees. This knowledge influences your line-work and shading when life drawing. IF you didn't know anything about construction, nothing about how the human body looks you could still do a perfect drawing from life, however it would probably take you hours and hours where as you could do something as accurate in half the time if know the fundamentals of how the form works and how light is going to come across it.
Furthermore we don't always have access to models or photos when drawing so knowing construction gives you the ability to draw and learn without having the whole reference in-front of you. IF you know the intricacies of how a human body is structured you can actually draw one nearly perfect from any position. There have been times when I surprsied myself by ostensibly drawing a part of the body from a point of view I've never studied and when I compared my drawing to myself in the mirror I was shocked by how accurate my imagination was.
Tldr don't focus on one or the other, find a balance.
y'all should remember that construction is pretty much a 20th c. invention. The old greats - caravaggio, rembrandt, bouguereau, sargent - never constructed a figure in their lives.
they also achieved all their mastery with something that was basically sight-sizing (w/o the pretentious name etc), so I'm pretty sure
hasn't a clue what he's talking about.
>y'all should remember that construction is pretty much a 20th c. invention
Nah, maybe it isn't so obvious because almost all of their studies were scrapped but they used a type of construction, just not as blocky.
You should remember that construction isn't some evil invention by modern day artists to torture noobs like you. It is a tool to make it easier for you to draw things in proper perspective, by breaking down complex objects into simplified 3 dimensional shapes.