Line Variation and Weight

Line Variation.

In these drawings you are going to be exploring line variation. It is important that the lines in your drawings have varying thicknesses. Because of its versatility and ability to make highly varied lines we will be using a brush and ink. This will make the drawing appear more lively and dynamic. Later on will start exploring how different line thicknesses can also give a drawing “weight” but for this first drawing just trust your intuition and vary the thickness of your line. Before you start the shoe drawing I want you to fill up a page full of extremely varied squiggly lines. Get used to your brush and the type of line it makes, how it responds to different pressures. Then, once you feel comfortable you are going to move onto drawing your shoe. You may feel a bit of trepidation when you start the shoe drawing


because ink is so permanent, and there’s no eraser. This should only make you concentrate harder. If you screw up a line, don’t worry about it. Remember the practice is the most important thing at this point and not the finished drawing. Take 5 minutes to fill up a page full of squiggly, highly varied, lines, and then another hour doing at least two shoe drawings.


For this drawing you are going to have use you imagination. You are going to be creating an abstract drawing with form using nothing but line, and your brush. The structure of the drawing is simple. The bigger fatter lines come as all the lines converge at a certain point. You can make the shapes any way you want but just play with the thicknesses of your lines


Drawing Skills: Measuring


This lesson will deal with learning how to improve your drawing skills by creating a unit of measurement for drawing. You will use your pencil to measure and draw a still life which will be set up in front of you. In the first drawing by Honore Daumier you can see that the practice goes back many hundreds of years. People still use it, because it works.


All you have to do is hold a pencil or brush at arms length, close one eye, and move your thumb up or down the pencil to make a measurement. then compare that measurement to something else. Check out these two photos of me measuring distances between points on my guitar.
Here I measure from the bottom of the hole to where the neck meets the body.


I then keep my thumb in the same place on the pen, and compare my first measurement against the new one. Now I can make a better estimate as to how wide I need to draw the guitar. Judging from this photo it is about 1 and 1/3 pens wide at that point. Now correlate these measurements onto the paper in front of you. Remember, you don’t have to draw it to the scale of your pen measurements. Once you’ve committed to the first initial marks on your drawing you have already created a measuring system.Your units can be whatever size you desire.

Assignment – Measuring and drawing a corner of the room.

For this drawing I want you to draw a corner of the room while using this technique. Set aside one hour of time for this drawing and keep measuring and drawing until the hour expires. Remember that it is important to get a base unit of measurement first!

Required Drawings

1 Drawing of “line variation braids”

1 Drawing of your shoe ( or other object) showing a a variety of line thickness and weight.

1 Drawing of the corner of your room ( use measuring ) 

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