Who says lessons in proportion, sketching, line variation and shading aren’t the stuff of summer vacation fun ?! I certainly had fun as I worked with 8 great kids between the ages 8 and 12 in my “How To Draw Your Favorite Animal” class last week.
I had the kids start by drawing with no instruction from a picture they chose of their favorite animal. We then used this to do a “before and after” to compare with a drawing they did from the same picture at the end of the class. We did an art show for the parents on Friday, showing these before and after drawings – and one of the most rewarding moments is when the kids themselves walked through the show and marveled over how all the drawings had improved!
My main focus for the class was “draw what you see!” (a phrase I’m sure most of the kids are still hearing in their sleep). The idea here is to focus on what is really there instead of what you think is there. You may be amazed at the difference!
After “draw what you see”, the #1 thing I had them work on was to focus on the “big stuff” first. In this lesson, we talked about how it won’t matter how good the details or shading are if the proportions and shape of the animal aren’t correct first. So we did exercises to teach them how to find and draw proportions, how to find the big shapes in the animal (and to draw these big shapes before the features or details) and the importance of the initial sketch.
Then we were able to do exercises focusing on details like the eyes, nose, ears and mouth (focusing on the “draw what you see” lesson!)– as well as techniques for using line variation and shading to create shape and detail.
After 10 hours of drawing fun (and a lot of work) – we got some great results. Below are some before and after shots of the kid’s animals! Enjoy!