I hated leaving that last drawing post on such a half-hearted, leaning-towards-negative vibe, especially after you guys have been so encouraging and supportive. This week's classes were actually more fun and I was much happier with the results.
Both long poses were sitting, which I don't enjoy as much as reclining because there just isn't as much room for variety. What was interesting was that Monday we had a very fair-skinned female and from my position in the room she was mostly in light; not much shadow to put in. Then Wednesday we had a very dark-skinned male (exciting to finally have some dark skin to work from!), who had a lot of shadow from my position. My teacher's been urging me to not be afraid of working my charcoal so that I get some really dark areas, and I had a chance to really play with that Wed. Unfortunately, it also made it much more difficult to remove that when I wanted to lighten it up - and this is why I should have used white Conté crayon instead of just my eraser. I haven't really used the white Conté much, so that idea didn't really hit me till after I was done!
As usual, there are parts of each drawing that I like, and parts that I would love to change. Of course, making changes without the model there is ill-advised, as it's much more difficult to make something up that actually flows with the rest of the pose (and my anatomy knowledge is certainly better, but not that strong!). Therefore, that weird shading on Alice's right arm, and the lack of a face on Dr. Crow will have to stand as a reminder to work a little faster next time!
And I know I'm hard on myself, but my teacher is hard as well. For our midterm, we had to turn in 15 drawings from the classes we'd had to that point (4 gesture drawings, the rest a mix of medium-length and long poses). The one thing he really wanted me to work on was my shading. At least my teacher agrees with me on my strengths and weaknesses! He also pointed out to me, though, how much progress I've made since Spring semester. That is exciting to see, and I think, just as in spring, that the second half of the class I'll progress even further. I'm happy to say that the initial drawing of the long pose doesn't take me nearly as long as it used to. That means more time to concentrate on shading, which means more value differences and more time to work the details. Proportion and perspective are a lot more intuitive to me now than they were before. And let me tell you, it makes it so much more fun to then work the pose, instead of worrying about a leg being too long, or the head being too small. But, if it kills me, I'm going to get better at hands and feet this semester!!