Thursday, December 18, 2014

Sketching Volume: The Dreaded Chair

Chairs.  Drawing a chair is a bit like climbing Mount Everest to me.  Too much to tackle for my sketchbook and I.   I've tried and produced only really wonky designs.  For me it has been too hard to draw a chair.

Chairs.  We sit in them all the time.  We appreciate the antique ladderback and the overstuffed recliner.  We occupied many at desks in school.  Some of us occupy them in offices.  We sit in them to enjoy entertainment.  We sit in them to wait for doctors or dentists or to get our driver's licenses renewed.  We are are plenty familiar with chairs.  But, sheesh, they are hard to draw.

Chairs.  It's the common things in life that so often confound us.  But when we can start to see things in different ways, we find new ways to approach old mysteries.  Like how to draw a chair.

In Liz Steel's Sketching Now Foundations class, our recent lesson instructed us to draw volume.  To draw all sides of an object in 3D as if the objects were transparent--so that you can work out (in pencil!) all of the lines and edges and angles which you cannot see.  That way, when you ink the drawing, you can be sure that the visible lines are correct.

At first this seemed too easy a concept to really be valuable, but as I've admitted in previous posts, this is a lot harder than it looks.  Even for "simple" objects like stacked books.

Then she told us to try a chair!  In public!!

I admit I put it off.  But inevitably I found myself in a waiting room (as we all do) that had no decorations and no other people in it.  So, left with no alternative other than reading months-old magazines, I decided to try to sketch a chair.

All I can say is, wow.  It looks like a chair.  I am pleased.

For me the biggest Aha! moment is not how to draw a chair.  The meaning comes in the reminder that the lessons someone wants to teach me, which at first seems to be too simple to really make a difference, might be exactly what I need to solve a problem I've carried around for a while.

Drawing is life.  Scribble on!

No comments:

Post a Comment