- Lesson details
In this lesson:
In the tenth part of our comprehensive How to Draw the Costumed Figure course, you will learn Bill’s theory of breaking the drawing process into three clear stages: rendering line, rendering mass, and rendering form. These stages can go in a different order but always one at a time. Bill also will cover major and minor key concepts. You will be working with charcoal and colored pencil.
In this course:
Learn how to draw the costume and props from reference or from imagination in this immense course by three senior New Masters Academy instructors – Disney art director Bill Perkins, film and game character designer and figure painter Charles Hu, and internationally renowned draftsman Glenn Vilppu. Drawing from live models and photo references, as well as master drawings of the past, you will learn to capture expression, performance, emotion and weighting of the pose as well as shapes and rhythms created by the costume folds. Bill Perkins teach you the action analysis study developed in Walt Disney Studios for animators. Charles Hu will demonstrate how to directly sketch costumed figure using many different media and how to apply language to your drawing. With Glenn Vilppu you will learn the seven major folds as well as approaches for using drapery to push the gesture of the pose and showing the form beneath in the case of clothing, as well as how different weights of fabrics behave differently.
This course is perfect for fine artists, entertainment designers, illustrators, comic & anime artists, and animators, as well as portrait painters or for anyone who wants to draw or paint drapery from observation or imagination.
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a model and we're going to be looking at grouping some of the
areas and kind of experimenting with some of the marks that we
make, keeping things kind of focused into either rendering
some kind of a mass area or line or form and so we'll just
keep practicing that and that's something that you can you can
keep doing on your own. So
let's get started.
You can see that
trying to get the most predominant things is
he's got a wide stance coming in here and then
proportionately you're going to look at, you know, where is your
height somewhere in here? If I do something like that. Now if I
just take a rough measurement
of the masses, if I say
let's just -
I'm trying to find a balance in the middle here.
Okay. Okay. So his - from his shoes
to up here see - get that again.
Yeah, okay from the shoes to up the top up here about in the
middle, it's about the middle here, is his vest. And his vest
is a shape something like this. Okay. So if we say it's
proportionally that kind of a shape, right? Move it back
here just a little bit
this coming here. See the thing is I think instead of worrying
about proportions you're worried about every shape
first. And I think the thing is is if you look at
something like that and say, okay, what's actually
going on? You just want to get the proportion up here, right?
Then don't worry about the exact shape with every
proportion. You kind of - its like take on one ball at a time,
throw one up in the air, don't try to throw them all up in the air
at the same time, right, and the same thing here. If he's got
an eye line somewhere in here that gun - if we were looking up
at him the gun is going to be up a little bit higher maybe
like that. So we're going to look at it. Eye line here and
then I'm going to look at you know, okay, what's the
proportion or the distance. It's like this is the same as
it's coming out at us a little bit like this.
And his elbow is going to be below here. See this is what's
going to make that difference.
We think that it's way out here, but it's not, his elbow's
right in here. Right? So his elbow is like right in here.
And then if I have that then I'm pretty much
sure on how the rest of this is going to go.
And then I can look and say, okay from my - as far as my
proportions go this is up higher.
How much across is this? I'm right in here, right?
Like this and then this is coming down just a little bit
straighter like, like that.
So I'm getting those shapes in there
and I can see the button right there.
Like this and then there's his shoes.
Yeah, don't worry about getting everything because honestly you're
going to be able to go over this stuff.
And if he's not standing, if he's kneeling or
whatever what you want to do is you want to look at you know,
what's the the general axis of him and what's the proportion
You see once I put those those proportions, I get kind of get
those proportions, I can kind of rub that down just a little
bit and then I can go in and get the things that are
really important. And what I'll look at now is
what are the shapes that are actually moving
my eye with it since we're talking about that. What are
the shapes that are actually moving my eye around and I'm
going to look for those things that are important
like this to this, you know, coming around here. If I come
around here, maybe I want to make more out of his pocket
right? Maybe I want to pick that up, make a little bit
more out of that.
Okay, because you see that I'm bringing this alignment down
here and I'll do the same thing up here.
You see so I'll bring that up on this and then make this come
out of here and bring this around. Okay, so I'm bringing
this around all the way up to here,
continuing that like that and then down and up and around. Now
if I bring this up here again, what I can do is as I can start
bringing this down, if I want to create an arrow going down I'm
going to create this. I see this and use this as an arrow
going down. I'm going to bring this down. I'm going to bring
this down, right, create this shape coming down here. And
then what I'm going to do is I'm going to follow this around
and continue there right there. I'm looking for things that
will move the viewer's eye.
And if I start, if I go here watch what happens here?.I'm
going to go back over here. I go to the other side and I pull
this around to this side because those are going to be
the lines - you can pick any kind of lines but those are going
to be the ones that are going to help move your eye. Same with
his foot, at an angle like this you're going to you know,
having an angle like that and kind of pull the back.
Like this, this is again this is an axis line. So it's going
to kind of move your eye this way.
Coming in here,
moving it down here,
And then I'm going to go under here like this too, see because I
can see that's a dominant shape over there.
And then over here goes from the outside in like that.
And that's going to reinforce that one there.
I want to move the eye back up. I'm going to look for something
So these are going to be the important lines that I kind of
pull out of that.
And you can always go back, you know, that's why I kind of just
kind of rough some of this stuff in,
because you can always go back and, you know, fine-tune things
and find things, you know, in here, make things work out.
Yeah, I mean don't feel like it has to be totally
perfect. You know, get your your
large things to balance well, and then and then you can
start breaking it out from there.
And it also can give you a point of view. For instance once I
have something like this now I can pull this tighter that I can pull this tighter
into his shoulder,
I can get this a little bit more like that.
Okay. So one of the things that I wanted to kind of go over today
was kind of,
you know, again grouping elements up there and grouping elements up there and
kind of since everything that you do, every mark you put down
is going to be some either directional or contour
kind of an element,
you know, and the way you put it down is going to have more
to do with your, you know, whether you're depicting form or
you're just creating an account or whether it's just lines.
you can make some distinction between which bias you
you're dominant with. For instance
I'll just I'll go ahead and just kind of start this.
If I just kind of block in first, I'm just going to kind
of block in
what I see up there.
Okay, so I've just got kind of a rough indication of
kind of just the direction into some of the proportion going on
up there. And so then what I can start to do is make a
determination whether what I want to do in want to what do I want to do in
terms of you know, these these mass groups. Okay, say I want
to take and create some some dark pattern in there. So maybe
I'm going to go and accentuate something like this
of a dark mass, but I'm going to make sure that that shape
has some directional significance to the overall
drawing. So the shape is going to, you know, I'm going to
utilize something with us with this shape. I'm even gonna push it
up just a little bit more on the inside than I see it up
there and then continue it up here.
I'm going to see that there's the band that goes there's the band that goes
around the top up here, his ear.
And then his hair, maybe what I want to do is give
a bit of a difference of
So maybe I'll just get - make it a little bit different in
there just so that it -
I can contrast this little bit. Contrast against
everything in here. So I'm moving this up in here. Maybe
what I'm going to do - and these are very flat in here. Maybe
what I'll do is I'll do the same thing with
his boots. Maybe I'll just get a
and a dark.
So now I can get these two things if I want some kind of a
closure on that, maybe what I'll do is maybe I'll go to a little
bit more form
and then maybe even just use some lines.
But as long as I'm clear on what element I'm using is
dominant, then it's going to work out fine. The it's going to work out fine the
minute that I'm not sure what my mark is actually doing,
whether it's creating a contour, whether it's
creating a light to shadow side if I'm consistent with my thin
and thick lines or if it's just a random weight line.
Those things are all have variations here, you know, so
I've got the options here. So if I just put a lot of
let's just say I put a lot of lines in here
and I want to work them as lines maybe they're folds, but I
want to kind of play into these lines and maybe what I want to
do is get a line or two in here as well in its darker area
just to harmonize that, you know, so now I can get a little
bit of a line in a dark area. I don't want to stand out too
much because I want to keep this as a mass in here, but
even if I just kind of did a,
you know, something like that just to graphically pick up a
line to line in here, you know, if his vest comes down like this
and then let's just say
the inside padding of this thing like this and I just kind of
follow a line here, I could do the same thing
here, and I could get some kind of a
closure if I go to the top here and down like this.
So I'm just kind of - I'm kind of anticipating how I can kind of
move your eye around or change up some of the marks.
Now some of the lines - I might I might create some lines that
have some actual overlap, but try not to define so much
shadow shapes, you know.
Things that overlap like this. Maybe I could get him to do
something like that. Or maybe what I'm going to do is if I
want to get more shadow in there like this, I can play up
the shadow shape a little bit.
If it's going to help me, if it's going to help move my eye maybe
down to here or something if this area here is going to have a
little bit of more form.
You can do something like that. I know he's got...
So I'm just looking to break up this.
You know once you settle on something, you you settle on something, you
know, whatever it is.
You know once you - and we talked about this the first
week, when we just kind of get the emotion across - once you
figure out the attitude, the emotion that
you're going to have in there then you can look at okay
well, what am I going to do with my volumes? What am I
going to do with my - do I want to make volumes out of them, do I
want to keep shapes? Keep them in shapes. How do I want to go
about it? This is where you can start making those differences.
But don't be afraid to go ahead and just scribble it in there.
Let's just - let's do some tens. Okay,
so this will give you a little bit more time to just kind of
just ease into just a subtle
lay in. Okay, and then it'll give you give you a little more time
to really kind of play with and think about the you know, the
shapes and stuff and what you're going to do with it.
kind of go in and kind of pick
how I want to interpret some of these
shapes and forms and lines and through here. I can play with
all this kind of stuff. And then it gets a little more
Once I have that in then I can I can continue to work on it
as well, so.
I'm looking at negative spaces too you know, look at the
negative space in here, going to draw with that, and then
continue that around just to see where
I'll make sure that I get the right distance is between the,
you know, my volumes. The negative spaces in between are
just as important.
Just kinda looking at the construction I'm not getting
in my drawing.
Yeah, and how they kind of tuck in and move over from here.
This distance is always kind of interesting, particularly on
Well, that's just it, if you kind of
think it through you can you know, you can turn, you know,
you can turn things a little bit better, but you know, I
the main thing is kind of look at
you know, like you said there's a certain comfort
zone that you get but if you start to see, you know, like
you know, like Steve puts it
gesture and structure, you know, you're going to get -
you're going to get some things in here that are going to
help move your eye around. You know, that kind of a thing.
You know muscle to bone.
Back in here like this and then back, coming back into the
shoulder and here you're going to get a little bit more in
here. But this here is where this tucks in here. So this, you
know, on this last pose there was a little bit extra fold
that was in there and then the muscle in here
into his wrist because his wrist was tilted back like
Well, I think as far as a shorthand goes it really, you
know, you're looking at - you're looking at like things like
rectangles. But here's the thing with rectangles, if
you're going to make them feel organic. They're going to be
A rectangle would normally go like this, right? Okay, but if
it's organic, it's going to have a twist. That's how our
bones are structured and our muscles are wrapped around it.
That's why we can carry our weight. Okay, and it makes us -
and all organic things it allows you to get a
better structure if there's a little bit of a twist
in there. So if it's something like this and you get a little
bit of a twist, you see,
there's a little bit more dynamic quality to it than just
architectural straight, like that. So, you know, most things
have a certain little twist to it. So you're looking at
this, if you're using cylinders and circles
you're going to look for something that wraps around.
Right? Because that's going to give you the same thing as a
twist. If you have a box say that's, you know, your hand.
You know, then you've got the front of the box and then the -
say your thumb.
If you have something like this, you might - you're going to
end up having some kind of a
peek if you will, you know, that's going to bring you back
and maybe you're going to have some kind of a twist in it.
Maybe this is going to be like this and maybe this is
going to be like this.
So you're going to get some kind of a twist in there.
There's going to be some kind of a rotation in there.
And then you can continue that rotation around.
I twisted this up here,
made this over overlap that, overlap that, and then when I
did is I brought this peak up high to push it over here so
that this can go higher and then down and then down.
Glancing at that, if you're looking at, you know, different
forms and stuff and how they work, whether it's a,
like I said, whether it's a rectangle or a cylinder,
you know, if it's a cylinder going back it's going to have
some kind of a movement that's going to wrap around it. If it's
a cylinder - or excuse me, if it's a box kind of a
thing it's going to have something that's going to
change it as well.
There's going to be some kind of a twist in there somewhere.
So when you look for the, you know, rhythms in some of these
forms and stuff you're going to see, you know, which direction
is it twisting and depending on the muscles and
and how things are moving then you're going to want to look at
those things and bend it that way just a little bit and
look for the things that, you know, look for the marks that
will help move that type of gesture. You know, if it's a
shoulder like this and the arm is coming across here and then
just say that the wrist, hand comes out this way.
Okay. And so if that's the case, then you're going to get
the back of the center of the hand, you know, like this,
and then this is going to wrap around because it's pulling
back, right? It's because the wrist is pulling back like
that. Okay, and then if you have this,
right, here coming in, this is going to swing around to that
because that's going to go a little lower and then
what's going to happen is if you twist up like that, you're
going to feel a little bit of the separation in the
muscle in here.
That's going to go in here like that. So you're going to twist
this around too
this coming back, this turning around here in the back these
little subtle little things in here. Also folding back into
this, that can push you back into this in the separation of
and then back on the back side so it can give you this kind of
a swoop down in here.
this and a little bit of this. So this is the
tapering that, bigger rhythm, right? Okay. So what's going to
happen is this is your matrix. You got a strong shadow shape
in here and your matrix is going to fall along here. This
is going to go into shadow here. Okay, so you have light
and shadow, those - that's your strongest aspect of your matrix
here and you're going to go - I'm just going to define that
And then folds on her.
That's going to bring your eye back around or the
over this way, right, over here
this way. Now from here when it comes in here like this on
your on your elbow it's how this bottom,
how that how soft and how you manage this edge that's going
to tell you everything.
And then this goes into a sharp small shape in there because
it's a fold.
The fold of the material,
right, going around here like this.
You can go in and you can start up anytime.
Don't wait for me.
And then this is going to go completely into shadow.
This is going to be your basic matrix. your basic Matrix.
Now you're going to get another plane, side plane in here.
And then you get the bottom of a muscle in here.
Not that dark. It's got got to remain light because this is
all in light.
So you got to make sure that it just stays just as a half tone.
And then whatever you come up here, you're going to have to
resolve it and it's going to resolve like that.
I made her arm too buff.
So you see this is a passage here and it's going to end in
this passage down here and that's going to connect these
And that's how you can keep it - keep a rhythm in there and also
keep it kind of feminine, you know, and then these are going
to come out of this like this.
And all of this goes into this shadow shape, too.
From the chair coming down here his leg is kind of tucked into
there and then coming out here
I was just paying attention to where
his leg comes down, it turns right at his knee in
here, right, and
then from his knee because his kneecap comes because his kneecap is comes
right in here there's also these folds that come out
because his calves come out here and in here his pants are
are tight to the point where they'll come from the bone
here out and then another one out, just a couple small things. But
what does is it will start to pull from here and
here as well? Okay, so that will give you this kind of a
direction that's going to, you know, determine where his - where
his knee is and then down in here it's going to go, it's
going to fold back into his boot.
So I'm looking for I'm looking for.
folds wrap around, that's going to tell me a lot too.
if I say, you know, his knee is in here like that. I'm going to
go from the inside to the outside over here, right? I can
see that kind of picks up something there, but it wraps
around his leg in here and again above here too.
Something like this.
So you can get the sense that it's going around and which way
it's going around. So if his foot is turned in like this,
then his calf is going to be
wide - or part of the muscle's going to be out on the outside,
right because it's turning that way, right? So coming off of
this it's going to be doing something like this.
It's going to be turning this way and then fold down in here
and it's going to go back into his boot in here.
Like that. And then on the inside this is going to go across here
Like that, so I get a movement, you know kind of a rhythm
that's going to go from - continue from here to here to
here around, even pull up into here. I see a lot of folds
up there, but I'm only going to choose one that's going to come
across here, you know, and kind of move me up into there. If I
go up in there then maybe I'm going to kind of pick it up
here somewhere and turn that so that it goes up into
this area in here.
For instance my other leg I've got kind of confusion going on
in here. So I have to really determine what is it -
how do I want to move your eyes? See this one was easy
because what I did was I could move your eye up this
fold and then across and over the leg this way and up. So it
spirals around to end that spiral, I can come over here and
then get the get this wide out here but tight on the inside.
And then on the inside of the boot here.
Okay. So now I've gone from the inside to the outside, back to
And over here. Do I want to come back up this way? Do I
want to come up that way, you know, the way the folds seem to
be going are a little bit around or under his knee here.
So if his knee is is right about in there I can turn
these just a little bit
and it looks like this is wrapping around here like this.
And if I go up this way, then I want to make sure that I come
and then in here
I'm moving across the form in some way. You know, I'm looking
to kind of go across a form. So if I'm pushing here, let
me make this less important over here by making
this more important over here. For instance this, this coming
across the outside. If I'm going to do that then maybe
what I'll do is I'll get to the inside on this side and bring
it in here in some way, like maybe the -
his pants are fold tucked into the under the boot,
tucked into his boot this way.
That way it will bind up here on this side. If it's binding
on this side, then it's going to be out on this side, right?
A lot of times, you know, for drawing or painting we might
look at it as passive and active, you know, and that's
going to happen - that's going to happen as well. Like you might
have something passive over here, let's say, and then we've
got something active
over here you see so you're always looking from side to
side and you're always, you know, making sure that you get
something from passive to active, you know, moving across
so if this is active and maybe this is going to be passive.
If this is active this is passive then maybe this
is active. So maybe we pull this down here. Okay, we got a
bend in there, a curve. So this is bumpy here, straighter here,
curved here, straighter here.
And then maybe I'm going to make more out of this
fold coming out of here now.
So I've got active, passive, active, passive, active,
passive coming up in here,
passive. And things will flow like that. So look for
those things too, look for rhythms to flow like that
because they will, you know, I mean, it's - they're kind of just,
they kind of just happened. So
yeah, some of the things you get the proportions there
working but then on top of that, then what you want to do
is think about moving the viewer's eye around your form,
and from one area to another take a piece of tissue
paper, put it over the top, and just draw over the top of your
drawing and just reinforce the directional lines that wrap
around, that move you from one area to another you can do
this. Same thing if you want, okay put a piece of tissue over
your drawing and just draw the lines that that wrap around or
go, you know and reinforce, you know, the directional rhythms.
For instance. If I go up here like this -
if I go up here like this
and bring his leg down like this. Okay. Now
he's sitting a little bit at an angle. So this is going to
be coming out a little bit like this. Okay, but his knee is
going to be somewhere in here.
If it comes around like this and then comes around
I can pull a fold out of this right in here because it's
a corner. Okay, and then I can come down and go in here. Maybe
I want to pull it kind of tighter in here. So I'm going
to jump to the inside and see what I can find.
Right. I'm going to see what I can find that's going to pull
this and create this Rhythm into the back of his his boot
Okay, so if this is coming around and around here like
you know, the next question is well, where does it
go from here? If it comes around here maybe you're going
to go all the way across and move your eye here, or maybe
it's going to go all the way across over to here. It's not a
case of just straight alignments, one thing can be
here and one thing can pick up there. But
yeah, there's a couple of things. One, you know, once you
get your your your structure on there then maybe what you want
to do is you want to look at how these things move your eye
Around those shapes, right? So
this is what's going to give you a lot of the rhythms and so
on. And I talked about like dealing with line mass and
and the one thing that you know, if you're drawing there's
a lot of people that will just draw the line straight up and
it looks like you know, they're great draftsman and they just
draw without any construction, without any anything underneath,
But the tendency is or the the reality is
just this, I'll draw it on here because then I
can flip the tracing paper down.
but and what they have to go through is understand where the
silhouette is, what's going on with the silhouette.
So this is your mass.
And if you get your silhouette, right,
you know, and this is kind of a 2D pattern that you're going
to get out of this.
Okay, so here's kind of the 2D pattern.
and you have to see that first.
So even if you're just drawing with one line straight up, you
have to see this in your head first, right, and register that.
Then what you're going to do is is on top of that you're going
to have these volumes, you're going to be looking at how do
the volumes work?
this volume comes out here like this. This one comes up here
How things might
taper in here and overlap.
So you're going to get the sensation of what's in front of
I'm pushing this back a little bit to kind of
to get it to go back there.
So, you know, there's volumes here this
surface that will turn and go back, that'll describe
some of those
folds. So we look at a volume or volumetric kind
of a feeling there
a lot of times what people will just see -
I'm going to put another piece of paper down
What people see is if someone's going to come in, if you
visualize these things, then you can kind of come in and
straight ahead. But you have to - you have to
visualize those other elements in there first in order to get
all of those things,
So this might be just
what you might see.
Can see that I'm off a little bit here. I'll fix that.
So this might be - this might be the end - the thing that you see.
The bottom there.
Alright, so this might be the drawing that you see
someone just kind of blast out a drawing and it's like well,
how did they get all of that in there? It starts with the
silhouette and then it ends - it goes with the volume. And the
interesting thing is
it starts with this which represents a silhouette or
This depiction of mass. And then you're looking at your
volumes, right, and how these these are these things actually
go into one another right?
You have to go through the process and this would be - this
would be the forms.
Right. So you're looking at volumetrically and forms,
whether it's light and shadow or not you're just defining
where that is. And then this, this is where you're more
concerned with the character of the line.
And what the line is doing in terms of its line weight
you know any calligraphy or you know, if you Griffey or you know, if you
want to go in and just go in and define
forms clearly, you know if that's the kind of line that
you want to put and how you want to create those shapes. If
you want to do that just say there's a light coming from
that direction over there.
When we draw
we need to finish one thought first. You always need to
finish one thought at a time. You can't think of multiple
things at one time. You have to finish a thought. So if I start
with this side, I should end with this side. Okay, I need to
complete an idea and I find with most of my drawings if I
start going all the way down here and then I come back and
try and do this my proportions are off. I'm usually lost, you
know, quite a bit. So usually what you need to do - for
my first head drawing class in college was really the first
thing that he had us do was to do a very very careful
articulate drawing - I'll do this up here - but we spent a long
time getting a very accurate measured drawing and it's all
just very carefully structured. Measured like the top of the
ear here goes to the cheek here the nose rides just a little
bit higher up here and then coming out here, you know, so
it's all about getting the right angle getting the right
proportions and and getting all of this stuff first, right?
But this is kind of the the way that we might have been taught
to do this where you're defining in line all of the
proportions, right and the shapes very carefully.
So you're getting all of these things very accurately as
accurate as you can.
I'm just racing through this but you know, you try to get it
just as accurate as you can.
Okay. Now here's what would happen.
the first class that I that I kind of taught
at a at a major school, it was really a case where I went back
to the same class, the teacher that taught me this, he retired
and when he retired he asked if I would go back and finish
out the semester, right, and what I found was just this:
most of the students would start off like this. Now this
was our first - the first thing you do is a very careful
line drawing then he put a strong light on the model and
you are you still you did this first and then you determined
you know, if there was a strong light or light direction. A
couple light directions on this so I'll just give one light
direction. Let's just say that it's a strong light direction
coming this way, right? So what you end up doing is you end up
drawing first your line drawing and then the shadow shape.
Very carefully you're drawing the shadow shape and how
lightful falls over the model.
And this becomes a very strong shape.
Okay, so you can see how that starts - to how that starts to
Okay, so there's there's a shadow shape, right? So you
make a real clear shadow shape and make sure that all of these
things are very careful, very articulate, stuff like this,
and then the third part was to go in and say, okay let's take
a look at the
the local values. Okay. Let me get a more of a shadow in here
and I get the whole scarf in. Okay get this. I'll get the
And I'll get the top here, too.
I'll just put in his hair.
Okay. So what we might do then is you might look at the local
values and say oh, well this, the strap and his hair, is the
And I can determine whether, you know, I did the light and
shadow area I can say okay, well this then these
areas are real dark.. I'll get the local nights. I'll get the local
values in there. These are
Okay, so I'm getting that and then what you're going to do is
you're going to look at - you might say okay well what's
lighter or darker is his skin dark? I'll make this scarf
light. So I'm going to get a little bit of this.
Okay, and his skins a little darker.
So I'm going to get some of this in here.
I'm looking at the local colors or the local values
and I'm going to
need to make sure they get this right in here.
And ultimately you end up with something. That's a low
volumetric right, but we started with a very careful
line, then we laid in the shadow shape,
right, and then we laid in our local values.
Okay, and monitor the edges, okay, harder edge. I'll
reinforce the edge of the shadow shape here, soften this
up, cast shadow's a little bit hard, form shadow's a little bit
softer, right so I can just deal with that kind of
stuff and clean that up. Now what I found, this is really
kind of interesting, what I found was when I went in and
sat in on this class they all started with a line drawing,
very carefully. Okay, they all started doing it, but before
they finish the line drawing maybe they get down in here,
something like this. They start putting a shadow shape in.
And then they go back and start working on the line a little
bit and then they put in local value a little bit.
And then they go back in and start working on the form a
Okay, you see how confusing this becomes? What ends up
only those three - if you're just dealing with those three things
you just finish one thing at a time.
Just finish one at a time. The minute you stop and start
rearranging what you're thinking is and now you're
redoing it. That's when you start losing track. And what
you'll begin to do is chase your tail and you think okay
well what's important? Why am I doing this? Why doesn't it look
right? You start asking those kinds of questions rather than
okay just get the line drawing first. Then what's the shadow
shape, if it is a strong shadow shape and you know, what does
that - just finish it all out and then the next layer and
then the next layer and and it's really going to work out
fine. So what I did was - and this is when I was really I saw
the students mess up. They all started off really well by
lunch. They messed up after lunch. They started off really
well again, and then by the afternoon they messed up and so
I went home and I tried to figure it out, I went back and I looked
at the notes and just remembered oh, yeah, we drew
this way for three weeks or five weeks and then this we
added this to it as we got faster. Then we added this to
it. It makes sense. But really when it comes down to it
there's two things. One the clarity of thought. Okay finish
a thought and the next thing was that keeps you focused. And
the next thing was your application, was about the
application. It started with the mass.
Or the line in this case. It started with a line and then it
went to form and then it went to local values or mass over
the top. Okay, so I was trying to figure out what was
because I started learning new things about, you
know, filmmaking in imagery and stuff like that and there were
two things that were missing. The components that we talked
about were one thing but there were two things that were
And one of them was specifics on how we compare one thing to
another and that's your major minor key that came from
another source. That was like wait a minute, your key
was always something vague to me and I always thought well
that's value or color. But your
key, you could key shapes, you could key values, you could
key textures, you could key anything. And you have a major
and a minor key. You have the greater proportion, whatever is
the greater proportion. Like there's more
light than dark. Okay, so proportionally there's more
light than dark. That's your major key overall light. Well,
I also have - if its overall light with my range of contrast,
here's overall light as well and very little contrast.
Here's overall light and a medium contrast and here's
overall life with a dark contrast.
This is the range of contrast. That's your minor key.
And this is flexible too. So we have the proportion and we also
have the range of contrast. Okay, so we have those two
things that we can deal with in there. So this measuring tool
see, at that point prior to this it was like similar or
different that was it. But when you do this now, it's more
articulate. Now you can say what's the proportion, what's
the range of contrast and now you can get - you can measure,
this is all about measuring, okay?
Then understand that this measuring or method of measure,
your major key and your minor key, right?
Major and minor key.
So that has to do with with proportion
and this has to do with range of contrast.
Okay, so that's what's going on here. Then the other missing
link was the idea of of line, mass,
So by going back to this process where you start with a
careful line drawing, then you go to form, then you go to - this
was just a procedure in the in the steps that I
learned to draw stuff. But then when I started looking at that,
I thought oh, that's what they did and so that's what I did.
you end up with
something like this, I can show you here. Okay, I've
got - I'll just do a line drawing like this. So I've got a line.
so there's a line drawing.
If I do a careful line drawing that's one thing. And then if I
follow that process what I do is I - but I'm just going to do
one at a time.
Right? So if I use form I'm going to add the form
on here and I'm going to add it all totally black. That was the
way we did it. All totally black.
So you're just marking what's in light and
what's in shadow
and creating that
I'm going to deal with mass and local values.
Okay, and let's just say that the ball is
let's just say the ball is a light value like this.
The ground here is a little darker.
Make a difference.
And then I'll make the background,
a color of value in here. Maybe I'll make this darker.
So I have three values,
three local values.
And these local values, you know, when I take the lines and
it should read it in a flat shapes, okay?
Okay, so if I take the form out you see now there's
Okay, there's mass.
And when I broke it down this way
the students responded and they they improved immediately,
immediately, because they cleared they cleared up their
thinking. They did their line first and then determined the
mass and then they put their local values in. Okay, so that
So I was all excited about that and I went back to work. I was
working over at Disney that time and I went back to work
and I took my three pieces of tissue paper and I threw them
down on the table like this and I said, oh, yeah, I did this
thing and it all worked out and I looked on at that,
what I remembered.
See how strong the shadow is? And so I rearranged it
and I did this,
I said no, that's not exactly what I remember either.
Then I rearranged them again,
I thought no that's not completely right either. But if
I take this, if I slip this a little bit or move it this way
just a little bit, okay. Look what just happened in here.
I create the illusion of a core and I get the illusion of
light. So I've just combined the line and mass and created
the illusion of form.
So that wait a minute this is crazy. Right? So I started
looking at this combination and started realizing yeah, the
like color if you add two you cancel the third. Here you can
add two and create the illusion of the third. So then I started
looking at different artwork and
and I started realizing that
from cave paintings to Egyptian art through the Renaissance to
computer animation, it's all a matter of just these three
components. That's it. Now when you're doing animation, you
know, I went right back in and started looking at animation
and started thinking about it and I saw some early diagrams
and references when they were a long long time ago, and in a long long time ago, and
when they were explaining it like for Wonderful World of
Color and stuff like that when they were explaining the Art of
Animation, right? They would do a little process they would do,
you know, they would start with a line drawing right and they
start with a line drawing like this and then it would go to
a situation where they put in -
they go from the line drawing and put in local values,
my terrible Mickey here.
Okay, so they put in - then they put in the local values, right?
And then what they do is they do another
effects layer that might go over that that is basically
And this black
layer would get double exposed or they'd expose it on here on
this this thing and what would happen would be this will become
they'd kind of blur it and it go on there. So look we started
with a line then painted mass and then with an
effects layer created form. So what ends up happening is
even the basics,
you know, the basic art form was really it evolved around
this. Nobody would nobody was really kind of writing that
down and so when it came time to design a
movie, I was trying to create the look for a film and
I was drawing and I was trying to find a way to draw this
thing and when I was doing it some drawings started to
get there and some didn't. And so what I did was I took the
drawings, all of them, all five of them. Three were working, two
were not but I couldn't explain why, I didn't know how to find
out why. And so I took those five drawings and then I took a
bunch of artwork, you know, from magazines, from pictures from my
art history books. I xeroxed them all, made a stack of drawings
and then what I did is I made cards and one was line, mass, and
form and one would be line over mass,
one would be form over mass, and the other one would be form over
And then I might have
line over form
right, and then I'd have mass
over line and over form. All right, so I had variables, I
made little cards and I put them down on the table and I
got my wife to take this stack of drawings. She's not an
artist at all. And I said can you take these drawings or
images of painting all throughout history, right, can
you take these and put them in their order by whatever is
She could read them like that. We all read things this way.
This is a unique thing we can all - when we know what to look
for we can break it down and I gave her the stack of drawings.
She just - like shuffling cards. And so you can go through all
of art history and you can break it into categories that
way in these three categories or and subgroups, you know,
whatever is dominate or subordinate and the nice thing
is that like color you can vary it up within the image. It doesn't
have to be all one or all another thing. There's
little variables in there, but wherever it's clear.
Those are the images that tend to end up in the museums. They
are the ones that seem to be timeless, the ones that are
clear. If you can't tell what's dominant
you won't see those paintings in museums. It doesn't mean
that it all has to be.
In one drawing you can have - in this situation
I can be taking something here and
mass, let's just say that I start with mass and I can be
to begin with
and my mass is dominant up here.
So I could start with mass in here like this, right, and
then I could go down and if I wanted to put form in here too I
could, but I'm shifting it up or I'm changing it up in a way
that's always keeping one dominant,
right? So up here it's mass dominant and maybe down in
here I'm making a little bit more form dominant.
So I'm getting a little bit of shading in here, right, something
And then maybe I want to make it
a little bit mass in here. I'll soften this up.
Just make his vest mass, just do that. So now let's say there's
light and shadow on him, right? And he's got one arm
out here like this. It's casting a shadow on his vest
now and this one down here. There's a shadow on there. But
if I wanted to bias this image and say this image, I
want more mass in here than form. I could put a little in
but just make sure that I don't put enough - put that
much - I don't put that much. And because if I did the more I put
in - this is a local value here -
and I put this a strong shadow shape in here, right? If I put
a strong shadow, this is shadow and light, this is form
dominant. This is mass dominant because the mass
a more complete than this breakup of light versus shadow.
this is a mass.
And I can even say this is mass.
Okay, this is mass.
Now if I go like this
and I give any reference to light and shadow this is
I could even do line with form secondary
by doing this.
It's one line
but it's line and this it goes thick and thin relative to one
light direction. Now if I did this
and did this,
okay, there's no light direction right? It's more
abstract. It's line for line sake, this is a line
dominant drawing, has nothing to do with mass, has nothing to do
with form. It's line for line sake. So we have complete mass. We
have aspects of form or we have line, real calligraphic
line that sits on the surface like a texture.
So those are the three distinctive components, that if
you bias things, like like I was saying with a vest,
if you don't make the shadow very dark and the
overall silhouette is this is the bigger shape. Well, then
that would be mass dominant. If you divide that vest into two
parts because this tonal contrast overpowers the local
value, now it's form.
That all happens. So everything has a local value and then light
hits objects. The question was
would that mean that that Norman Rockwell's paintings are
more mass dominant and they are mass dominant but see here's where
he's starting to get a little bit more dominant in mass, you see
he's locking the darks together and he's -
these are early. Okay, here's more of his later pieces. See
take a look at that. He's getting texture in these areas.
But if you squint, it's not - there's not real super it's not there's not real super
strong shadows. Okay, the other thing that he'll do he'll
change it up and by changing changing it up that's how you
create focus. Now take a look at the light shape on his shirt
and the rim light on his face. If I eliminate that, its total
mass, if you only focus on that area is total form people will
understand and perceive the mode when they don't even know
what what it is. We don't have to describe it to people ,you
get it, they get it, they can understand it because we read
it that way, right so our job is to be clear and consistent,
understand what we want to get across and then be clear and
consistent. He was clear and consistent because he
designed things. He photographed things very flat
lighting and then made sure there was local values that
created interesting patterns and that's how he started and
then as he rendered things what he was doing is he was just
doing small articulations of things but to make sure that -
let's say he has a dark belt in here, right and white pants.
Well, he would make sure that the shadows or the
folds are shadows in elements on his pants weren't getting as
dark as this or were going as dark as this, the belt being
local value might be really dark and he would make sure
that these - maybe there's a light coming from this
direction, but it would be full of brush strokes that are
giving him warms and cools and all kinds of beautiful nuances
in there and even turning form a little bit but not to the
degree that he was breaking it into this type of contrast.
designed by local values.
Okay, notan is mass dominant. It's mass.
Japanese term meaning light, dark.
It means light dark. Chiaroscuro on the other hand Kuro on the other hand.
this means light,
This is Italian.
Okay, this is Italian.
That means light
and oscuro shadow.
Light dark does not mean light shadow.
There's a difference because this would be a diagram of
light versus shadow.
So you have the effect of light shadow and the effect of light
dark and when you're going to do a landscape, let's just say
you're Monet and you're going to do some haystacks,
right, and you got these haystacks out here that's
what you're going to do. And guess what? You're going to
backlight these babies.
Because he was in interested and he was influenced by this.
So each of these things as a local value.
Okay back here is lighter
might be like this.
This is a notan design so this is all mass. Now
he also has a shadow in here, right?
But he's very clear that this shape is a shadow shape.
Okay, so this is - now it doesn't mean if you if you have
line is the other thing.
Okay. So what ends up happening is
line and texture work the same, they sit on the surface. Okay.
Now if I look at this, this is mostly - well it's all notan
here. But now there's some form in this image as well. But
remember I was talking about major and minor key, your major
key, our overall proportion is mass.
And you have your minor key or your minor key is a range of
contrasts. Well, this isn't super dark. And so maybe what I
would do is maybe I would get like I had mentioned before
color temperature. I'm going to get a broad range of color
temperature in this similar value range.
That's going to work like texture.
in these zones, that's what the French did, they were interested
in Japanese prints. And so they they use a line and texture in
these masses. Right? And so now you get temperature change
where you get rid of the appearance of reflected light
and all this volumetric light and all the stuff, but guess
what? It's mass, it's all notan.
And that's why I said you can create with texture and mass,
you can create the illusion of form.
So you just create - they created the illusion. And that's when
you get magic, you know, when you create something that is -
that appears to be something it's not, it has a greater
connotation. And that's the you know, and when
you're doing it with artwork, it's like it's an
illusion. Yeah, you're creating an illusion.
That's kind of intangible, you know.
that's the fun stuff.
A lot of people don't talk about it. I mean you take a
look around. I mean almost - go to the art store and almost go to the art store and
go look at art books and almost every single book will be on
form and how to render form, but guess what? Form is one side
of the coin. The other side is notan, who's talking about that?
Without the combination of the two
you can't understand one, you have to understand both. So,
you know, that's the thing. You can't understand one
without the other. You could create artwork that's
all one or all the other and you can muddle around but if
you understand that two things, what they are how they interact
and then you're just clear when you're in your execution
you're gonna do fine.
if you want to continue just keep focused on breaking down
your drawings and just be conscious of the marks that
you're putting down, you know, when you put them down, take one
step at a time
look at the basic shapes and then look at the volumes
and then look at the finished marks that you're putting down.
You got to consider all those things, but just take one thing
at a time and have fun with that.
Free to try
1. Lesson Overview35sNow playing...
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2. Drawing from a Live Model: 5-Minute Poses24m 9s
3. Drawing from a Live Model: 10-Minute Poses (Part 1)31m 41s
4. Drawing from a Live Model: 10-Minute Poses (Part 2)21m 40s
5. Drawing from a Live Model: 10-Minute Poses (Part 3)41m 58s
6. Assignment Instructions34s