Master copy #1

The past month I have been focussing on doing drawing exercises to improve my representational skills.

Master Copy

This was my first attempt at a copy of a drawing done by a well accomplished artist. In this case, the artist was Rubens. The idea of doing this is two fold: 1- to be able to accurately transcribe the proportions and values as an exercise in observation, and 2- to glean knowledge and understanding about how the artist approached drawing their subject and solved visual problems.

I was also using this as a test of the sight-size method of drawing (explained here)

Here is my set up.


Amazingly, I did not notice my fantastic error of proportion on the placement on the eyes until I was too far into applying the tones to adjust it. At that point I decided to continue the drawing to a reasonable finish anyways, to combat my tendency to continually leave things unfinished.

It was a good lesson not to trust my own eyes! Sometimes they can trick you into believing what you are seeing is accurate... this is where a mirror can come in handy to give you a different perspective. Next time!

Here is the finished study. I couldnt get as dark as the original, as Rubens was likely using charcoal and I was using graphite which tends to get quite shiny with the softer lead (hence the reflection on the left).