Visit our websiite at

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Figure Drawing

When asked if someone would like to pose, this model jumped up
and excitedly said he would like to.  I love the pose he decided to,
a real natural!

I had my first experience in figure
drawing when I went to college, and I loved it.
When I taught High School I would have my students do gesture drawings of each other because I felt I had missed out by not having that experience in High School, but also the practice of quickly drawing and studying the figure helps clear the mind of what we think the body looks like, and open our mind to studying what is really there in front of us.
The age of my students may have changed, but the process and joy that comes from figure studies and gesture drawing has not. In fact I find without the hesitation that comes from years of worrying "I can't do that," that many high school students and adult often have, these 3-5 year olds really excelled and enjoyed the whole process.  

I first had the children study a drawing manikin and try drawing the figure that way.

This was a great introduction to what was next because they calmed their bodies and took their time really looking at the manikin as they drew.

Following drawing from the manikin, the children took turns modeling, and the others took their drawing clip boards (Matte board with sheets of paper that are paper clipped to the board) and gathered on the floor looking at their model.  Just having the opportunity to not only stand on the the table, but also be allowed to be creative with the way they could stand on the table, was a thrill for many of the kids, and they were wonderful models.

Each child had their own unique style, and each drawing really captured the model according to that style.  I was truly impressed with the drawings, but also the focus and attention they had while creating their artwork as well as modeling.
Drawings from the above pose.
Another Pose with examples of the children's work

Below you will see the children and model at work with a drawing in process and the final drawing.

After some time of doing individual poses, things were switched up by having two children pose,  
once again the children impressed me with their outcomes.

One last example of a pose and resulting drawing. 

As an art teacher I am so impressed with what these very young artists were able to accomplish.
It is not just the drawings that came out of the experience, it is also the length of time they were able to stay focused and engaged with the process.  There was no hesitation, they were fully involved with the experience of art making.  This is what I work towards with the children; an openness to experiment, play and work with materials and art forms, and to hold fast to the wonderment of that experience.  When I see it manifest in a project that may seem to some as "too advanced," my beliefs in the capabilities of young children are reinforced and I become even more excited for whats next to offer the children to keep the interest and skills alive and fun.

1 comment: