Kipaipai -Class 2 Part 1

Week 2 of Kipaipai Atelier Drawing Class — Part 1:

  • I’m already much better at discerning differences.
  • I still need to work on my grey scale.
  • I could easily spend all my time drawing, I’m falling in love with it all over again.
  • Rose started us with blocking in tonal shapes, not letting us use many measurements. I think she wants us to get a feel for the shapes and worry about measuring it later.
  • I’m still having difficulty controlling the pencil for “side of pencil” shading. Practice, practice, practice…
  • The kneaded eraser doesn’t leave crap all over the drawing or the table and erases more cleanly. Who knew?  Rose did of course.
  • On the sheet of “what to do before drawing”: Observe:
    • Gesture
    • Relationships
    • Repeating lines
    • Repeating shapes
    • If these are in place, your finished piece of work will stand on its own. This is a missing piece of many of my previous paintings.  I just draw or paint what I see, whatever it is that interests me about a certain subject.  Luckily, what I see often corresponded with these relationships.  Here’s an example.  This is the painting I analyzed by Bouguereau.  I converted it to black and white to make it simpler to work with, and I was fascinated by it:



The energy in this simple painting is amazing.  I thought it was all about the curves, and the more I looked, the more I realized it’s all about triangles.  There are relationships EVERYWHERE.  The elbow to the nose.  The end of the hook through her skirt to her elbow.  Left elbow to the hat.  Even her head with hair makes a triangle.  It is simply amazing.  These relationships are what keeps the eye focused on the painting.  I knew I liked it when I picked it, and I had no idea why until I actually LOOKED at it.  I thought; corset, Irish, wench, sea.  Then, I saw relationship, relationship, relationship, and more relationship.  I only detailed a few of them in my drawing.  I sincerely doubt that I will ever plan my paintings the way I used to ever again.  This alone will take my art to the next level.

  • I’m already pulling my hand away from the drawing to do the measuring. Each day I use that skill I get better at it.  Today was difficult again because holding my arm still while outstretched is a completely new thing to do and I have to develop those muscles.
  • In looking at master drawings I found some of Waterhouse’s preliminary sketches.


This is a preliminary sketch for Lady of Shalott and the finished painting.

His sketches look a lot like mine!  This is an incentive for me to stop judging my initial drawings.  This is all about getting the idea down on paper so that you don’t lose the thought.  Fleshing it out happens later.  It is nothing more than shorthand; a mnemonic reminder of the image in an artist’s head.

I have barely started my drawing for the next class.  I’m too busy exploring all the other wonderful stuff I’m figuring out as I go along!


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