Friday, March 23, 2007

Drawing a Head - 22nd March 2007

Drawing Two Heads - 22nd March 2007
each drawing is approx. 23" x 16", pencil
copyright Katherine Tyrrell
(click on image to see larger version)

Two drawings from my "Drawing a Head" class at the Princes Drawing School. I've been having terrible problems all term with my tenosynovitis which means that sustained drawing over a period of two and a quarter hours (in 3 sessions) becomes very difficult and I've been having to leave class early. I tried a new strategy yesterday and changed the timing of the medication which deals with the inflammation and pain so that hopefully it was full-on as opposed to 'running out' during the class. It seems to have worked because while the back of my hand swelled up as usual and I had some pain it wasn't enough to stop drawing.

For a class which is supposed to be about drawing a head the one thing I haven't tended to do is draw just one head. But I did this week - in fact I actually drew two heads!

I'm quite pleased with the chap although there's one area which I messed up and another which I think I could have done better. His drawing took just over an hour.

The girl is the same model as the one in "Waterhouse meets the dreadlocks". The position of the girl's head was my perspective on her while drawing the male model and I decided not to move - on the basis that drawing a head is about more than drawing a face! Drawing her took about 50 minutes. I rather like this one.

Please excuse the photos - the light here is dreadful at the moment and these are far too big to scan. I'll try and get a better photo later if the light gets any better.

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  1. Sorry to read about your tenosynovitis; it must be awful! These drawings are excellent, though. I love the quality of the pencil marks; even the backgrounds are interesting!

  2. These are both lovely - I particularly like the woman's head - it is such an interesting viewpoint

  3. These are wonderful. The modeling of the form is great and it's interesting how the male appears chiseled and angular while the female has soft rounded lines. Not being able to fully see the female's features makes it very intriguing--can't be sure if she's happy or sad.

  4. Nicely done. I did once run an oversized sketch by halves on my scanner bed, and then used a merge option in Photoshop to join the two. It worked great.

  5. Thanks folks.

    On Thursday night, I was just pleased to have got two OK drawings done having had such a bad time with the hand and arm for the past few weeks.

    However, the women's head is now getting a lot of very positive comment everywhere I have posted it. My tutor (who's a BP Portrait Award Winner and professional portrait painter) thought it was pretty good too - which was really nice!

    Although I don't normally do figure work except as commissions I'm wondering if I can maybe work it up into something more than just a pencil drawing.

  6. Casey - the problem with scanning this is that it wouldn't be just two scans it would be more like 4 as these are very big - 23" x 16". Which is why I think I'm going to stick with the photography - and just redo the photos when my north light gets better.

  7. These are wicked, Katherine (well everyone else has used my favourite adjectives!). The woman is beautiful and, with your beautiful hatching style, I could imagine her in pastel. I so admire your hatching and it's mean that it causes you pain.

  8. Hi Katherine,
    congratulations to this beautiful drawings..all your head studies have been highlights here.

  9. Thanks Martin and Robyn.

    Martin - the pain I've been experiencing is why I haven't been posting so many of these of late.

    Robyn - what it does now (if it isn't killing me after 15 minutes) is make me work in a much more focused way. Simpler really. No fussing.


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