As my artist's statement explains, my work is utterly incomprehensible and is therefore full of deep significance. -- Calvin and Hobbes

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

#3 Continous Line Contour Rhino; 31 Days of Rhinos

I can't see straight, which is good, cuz i can't draw straight either!

#3 Continuous Line Contour Rhino (or Abstract Ink Rhino); 31 Days of Rhinos
India Ink on Mat board

A little lighter subject matter today, this Rhino and Baby were drawn without lifting the pen from the paper. This technique is a called Continuous Contour Line Drawing. Contour drawing implies a shell or an outline of an object. When you practice contour line drawing, you will find drawing as a whole begin to become easier because you focus on the shapes you are drawing instead of trying to draw "a rhino" or "a car".

A couple of times, I noticed my hand lift up as I have not done this exercise in years, and I promptly placed it back where I had removed it and moved on. I also colored in slightly some areas while my pen was there, which is not necessarily something I would do normally, but what the hell! You also see the poor Mother has two left eyes. I could say I did this for the purely abstract nature of the drawing, but the truth is, I disobeyed a cardinal rule of drawing...I was covering up the picture with my hand and couldn't actually see where I had drawn the right eye, or that my eye was way tooooo high. At that moment in time, I was focused on how proud I was of not taking the damned pen off the page to see the illustration! And you know, I love the second eye now.

You can put down a quick watercolor or ink wash before you begin your drawing to make it more interesting, or if you are using waterproof inks, like India Ink, you can add a wash afterwards.

Well, if you aren't well practiced in sketching daily, or even if you are, this exercise is a very good one because it forces you to think of where your positive and negative spaces are and to consider the proportions of your composition before you begin.

This exercise is a great reminder to me that this needs to be among my daily practices. The benefit of doing one continuous contour line drawing per day: You will use your eraser less on your other sketches, and your speed and accuracy will increase, and that can only mean you are becoming a better artist!

One of my favorite types of contour line drawing is Blind Contour Drawing..that's where you look at your subject and not the paper you are drawing on!!! That spontaneous sketch creates some of the most remarkable art! You can't be a perfectionist, you can't be judgemental! You MUST release the need to criticize your work and just let it flow...relax!! It's fun!

Go try one of these types of contour line drawings yourself right now and post links on my facebook fan page or here in the comments!
Have fun and see you tomorrow!
(Btw, the Rhino image sketched from a pic found on Google)
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  1. Good work Becca.

  2. Hi, I love contour drawing. Your Rhinos are amazing. I tried to attached the link but it would not allow me to. It was a cow skull we drew during my drawing class that is a cross between contour and blind. We were to draw without looking at the paper except when we came to the end of a line then we could peek to see where we were at then look away until the next peek.

  3. I love both of those types of drawings and I haven't thought about them in years. Makes me want to go and get out the ink and do some contour and, expecially, blind contour drawings *winks* Love the one you did!

  4. Love this! I haven't done one of these drawings since my school days. I'm adding this to the EBSQ Friday Five. :D

  5. Rebecca, I am finding you everywhere, and full of......information too!!

    I love this sketch and this blog!


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