Monday, July 18, 2005

2 – Avoiding symbols – “Draw what you see”

People like Betty Edwards (author of "Drawing on the right side of the brain") will tell you that in order to draw you have to forget the symbols and draw what you see. This is a great revelation for a beginner. Such simple words tell you so much. Drawing is much enhanced by such simple mantras:

Forget the symbols. See with your eye.

Forget sticks and circles. Watch each line. Copy each line. Forget that this is an arm, that this is a hand. How to draw hands? Are hands hard? Hands are not hard. Faces are not hard. Hands, faces, feet, eyebrows, are just lines standing there. Copy each line and in the end you’ll have a hand. But if you see at as a hand, you’ll just draw a symbol of it. So, forget the hand. See this line. See that line. Draw each one. The hand will surface by itself.

Kimon Nicolaïdes, in his excellent book, "The natural way to draw", will go much the same way (some critics of B. Edwards will say that her book is just Nicolaïdes techniques with a lot of pseudo-neurology B.S. added in – I disagree, but that’s another story). He will tell you to “touch” the model with your eye, to “see” not only with your eyes but with your five senses (in fact, mostly with a sort of tele-tactile sense– we’ll speak of this later, too). Again, he is telling you to forget symbols, and react directly to the image in front of you. There is always a translation, but it is no longer symbolic, conceptual – it is a physical translation, just as direct as the device that turns the pattern of grooves on a record into sound, though much more personal, unreliable, unpredictable. This is cybernetics with stochastic perturbations.

Before I speak of the third stage I think an exercise is in order. I’ll try to explain what “blind contour drawing” is before we proceed.


MaDi said...

Eu não sei desenhar, omwo.
Toda a vez que eu digo ao meu cérebro para ele dizer à minha mão desenhar o que os meus olhos vêem, ele não me obedece.

OMWO said...

É preciso desligar o processamento simbolico do nosso cerebro. Ha metodos para o fazer. Depois dizes se o exercicio que vou colocar na página funcionou contigo :)

OMWO said...

Olá MaDi,
agora já não tens desculpa. Vais fazer o exercício? Já lá está :)