Discuss art techniques and styles here. If you need tips or have any questions about artistic style or want to show people some new skills, this is the place.
- Chief Executive Officer
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I've noticed several posts over the last few days asking why an artist would want to use construction lineswhile drawing. The assumption seems to be that these lines restrict an artist's ability and mask or water-down his style. This is a rather wrong-headed assumption, for several reasons:
First, consistency. Constructing a skeleton allows you to keep your characters the same shape no matter what angle you draw them from, which makes them instantly more recognisable. Next, the shape itself. Just as a human skeleton defines the shape of your body, so the construction lines give you the shape of your character. Finally, there's neatness. You will find that your drawing becomes much more bold and confident when you have a structure underneath to draw it on.
Notice that I haven't once mentioned an artistic style here. These general rules apply to all art to a greater or lesser degree, from animé to portrait painting.
Now, I'd like to leave this thread open to others who have more artistic experience than me and are able to explain these concepts in more detail. If you have any comments, please don't hesitate to post them.
Our choicest plans have fallen through, our airiest castles tumbled over, because of lines we neatly drew and later neatly stumbled over.
— Piet Hein - Grooks
- Sub Lt
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well, I've less artistic experience, but I've got to post to say I agree. Drawing with construction lines is a big help. I myself usually end up doing a freehand sketchfirst (i.e. no form beyond that which I naturally come up with), then use that to guide where I put my spheres and cylinders and so on (and change any bits which become patently impossible using this method, as they're obviously wrong
). It does help - and it forces you to think in three dimensions, which helps a lot when colouring.
"The way to succeed is to get born at the right time and in the right place. If you can do that then you are bound to succeed. You have to be receptive and have some talent as well."
- Sydney Brenner
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When I learned something in my art classes in school, then it is to use some construction lines. I can't draw people, animals or whatever at all, but as you might have seen, know perspective and the like quite well. And as Graham stated, it won't water-down your work at all, but rather help you to make your drawings even better. There is no need for constructing every single line, but a few guiding lines can't hurt.