Basic 101: Class 22
Here at Basics 101, we are earnestly trying to cover every drawing subject possible. Someone asked me when this class was going to end and I said that the estimate projection and goal was to reach at least 40 classes. This class has moved faster then I could have imagined and congratulations for its success must go exclusively to you the participants. I have to say that I have been overwhelmed by your enthusiasm and your contributions have been amazing.
OK. Let’s talk about animals. You’ve seen them. You may have one. I have owned 8 cats, two birds, a turtle, a plethora of fish and a Shetland sheepdog. I have to say that the last one has been my favorite because he has turned into a real pal. Animals exist with us and we randomly invade each other’s space. They are furry, furless, slimy, rough, spiky and hairy (read pig for example). They are small, big, bigger, biggest (read elephant for example). Who wouldn’t love to pet a tiger or a bear. We love them but we know that they would, nothing personal, eat us or at the very least severely nip or rip us. We run from them, run to them, love them and eat them. It is a complex relationship that we have with the animal kingdom—a love/food chain, I guess.
You should not have a problem picking out an animal to draw. Did you know that there are over 12,000 plus varieties of animal in the world? I highly recommend that you grab your sketchbook and spend some quality time on your farm or with you pet or go to the zoo and check out the animals that are there. There are many many opportunities to sketch animals. Like children, they are hardly accommodating when it comes to poses so if you want to work from photographs that is certainly ok. But first, let’s simplify the animal body:
1. Without legs, neck and head, the bodies of most animals are twice as long as they are high.
2. You can divide an animal in to three basic parts: Forequarters, Belly, and Rear Quarters.
3. Carefully observe the stance of an animal—for example, Bears are pigeon toed. When a dog rids itself o waste its hind feet will splay outward.
4. Hoofed animals tend to be knock-kneed
5. You can also divide the animal head into three parts: The muzzle, the long part of the nose, and the base of the skull.
6. Animals are perfectly symmetrical. Use a centerline when constructing your animal. The head divides perfectly in the middle.
7. When drawing ears you can simplify the process by drawing an oval for the base of the ears.
8. For most animals, the eyes and the ears line up perfectly.
9. When drawing an animal in perspective—draw a cube in perspective, then draw the animal in the cube.
10. Note that animal legs are extremely pliable. They can double up and stretch out.
11. When an animal leaps, the rib cage will elongate into a stretched position.
12. Always break the animal down into basic shapes and then flesh out the rest of the animal. For example, A sphere for the head and two spheres for the body.
Below, I have several demonstrations of animal drawings. You may recognize all or some of them. I hope that these help.
Bailey 1: I think Shelties are beautiful but then again I love dogs-- period. I have worked the eyes and using a dull pencil, I have combined the direction of fur with layers of graphite glazed over the fur in small circular motions to help add texture where needed and to bring in a "approximation" of Baileys actual values.