WetCanvas
Home Member Services Content Areas Tools Info Center WC Partners Shop Help
Channels:
Search for:
in:

Welcome to the WetCanvas forums. You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions, articles and access our other FREE features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload your own photos and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please visit our help center.

Go Back   WetCanvas > Explore Media > Drawing and Sketching
User Name
Password
Register Mark Forums Read

Salute to our Partners
WC! Sponsors

Our Sponsors
Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1   Report Bad Post  
Old 07-31-2011, 01:59 PM
timeshadowed's Avatar
timeshadowed timeshadowed is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 182
 
Hails from United States
Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

I found the quote below in the Welcome Forum and since no one answered there, I thought I'd post the quote here since I have the same question. I just can't seem to 'get it' when it come to drawing cat fur.

Thanks

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=940280

Quote:
Originally Posted by Koolblue75
Hello! I am a newbie to the site and getting back into drawing and painting that I use to do in high school.

Maybe someone can point me in the right direction or give some advice. I really want to learn how to draw a realistic picture of my cat, first with drawing then one i have understood the main concept of drawing the cat, then I want to learn how to paint it using acrylic paint and then also in colored pencil with my prisma colored pencils.

I have looked all thru the website, but have not found any type of tutorial on how to draw, step by step, a cat. I did enjoy however doing the basic 101 classes for composition, i took them up to class 4 but didn't post any of my work, i know i should have, but with the shy butterflies and trying to figure out if im to scan the picture or just snap a picture with my mom's professional photographer camera...i just didn't know lol, remember im a newbie!

PLease forgive me if something like this does exist, and i have overlooked it.

I am inspired my mom to draw and paint, bc when she was in college she drew this beautiful, realistic picture of a cheetah in pencil, it looked like a picture from a camera, but she hand drew it! If she can draw that I know I can too.

Ok, im super excited, cause i can't wait to learn more on how to be a better artist! Thanks for listening, can't wait to hear from you guys!

Sincerely,

Koolblue75
__________________
TimeShadowed
http://timeshadowed.comlu.com/time_is_a_shadow.html

Last edited by timeshadowed : 07-31-2011 at 02:03 PM.
  #2   Report Bad Post  
Old 07-31-2011, 03:49 PM
gmarie's Avatar
gmarie gmarie is offline
A WC! Legend
A Californian! Coming Home Soon!
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 15,266
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

How 'bout looking in the Animals & Wildlife forum.
__________________

Gladys Marie "I'm somewhere...in the future...and I look much better than I look right now!" ...KIM CLEMENT
Too Much Of A Good Thing Is Wonderful!!! ...MAE WEST
*WETCANVAS MEMBER FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS THREAD*
  #3   Report Bad Post  
Old 07-31-2011, 03:52 PM
SparrowHawk7's Avatar
SparrowHawk7 SparrowHawk7 is offline
Moderator
Over your shoulder
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 17,661
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

I guess I could take a shot at it. I think there are many others who are far better at fur than I am, but perhaps I'll do in a pinch. First off I should mention that my techniques are at times against conventional wisdom in spite of the fact that there are really no hard and fast rules in art. But there are some things I consider to be rules about graphite itself and the ways we apply it and that has led me to develop the technique I use to draw fur.

Here's how I go about it. I place a tremendous amount of importance on eyes so I start with the right eye (I'm a righty) and move outward from there.



I find a grade of pencil that will allow me to get the right value for an area I want to draw. I do not like sharp pencils and you can see this at the edges - especially on the one on the right. I generally do not push very hard when I'm doing this because it is easy to damage the paper when drawing with tips - even dull ones. I also work in layers so I will go over and over an area time and again .. each layer is not very thick or dark but they add up to a pretty solid coverage. Usually I find the need to erase hairs throughout that area. I use a click/stick eraser. I cut the eraser off parallel to the tip so there is a sharp edge all around it. Holding it like a pencil I pull the edge of the eraser towards me - generally not pressing very hard. Remember there is a lot of graphite in layers down at this point so the eraser sometimes just skates along the slippery graphite without seeming to remove much graphite. This is actually good because it disturbs the graphite and does leave a track though it's very light. Some strokes will catch and erase to the base paper. When I'm done erasing I spend a fair amount of time cleaning up. My click eraser leaves a lot of debris and I want to get that up before I try to do more drawing. If I miss a piece, my pencil will grab it and roll it in graphite so it becomes a darker ball. This ball will usually stick to the drawing somewhere and I've found sometimes that they simply can not be removed ever - remaining a small, dark blob. First I will brush the drawing pretty aggressively with a 2" paint brush. Surprisingly my drawings don't seem to smudge very much. In this way I get most of the debris off the paper but there are always a few that won't budge. For these I use BluTack or my kneaded eraser. BluTack is slightly sticky which helps it remove the eraser bits. My kneaded eraser is nearly constantly in one hand when I draw so it is warm and slightly sticky itself as a result. Either work well but you want to get that debris off the paper.

Then I'll go back and re-tone all the hair - I rarely leave bare paper showing anywhere within my subject outside of the eyes or something in bright sunlight. I also "tuck" hairs back into the main hair mass by toning down at least one end of the line. This has basically added another visual layer. It may or may not be enough - sometimes I go back over an area 3-4 times in a row to get the hairs to appear to be the right length and the right overall value and 'feel'.

Another area that should be mentioned is where one marking/value meets another. These need to be soft and the illusion of hairs should feel continuous.



This shows what I mean about those edges. A surprising amount of information concerning expression is seen in the fur. Particularly important are the eyebrows - longer hairs above the eyes. Cassie is a fairly long haired callico - these were drawn the same way but made to be longer.



Notice how different areas of the head and body have differing length hairs - and differing textures of hair - some very fine and others more coarse. Most areas have at least 2 cycles - putting down graphite, erasing hairs, replacing graphite being one cycle. Don't let hairs get too parallel or the same length - it won't look right.

The last thing I do is add the whiskers. I do not worry about whiskers crossing areas I'm working on. Once I have the underlying texture done I will use my eraser to put in the whiskers. If I do not like the look of one that I do it is a simple thing to touchup the underlying texture thereby covering the erasure. And try it again. Remember the few finer long whiskers coming from above their eyes.

And just for the sake of completeness, the exact same techniques work well for human hair. The only differences are the length of the hair, the thickness of the scalp and the coarseness (beards as opposed to other hair). To do coarser hair simply push a bit harder with the eraser - it will make wider lines. Other than that it's the same process.



It takes a bit of practice to do and you may very well not want to get so detailed. But that's how I approach it so perhaps there was something in this of use.

Also check out our classroom .. there is a class on drawing fur.
__________________
Ken
  #4   Report Bad Post  
Old 07-31-2011, 05:44 PM
equinespirit's Avatar
equinespirit equinespirit is offline
A WetCanvas! Patron Saint
UK
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 3,109
 
Hails from United Kingdom
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

Hi and welcome

Great post from Ken already but I thought I would add this link which is to a demo on cat fur in coloured pencils, it gives you a good guide as to hair direction which can be difficult to distinguish on a photo sometimes;

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=398483
__________________
C&C appreciated!

www.sarahfoxfineart.co.uk
  #5   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-02-2011, 07:00 PM
timeshadowed's Avatar
timeshadowed timeshadowed is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 182
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

Thanks for the responses! I will keep trying to get something that I'm happy with.
__________________
TimeShadowed
http://timeshadowed.comlu.com/time_is_a_shadow.html
  #6   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-03-2011, 06:56 AM
brighteyes12's Avatar
brighteyes12 brighteyes12 is offline
Senior Member
Scotland, UK
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 409
 
Hails from Scotland
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

I was about to say if Ken comes along you'll get all the info you need, but he's already been and provided, it's the advice I'd use in drawing fur for sure

Lots of luck
Paula
__________________

My scribbles are here - http://pbird12.deviantart.com/
  #7   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-03-2011, 08:39 AM
timeshadowed's Avatar
timeshadowed timeshadowed is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 182
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

I just re-read my reply up-thread and it was not entirely clear that what I meant to say in that other response is that I hope to be able to DRAW something that I'm happy with. I just love the information in this thread given thus far! Thanks
__________________
TimeShadowed
http://timeshadowed.comlu.com/time_is_a_shadow.html
  #8   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-03-2011, 11:23 AM
katwalk katwalk is offline
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 546
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

Timeshadow

Best wishes for your cat drawing, but I wanted to add my 2 cents , if you are just starting to draw cats I would concentrate on getting the shape of the animal with correct positing of ears, eyes, nose, tail etc. then worry about drawing fur in detail. Course you may already have drawing the contour of the cat down pat, in which case ignore me.

Otherwise Photo realistic is nice, but I am not sure it is always the essence of "cat". I have seen some wonderful cat paintings that didn't go into that much detail.

Don't get me wrong I admire the photo realist work, but I think it isn't out of place to remind beginners esp. that it isn't the only way to draw. I was at an Artists Studio Monday night and we were chatting about Photo Realism, he mentioned that he had talked with an Instructor acquaintance once who said that if the artist hadn't put 30 hours into a drawing then the drawing wasn't worth anything - my friend replied that in that case none of Rembrandt's drawings are worthy of mention since he never spent a lot of time on his drawings.

If your goal is to draw photo realistically then go for it and this should be a good place to learn, but remember that drawing is a craft and has to be learned by repetition and effort so don't give up if your first efforts don't turn out the way you want them to. Also a good drawing doesn't have to be photo realistic.
__________________
Kathy
http://katwalkdesigns.blogspot.com/
  #9   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-03-2011, 07:30 PM
timeshadowed's Avatar
timeshadowed timeshadowed is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 182
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

Hi katwalk,

Thank you for your suggestions and comments. Since drawing shapes of any kind are also a problem for me, I have chosen to trace from photos. I have been trying to learn drawing since 2005 after a lifetime of being unable to do anything except 'stick men' drawings. It seems that no matter what route I choose to take, I still end up frustrated at my drawings because they still look like the work of a three year old child's scribbling. In fact, I'm sure that some three year-old's can do a better job than I'm doing.

Here is a past thread of mine that has some of my drawings of cats in.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=591754

I've done apples, peaches and tomatoes until I'm bored with them. I have had some success doing birds - see my past threads - but now I'm determined to learn the cat no matter how long it takes me. I know I have a long, long way to travel yet. I doubt that I will ever achieve photo realism, but I can still try.
__________________
TimeShadowed
http://timeshadowed.comlu.com/time_is_a_shadow.html

Last edited by timeshadowed : 08-03-2011 at 07:35 PM.
  #10   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-03-2011, 08:16 PM
SparrowHawk7's Avatar
SparrowHawk7 SparrowHawk7 is offline
Moderator
Over your shoulder
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 17,661
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

I think you might benefit from working with a grid, TS ... that way you will get a pretty close likeness initially. I wouldn't worry overly about the textures at first .. as katwalk said, focus on getting the overall shape correct and then add to that.
__________________
Ken
  #11   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-04-2011, 05:12 PM
antipodean antipodean is offline
Veteran Member
Auckland, NZ
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 643
 
Hails from New Zealand
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

Hi: I made a video on how to draw a cat using the grid method. It is posted on YouTube. The address is www.YouTube.com/pencilartnz. It might be of some use to you. Cheers Glen.
  #12   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-04-2011, 09:35 PM
timeshadowed's Avatar
timeshadowed timeshadowed is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 182
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

Thanks antipodean for posting that link, I'll have to watch it at the library as I'm still on slow-pokey dial-up.




Quote:
Originally Posted by antipodean
Hi: I made a video on how to draw a cat using the grid method. It is posted on YouTube. The address is www.YouTube.com/pencilartnz. It might be of some use to you. Cheers Glen.
__________________
TimeShadowed
http://timeshadowed.comlu.com/time_is_a_shadow.html
  #13   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-05-2011, 12:15 PM
katwalk katwalk is offline
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 546
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

TimeShadowed

Your reply to me sounded frustrated and a bit discouraged, which I am sorry to hear. I totally understand why you might be bored with fruit and veggies though they are a useful subject, and even now I enjoy drawing them occasionally

From a brief look at the link you sent me, I would say you aren't paying enough attention to negative spaces - that is the space around and between objects, or even features such as eyes. It almost appears that you aren't really looking at your reference, but drawing what you think you see.

As many others have mentioned drawing well is based on really looking at and "seeing" what you are drawing, which includes paying attention to the spaces around objects, the shapes and the tones.

It takes concentration, and allowing the hand and eye to work together without out a lot of distracting thoughts. If the thinking part of the brain is being overly busy you end up drawing what the brain thinks should be drawn, not what is really there. That is why people suggest you turn a picture upside down to draw it, that way the brain doesn't recognize the object and can't influence the lines you are drawing.

You do need to occasionally stop, step back and then do a visual check on progress, but learning to draw is really learning to see. I know so easy for me to say and it can be very hard to do. Though I think it is easier to learn when you are drawing real objects rather than from a photograph.

Using a grid can help you focus on just one section of a photo at a time, it isn't how I have learned to draw, but I know a lot of folks find the tool useful.

I don't suppose there are any local drawing classes you can take? Course it is critical to have a good instructor who can help you to see with some helpful hints and suggestions. A hyper critical instructor is no help at all, nor is one who ignores you - been there, it wasn't fun.

Good luck, and remember you are supposed to enjoy the process not just the end result.
__________________
Kathy
http://katwalkdesigns.blogspot.com/
  #14   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-05-2011, 06:12 PM
timeshadowed's Avatar
timeshadowed timeshadowed is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 182
 
Hails from United States
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

katwalk,

Thank you for your kind reply. You are right, I am getting very frustrated with trying to learn to draw because I do have a hand/eye/brain coordination problem. It rears its ugly head in such things as learning to play a musical instrument or learning to type well. But I refuse to give up on art. I enjoy the coloring process even though right now it does not turn out very well. That is why I trace my objects from photos, rather than draw them.

I hope that the following explains my dilemma:

Even though I 'see' what I need to be putting on paper, my hand refuses to draw the right lines. For example, I can look at a tree trunk shape and really know what I want the shape to be on paper, but my hand draws something totally different.

Another example is that of a square cube. Using a straight edge tool, my cube will end up being very misshapen even though I can clearly 'see' that the two objects do not look alike.

I am trying to use the grid method, but so far, it is only confusing me more. I'm so busy trying to look at the original picture grid and the blank one, that I loose track of which blank square I really want to use or what lines belong in them.

I do have the squares numbered and lettered, like this:

1 2 3 4 5 6

A - - - - - A

B - - - - - B

C - - - - - C

1 2 3 4 5 6

I will keep trying, maybe something will work.

Thanks
__________________
TimeShadowed
http://timeshadowed.comlu.com/time_is_a_shadow.html

Last edited by timeshadowed : 08-05-2011 at 06:21 PM.
  #15   Report Bad Post  
Old 08-05-2011, 06:33 PM
equinespirit's Avatar
equinespirit equinespirit is offline
A WetCanvas! Patron Saint
UK
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 3,109
 
Hails from United Kingdom
Re: Question: How To Draw Cat Fur

There is nothing wrong with tracing or even using a projector, if its good enough for Mike Sibley!

If I were you I would do two things, firstly I would carry on with the tracing , even with a tracing you still need to develop your eye so its not bypassing learning just helping you along.
I would also do sketches freehand and check them with your tracing and make alterations that way.
The grid method is another thing you can work on also.

Personally I find it easiest if there is a small area to work between so for example when I did Durers hands from the wekly drawing thread I traced the outline to make things quicker ( I never seem to finish these on time!) then worked my way in from each line I had to fill in the details.
You have to *really* look and try and see *every* detail that is there.
Try doing the hands, it gave me a headache but it was a really good exercise for me.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/show...=939258&page=4

I realise you probably only want to draw cats or something as I am the same but this kind of thing is a really useful exercise to learn to see and coordinate what you see into what goes on the paper.
Cats etc are more difficult from that POV as they are more blurry.
__________________
C&C appreciated!

www.sarahfoxfineart.co.uk

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:11 AM.


© 2014 F+W All rights reserved.