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Figure Drawing with Susan Lyon

Artist Susan Lyon shares her figure drawing techniques in our Autumn Issue of the Strathmore Artist Papers Artist eNewsletter.

tl_files/content/blog/5 minute pose.jpg"I think that in order to get good at figure drawing you must try to draw from a model at least two to three times a week" explains Susan. "I currently do a quick sketch session once a week. I start off with one minute poses and work my way through progressively longer poses until, at the end of three hours, I finish with a 20 minute pose."

Following are some of the techniques and drawings Susan shares with us.


5 Minute Pose
I start off with a small piece of General's Chalk in sienna. I sand the rough edges down so I can use the side of it to mass in the shadow areas. Once I get the big masses in I clean up the light areas with a kneaded eraser, then use a pastel pencil to define a few lines.

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5 to 7 Minute Pose
I kept the left side out of focus because that is the shadow side and I don't want to show any details in the area. Sometimes I don't even use a line where the form on the light side of the figure meets the background; I will use it only if it's necessary.

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10 Minute Pose
I start off the same with shorter poses, I just study a little more and add in some lines with a pastel pencil.

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Shadow Study
I try hard to only see the form in light and dark shapes. I use a strong spot light so the shadows will be strong. I always start the drawings by massing in the darks.

Download the entire article Strathmore Artist Newsletter: Autumn 2011

Read original article: Figure Drawing with Susan Lyon


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