ArtRage 5 Product PageArtRage Lite Product PageArtRage for iOS Product PageArtRage for Android Product PageArtRage  Android Oil Painter Free Product PageArtRage  Free Demos Page

Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 33

Thread: To Trace Or Not To Trace. Whether Tis More Practical To. . .

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    22,517

    To Trace Or Not To Trace. Whether Tis More Practical To. . .

    There are those, like myself, who appreciated the art done for those trifling girly pin-ups like Elvgren and Vargas and that lot. And it's always a treat to see into the working methods of really great technicians. So here's a video somebody put together showing side by side shots of the photo reference and the final pic. You can see where they got the models as close as they could and then did some things to lift it out of the realm of the mundane and place it squarely in the realm of idealized, fanciful celebrations of female allure in all kinds of settings -- like creating the best vacation scene ever. . . They used photos, yes they did. And they projected or traced, and also improved on the photos to bring it up to their levels of artistry.

    Have some fun. I sure did when I stumbled over this YouTube video.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRJAu_br7YM
    "Not a bit is wasted and the best is yet to come. . ." -- remembered from a dream

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    2,035
    Hi D Akey....These are something else....Huh! And I was silly enough to think he was just sitting in his studio alone and dreamin' up these models and scenes...
    Great stuff friend....
    Thanks and take care!
    I came across this link a couple of days ago when searching for Loomis stuff, It's a little easier to study...
    Gil Elvgren's Pinups:http://www.amusingplanet.com/2011/04...and-their.html

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    22,517
    Quote Originally Posted by stevemawmv View Post
    Hi D Akey....These are something else....Huh! And I was silly enough to think he was just sitting in his studio alone and dreamin' up these models and scenes...
    Great stuff friend....
    Thanks and take care!
    I came across this link a couple of days ago when searching for Loomis stuff, It's a little easier to study...
    Gil Elvgren's Pinups:http://www.amusingplanet.com/2011/04...and-their.html
    No, I'm sure you didn't think that. But a funny remark.

    I can't quite describe how much these finds are like little treasure hunts. I actually get giddy when I find something that was a blank spot and a question I had dangling for decades that never got answered to my satisfaction. It's a wonder and a joy to see the planning that went into these pictures since very little of this was available to see when I was practicing. Few and far between were the books on this subject when it could have done me a lot of good. Maybe there's someone else at the early stages of their artistic path who can really roll with knowing about all this fringy stuff early on in their journey.

    Anyway, I can see you are really loving it because your work shows it. I'm not at all surprised that you found that particular website since it's rather up your alley. Any time you want to post these finds, please do. I for one am always interested in art related stuff.

    Good one Steve!
    Last edited by D Akey; 09-02-2014 at 04:12 PM.
    "Not a bit is wasted and the best is yet to come. . ." -- remembered from a dream

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    864
    Giddiness is not allowed! To have the proper standing artists have to be somber and moody. It helps to cut off body parts to insure one's somberness. Talking funny and having a funky mustache will add to the grandeur. But giddy? No, can't have that. In this case though, an afternoon with those girls, a bottle of wine, and a pizza would bring on giddiness.

    There is a girl that works in my doctor's office, she's also on my friend list, absolutely the prettiest girl I've ever seen. Her eyes are hypnotic, I'd really like to paint them but I' not good enough yet. We have plane to go to Bermuda together, my wife said it's ok if I can come up with the money. Between the two of us we have 8 dollars so far. I'm old enough to be her dad but it's a nice plan. Nothing improper, mind you, I'd just like to have a week to look into those eyes. I figure while we sit in the shade with drink with little umbrellas in them my wife can make sand castles.

    Regarding tracing, I know it's commonly done but I just can't stop feeling like it's cheating. I used to do it every time for my first few drawings but now I try to do it as little as possible. I'll use a tracing image to put marks where eyes, ears, and important features then try not to use it again. This brings up an interesting question, for me at least. I'm curious to know where people start when drawing faces. I, for instance, start by blocking in the colors of the face then I do the eyes next. The eyes being in place and done properly give the drawing some life.

    EOR (End Of Rant)

    The last time I kept an open mind,
    my brain fell out and the dog grabbed it.
    Now it's full of dirt, toothmarks, and dog slobber.
    No more open minds or dogs for me.www.gms9810.com/

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    22,517
    Quote Originally Posted by Gms9810 View Post
    Giddiness is not allowed! To have the proper standing artists have to be somber and moody. It helps to cut off body parts to insure one's somberness. Talking funny and having a funky mustache will add to the grandeur. But giddy? No, can't have that. In this case though, an afternoon with those girls, a bottle of wine, and a pizza would bring on giddiness.

    There is a girl that works in my doctor's office, she's also on my friend list, absolutely the prettiest girl I've ever seen. Her eyes are hypnotic, I'd really like to paint them but I' not good enough yet. We have plane to go to Bermuda together, my wife said it's ok if I can come up with the money. Between the two of us we have 8 dollars so far. I'm old enough to be her dad but it's a nice plan. Nothing improper, mind you, I'd just like to have a week to look into those eyes. I figure while we sit in the shade with drink with little umbrellas in them my wife can make sand castles.

    Regarding tracing, I know it's commonly done but I just can't stop feeling like it's cheating. I used to do it every time for my first few drawings but now I try to do it as little as possible. I'll use a tracing image to put marks where eyes, ears, and important features then try not to use it again. This brings up an interesting question, for me at least. I'm curious to know where people start when drawing faces. I, for instance, start by blocking in the colors of the face then I do the eyes next. The eyes being in place and done properly give the drawing some life.

    EOR (End Of Rant)
    If your wife allows it, is tracing this young lady cheating?

    There are all approaches for all manner of styles and whatever works for the artist is legitimate if it serves the purpose. I mean, if man was meant to fly he would have been born with wings -- am I right?

    I'm just pointing out that those who say to never trace, not ever, not for anybody are giving people constraints with no context. There are people who are speaking as if they're strong-arming people away from a legit tool, for those who want to use it. For those who don't want to trace, that's more than cool as well. They both teach different things and have different times when it's most appropriate for the needs of the artist.

    Not tracing is great. No argument from me there. But so is tracing.

    As to where to begin -- lay in for structure is good. Then it's what you want to do. Eyes is a logical first step for me as well when doing a head but it's more about where the eyes are looking and how the head is angled as a result of that looking. I rarely do a straight on mug shot, though I did plenty of them when I was in school because that angle simplifies the structural deviations. (If you're doing a whole body, the head and spine is the main thing around which everything else works. And you get that right, then the rest has more of a chance to fall into place convincingly.) But when doing pictures, it's quite often a matter of movement or expressions, tilts and turns that speak.

    But I think where one gets to is where the whole process is outside considerations like which feature to do first, because ideally one holds the whole image in their head and it's a matter of putting in all the bits where they belong. The eyes are a good place to begin though. What I mean by that is drawing figures and heads is formulaic at the beginning of a picture and thus one is considering larger issues like the pose in a generic way, seeing the big picture first (as you mention in your lay in step).

    And that step would then move into deviations off that formula, like something about the model, or the drawing from imagination that stands apart in a big way, like a woman's hair style or if they are interacting with something like eating an ice cream cone. Then you would start breaking it down and focusing on the features -- the stuff that makes them distinct. So large to small is the most common way to approach it. But then flying fast and loose without structure or starting from a point and working out also has value in that it helps one break out of the formula and become more inventive when one is looking for a unique style. Do it differently and you have a different outcome. Aside from that, formulas are most professional for those who have to get in and out of a drawing in short order. Fine artists can do anything they want if they don't have to conform to realism.

    But structure first allows for making changes and not getting too lost, and the model can hold together in a safer way.

    The most important part of the drawing process for me is the lay in because that angle is going to tell me how everything else is to be placed. So if I have my lay in at a slightly different angle than the model, I always err on the side of the lay in and not try to superimpose the model's angle onto my drawing's angle. I only use the model as reference for fleshing out my drawing. But I usually try to get the model right. But when I vary it, I haven't lost my drawing. You can kind of see how the guys in these pin-up shots worked and modified the models' poses to suit. And there's one where the girl is seated with big wide open eyes, you can see how the artist stylized them, showing more lid and exaggerating the lashes and all that. That's a formula thing that he knew looked better than natural shots do. So he probably did eyes that way a lot and just applied that sensibility to that model.

    The other thing in working the big picture first is so that when you do get to putting in the detail, you know how much or how little will work in context with the rest of the figure or head. Anyway, those are some thoughts.
    Last edited by D Akey; 09-03-2014 at 05:40 AM.
    "Not a bit is wasted and the best is yet to come. . ." -- remembered from a dream

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    3,818
    What fun Mr Akey! And wonderful to see how they set up the original poses, and then did lift them out of realm of the mundane. Once upon a time, great classical artists ... Michelangelo and Da Vinci and the like, could afford to pay models, usually prostitutes and the like, who had to freeze into uncomfortable positions for hours.

    We pay our life models $30 per hour upwards, and they can only stay in the same position for 20 - 30 minutes.

    I started off drawing everything, and could easily, then for more involved stuff, I began to grid. Now that's tedious! Now, I do whatever floats my boat and achieves my end. It feels great to rough a painting in freehand, but it also feels good to have some starting points if you're are a realist. It's also easier if free-handing a landscape or still life that doesn't need a likeness.

    Years ago, I remember free-handing a steam train approaching, with all the machinery details required, for a very BIG painting. So I had perspective, and another photo reference of the carriages put in behind. That painting won an award, and I still have it, and sometimes think, "How did I do all that?"

    In my small world of teaching (sometimes), I often hear angst ridden people worrying about tracing or copying. Hell's bells, there's enough art of all kinds in the world for us not to get precious and purist and lecture others on how they create their pictures! Just get on and do it, and enjoy, I tell them!

    Anyways ... that's my opinion.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    864
    I've reached a medium, as little tracing as possible. As far as 'whatever works' I'm still thinking on that. Some uncool people could just import an image to a layer, then just add a few brush strokes and claim they painted it. I think anyone who does that should be stripped nekkid, coated with white gesso, forced to roll in a pile of every color paint there is, have a 5 gallon bucket of glitter poured over his or her head then dumped in some busy city park. They could technically call it art but it would be fake. I guess for the most part I see your point(s) and agree. It just seems to me that there is a lot of uncool things people can do and call it art. Although, now that I proofread this I think a nekkid multicolored person with shiny stuff all over the might indeed BE art.

    The last time I kept an open mind,
    my brain fell out and the dog grabbed it.
    Now it's full of dirt, toothmarks, and dog slobber.
    No more open minds or dogs for me.www.gms9810.com/

  8. #8
    Do what feels right.

    Our artistic forefathers were know to trace, and even hire other artists to do portions of the work on their masterpieces that they were no so good with.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    864
    Hmmmmm, I'll give you 5 bucks if you finish this 4 foot by 8 foot hyper realistic painting of Elvis for me. IF, you can paint on black velvet. Yeah, I know, it's a once in a lifetime chance. Take your time thinking it over. If the velvet is a problem I can go as high as $5.50.

    The last time I kept an open mind,
    my brain fell out and the dog grabbed it.
    Now it's full of dirt, toothmarks, and dog slobber.
    No more open minds or dogs for me.www.gms9810.com/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Huntsville, On., Canada
    Posts
    5,356
    Which ever way just have fun

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •