Thursday, May 26, 2005
Foreshortening and Golden Retrievers
Click to enlarge
What could this be about you ask? Well in the past two days the two subjects have come up separately on Laura's blog. So I thought I would combine the two and do a sketch of my dog Dusty using foreshortening as a main ingredient. As you can see from the humongous nose, I was right in his face. His nose just a few inches away from me. This is a common pose for us when I have a treat and he's patiently waiting for it.
Here is my thought on foreshortening: There is no such thing.
OK, let me explain. When I am drawing or painting something in a representational way (non-abstract) I try to completely focus on the shapes of color and value in front me, and how they all relate to each other. All of this is in an effort to disassociate any "labels" in my mind from my subject. Such as this is the eye, this is the ear, and so on. It's called "Right Brain" thinking. For more on the subject read "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain" by Betty Edwards. (and no, I'm not her agent)
Using a term like "foreshortening" in your mind while you are drawing is just another hook into the left-brained world of labels and symbols for things. In the end, my drawing has the same effect, I just didn't think of it as foreshortening while I was doing it. I just compared distances between shapes I see in the drawing of Dusty's face to his actual face while I'm drawing it.
Now if you will excuse me, I'll try not to trip on the way down from my soap box. :o)