Teach yourself – Shapes, Forms, Lights, Shadows, Textures, Depths…and other cool stuff.

I have been toying with the idea of writing some tutorials on drawing and how to use lights, shadows and textures to change your two-dimensional flat sketches into well-formed realistic drawings that have volume and depth.

A drawing has form when it convey depth, or in other words, looks three-dimensional. When a drawing presents only the outlines, it has a shape – and while the shape might be identifiable and extremely well-drawn, it keeps the drawing from conveying realism.

The problem that self-taught artists face is that they are very good at capturing the shapes, but not so great at establishing forms. The reason might lie in the fact that the play of lights and shadows must be learned through careful observation and analysis (where the light-source is, how different textures reflect lights, and so on,) and the self-taught artist draws mainly for the love of creating his own representation of what he sees. He wants to do it quickly and then move on the next drawing, and then the next.

I’ve been through the same grind, and I am still learning, but as I once noted, we all are learners situated at different points on the continuum of learning, and each of us has something to contribute to the learning of others. This is why I wrote “Evolution of a Caricaturist-How to Draw Caricatures?“, which has been performing rather well despite its infra-niche audience, and this is why I have started writing this series.

It begins with the basics. Here’s a rough outline, which might change as the series develops.

  • Shapes
  • Forms
  • Shapes vs. Forms
  • Lights
  • Shadows
  • Textures
  • Placement
  • Depth etc.

The History of Art posts will continue…though erratically, because I must write and teach and to teach through virtual sessions, I must practice a software.

Portrait Painting: US Senator John Boozman of the Republican Party – for the TBP Magazine.

This blog has usually brought you my caricatures and cartoons. However, before starting this blog, I had been mostly dedicated to portraiture. I believe that all other types of art, one must be reasonably adept at portraiture, because they hold the key to understanding proportions. Only when you know the rules, you become good at breaking them. Similarly, you must be good at understanding the correct proportions and placements of the human features, before you start exaggerating them.

Today, while rummaging through my old files (on the computer,) I came across two portraits that I did for the TBP magazine in 2016. One of Senator John Boozman and the other of William Conner Eldridge Jr. He is a member of the Democratic Party. For the  2016 U.S. Senate election in Arkansas, he was the nominee of the party, and that was how I came to paint his portrait.

Here’s the portrait of Senator John Boozman that appeared in the Jan-Feb 2016 issue of the TBP Magazine.

Conner Eldridge’s portrait soon 🙂

You can find the writer me at: http://instagram.com/shafalianand/

Taking a break from posts and inviting you over to my Instagram.

My dear blog readers,

While I come up with more caricatures, cartoons, portraits, drawings and other visual stuff to enchant you, why don’t you visit my instagram page and check out this writer-artist’s candid thoughts. (What? You thought that artists didn’t think?! Oh, we do…and we often think a lot more than you think we do!)

Please come visit me at: http://instagram.com/shafalianand

Shafali Anand's Instagram - Author - Evolution of a Caricaturist and Viral Sin

I’ll be back in a jiffy!