Drawing Basics

 

Lesson Info

Drawing Supplies Exercise: Draw Spoons

Now that you've tried drawing with just a regular pencil, you all got something pretty good, it looks like. Let's get out some artist pencils. Makes it just a little bit more complicated. So we have a variety of these and they all have these numbers on the end. 2H, 6B, HB, 2B, 4B, B. Let's put them in order of hard, to soft. The H, it's actually some word, that doesn't stand for hard, but we call it H for hard. The higher the number, the harder it is. So our hardest one we have is going to be a 2H. Then the next one in the line of pencils, the next one that comes around is going to be an H, and then there's going to be an F, which I kind of think stands for fine. I don't know what it stands for. And then you're going to get your HB. Your HB is the one that generally fits, your regular old yellow pencil, or number two, sometimes they call it number two pencil. Then you get your B, and that's getting a little softer, and your 2B, and your 4B, and your 6B and they you go up to 8B and you ...

can get a whole lot more variety but I you really, I don't think you need any more than that. So, how you learn about these. Make a chart, try it out! Don't ask someone all the details about 'em and talk yourself out of it. Just have a few pencils, make a chart and try and wear out your pencils. (pencils rattling) Starting with the 2H, grab anything around you, a really simple shape. We're gonna do spoons. I think you might all have a spoon. I'm using a tarnished spoon. But if you don't want a spoon, whatever, just as long as it's simple. I'm using a really tarnished spoon because it's a little bit easier to see the shading on it. So I can't see myself in the spoon. I can't see all these lights up here. I do have quite a few dots on it, but if your spoon is not tarnished, you could spray paint it, just like some gray primer spray paint. You could spray hair spray on it. That'll take the sheen down a little bit. That is, if you're getting really distracted by all these different shiny lines on it. So we've tried tracing, where we just put it down and drew around it. And if you feel like you need to do that, you can. But I think maybe we're ready to move on. I'm gonna just set this down here. Let me get a piece of white paper. Oh here's one. I'm gonna get another piece of paper here, so I can set my spoon on it to see what we're doing. Just set it nearby. And okay, choose whatever line quality you want. I'm gonna say, maybe kind of like this doodle pressure, because we're not too particular, actually in the shape. We just wanna try out our pencil. So I'm starting with one of the harder ones. I'm gonna do a 2H. Okay, this comes down like that. I have a little bit of sketch on my paper just so I can keep enough room to show you guys, but you don't need any if you don't want to. Okay, comes down here. And alright, I don't like those little lines around there. People have a tendency to tell beginning students not to use an eraser. I use an eraser all the time. 'Cause I like to really see where my drawing should go, and if I don't like it, I wanna be able to get rid of it. If you are a beginning student and you find yourself using it too much and getting all hung up on not being able to carry on, then don't use it. That's when an art teacher is going to tell you to start drawing with a big Sharpie marker and no eraser, so you can just get used to just drawing and leaving it. (laughter) But it doesn't seem like any of you are having that problem. But if you find yourself going, "Oh God, "that's not right!", better erase it. Okay, I'm gonna try again. Oh, not right, (mumbles) erase it. If you erase like that same spot more than like three times, then just stop using your eraser. Okay, so I'm gonna chicken scratch in here, just while I try and find my line, where I think it's gonna go. It's lighter at the end. Okay, then I have this nice little parallel band in mind. I don't want too much decoration. If you do have like a big swirly, curly pattern on the end of your spoon, and it's not really your style and you don't like it, you should make up your own pattern, your own style, or just draw a big scribble or a leaf or something, 'cause that's your artistic license. You don't have to keep that pattern that happens to be my grandmother's old china (laughs) that you're using, or her old silver. I just wanna find something really tarnished. Okay, parallel line in here. My pencil is not getting dull, is it? It's staying very sharp and very hard, and I'm trying to do that technique where I push down heavy and pull up light, and not much is happening. So why would I wanna use this pencil? Well, my first reason I use this pencil, is when I'm measuring paper, and I want a very fine line 'cause I'm gonna cut it, and I wanna know exactly where my measurement was. It's not a big old thick fuzzy line. I picked my hardest, finest pencil. Another time we're gonna use this, is when it comes up to do our tracing and our transferring. When we're transferring a drawing, you know, transfer the finest line that we can, we're gonna get out hardest pencil. I've kind of see how I can draw a plain line with it. Let's try some shading. Let's see, I've got a bunch of lights in this room, so I have all kinds of highlights. I'm going to circle a few of 'em, 'cause that would look weird, if all of my spoons happen to be in the film studio with all kinds of light on 'em (laughs). So there, there's a few things I circled. Those are gonna be my highlights. And I also think that's one too. Yeah, change the environment of your drawings too. You don't have to always be drawing in your living room couch or wherever. You can change your light to look like you're drawing outside somewhere nice. So now I'm using the edge of my pencil. Let's see how dark I can get it. That's pretty dark. Ooh, that gets really dark. It gets really wiggly though in there when I'm pressing hard. But none of them have broken the lead. I'm gonna squint my eyes and find the darkest part, that's in the bottom of the bowl. Okay, well that does get pretty dark. (pencil scraping) Seems like it. Just wait. Okay, and I think it's dark around here. (pencil scraping) And I think I'm gonna try and draw a little bit of this shadow. It's kind of neat, because it goes up here, and then makes the pencil look, kind of spoon have some three-dimension to it. It's kind of this weird wiggly thing. Okay, so it's pretty light. It's pretty hard. Having broken my lead, that's about what I think I can do with a 2H pencil. Try the next one, HB. So the pencil you started with, was the hardest-- Yes. Lead in the group that you're working with, correct. Okay, great. So now, since I'm drawing the same thing again, that's a good way to really compare what you're drawing. Alrighty, I can tell it's making a little bit of a smoother, darker line. Now I'm drawing this on Bristol board, or it's Bristol paper. This does come in a heavy board as well, that doesn't bend. So think about all the possibilities for marking a chart and trying out your supplies. and all that practice you're gonna get in drawing when you do that. What if you tried every type of pencil you had on every type of paper you had. Exponentially you would get so many spoon drawings and you would get so good at drawing spoons (laughs) and you'd really learn a lot about your materials. Hey, we're gonna do a little shading there, circle my highlights a little. So that's looking a little darker. It's not looking tremendously different, but I can feel it's a little softer and a little smoother. Kind of if I'm gonna do like some squiggles or crosshatching. I feel like it fills in a little bit more. Like, try blending it too with your finger or your blending stick, and see how that goes. Just experiment all over this. The good thing about drawing things when you're making your charts and experimenting, you could also do it in drawing little rectangles and experiment, but this way, you get your drawing practice in and you really see how they're used. You can kind of understand it here, but you don't really get the hang of how you would use it, on the actual object. Okay. Just keep going along, trying everything, all your different lines, all your different shadings with each pencil. And I'm gonna move on, to share. 'Cause I'm really fast at drawing. I did my B, got a little harder, my 2B, my 4B. Now let's see what happens when I do my 6B. 6B, if you look at it, really close up, where's my 2H, like the lead itself, is even wider and thicker. I'm gonna sharpen it. (grinding) It wears down really fast. So see how, let me (mumbles). (grinding) See how this, the lead, itself, is a lot wider. So when you sharpen it, it looks longer like that. Let's see what it does. Let's draw my spoon again. Oh, it feels very soft. I'm not pressing very hard, and I'm already worried I'm gonna break it. But it's drawing very darkly for how much I'm pressing. I had to like really dig in hard to get that darkness, and here I'm not pressing too much. Okay, save some highlights. Squint my eyes. Let's see where is my darkest spot? Right here, let's scrub it and see. Ooh, that's pretty dark. Feels really (mumbles). (pencil scraping) Okay. Try blending it. Ooh, yeah, but blend that really nicely too. So when would I use this one? I would use this if I'm like doing a big free drawing, that maybe the drawing with the pencil is the end result, and I'm just gonna save that drawing and hang it up like this. I would probably use this. If I'm doing a drawing that I'm gonna use some painting over the top of it, not so much. Because this graphite is gonna lift (mumbles) and mix with my paints and change the color of my paints. Okay, let's see what happens when we draw on this side. Because is so long and wide, it like makes a very wide shadow. Look at how wide that gets. That's pretty cool. You can really adjust it, to make it thinner and thicker just by the angle of your pencil. I'm think I'm gettin' the hang of that more now. So if you can choose if you want, these thin lines or these big wide, soft swats of color. Cleo, could I ask, would you be kind enough just to drawing them up there, could you do a quick recap for us, of just when a beginner might use those various pencils, starting with the hardest on the left side? Okay, I think you would use this, mostly just as a tool for if you're measuring some stuff, drawing along the edge of a ruler, and you want a nice fine line. You would use it during our transferring technique. You're gonna for sure use it then. I don't know that you really need to draw with it too much, unless you really, really wanna see the marks you make, because it doesn't blend very well. HB, that's like your normal pencil. I use this one a lot. And I find that on the different papers, like on the watercolor paper, it gets really smudgy, but on the printer paper, it actually draws more like a fine pencil. And it also matters what I have underneath the printer paper. If I have one sheet on the clipboard, it's gonna be very hard, it's gonna be different. If I have a whole stack of sheets, it's gonna get softer. The B, if I was drawing with an HB and I want to have a spot that just wasn't dark enough, I'd come in with that, and the same with a 2B. The 4B and the 6B, I use those like I was saying if I know for sure, I'm gonna do just like a big artistic pencil drawing and that where I'm gonna stop. So I want it to be bold. I'm gonna hang it on the wall. I'm not gonna add any paint to it. Probably not gonna scan it, put it in my scanner, 'cause that dust is gonna come off. Maybe I wanna do a lot of smudging and get some really fine detailed shading. That's when I use the four and the 6B. Okay. So I think we've done enough practicing and tracing. Let's see if we can move on to looking at something in drawing. I'm gonna draw this trophy. So, the first thing I do when I draw this, this time I'm gonna make sure I put my clip up at the top, 'cause I had it at the bottom before, and it was kind of in my way. I also think I might tape this down. So I'm gonna move my board around quite a bit, and I don't want it to, don't want my paper to come off. Cleo, if I could ask you a quick question-- while you're typing that in-- Yes. Elizabeth from our online audience, she's curious, when do you know to sharpen your pencil? So if I made that sharp little mark up at the beginning, and I'm not able to make that mark again if I want to, sharpen your pencil. I like to always be able to make a sharp mark if I want to, and then I can draw it on the side. I only use a dull pencil, when I'm really coming in some very dark areas, and I just wanna get like really smudgy. But I like to have that ability to go fine, if I want to-- Great And don't if I want to.


Do you want to learn how to draw but don't know where to start? In this class, professional painter & illustrator Cleo Papanikolas shares fun, beginner-friendly drawing techniques that can turn anyone into an artist. This class will help you overcome your fear of the blank page and focus on putting pencil to paper so you can draw the way you always wished you could.

In this class, Cleo will cover the fundamentals in drawing including:
  • Using different pencils for line quality
  • Applying different shading methods
  • Practice measurement and proportions in your work 
Cleo will help you embrace imperfections in your work with step-by-step exercises that apply key drawing techniques. 

Join Cleo and get started drawing today! 

 
 
 
 

Reviews

  • This class is about two hours long. Overall it is a friendly and accessible approach to introducing some basic drawing techniques and tools that is appropriate for those who are nervous about or just novice to drawing. It lets the student jump in by tracing a basic outline which is then detailed. Towards the end the instructor demonstrates a more advanced type of tracing using a tablet as a lightpad, and there is also helpful information on how to trace one's own work to transfer it to better paper or slightly alter the drawing to be larger/wider/etc. The middle portion has overview information on types of lines and methods of shading. These aren't super thorough examinations of those topics, but should be ample to complete the exercises and drawings included and recommended in the class. Likewise, the overview of drawing tools and papers is an overview, but strikes a good balance between overwhelming with too much information, and giving students enough info to know what tools they need for basic drawing and how to use them. There is a brief overview of how to use the sight size method to draw freehand more accurately. This is a subject that could easily be an entire class topic on its own. Some will find this enough info to get going, others might prefer expanded information and more details on this. The more complex subject of ellipses in perspective is touched on only briefly. (Perspective is also a complex subject that needs a whole class of its own, so this is understandable.) In contrast to some other reviewers, I did not have a lot of issues with the filming and camera angles. A lot of time was spent on the angle of looking at the drawing in action. However, it is clear that material was edited out from the live version. The edited version doesn't follow the drawing of every exercise through to its conclusion, and sometimes segments end or start abruptly.
  • I like it. it's not very in-depth but it gave me the courage to start drawing, and I had so much fun. Great for beginners.
  • Definitely different from any other drawing class I've taken. Suggestions: 1. When the instructor is drawing, I would have liked the camera to say on the drawing. 2. The instructor should be more prepared. It seemed that she had to refer to her notes far to often, 3. When paying for this class, I did not know that the videos would not be complete. They end at point where it is clear that the instructor is continuing on, but I don't get to see the remainder. There are better, free and paid, drawing courses available online.