Life Drawing: Week 37 – Inverting negative space

By 18th December 2013 May 3rd, 2017 No Comments

Continuing from last week, I’m looking at less marks, and using negative space more in life drawing.

Perhaps this style is easier when the model has clothes, the sharp lines that fabric makes as they cut across the body, contrasting from one garment to the next, or against skin. Our studio is white with multiple light sources so it is pretty rare that we have stark contrasts.

Nonetheless, there are always dark areas to find. The eye sockets, often shaded by the brow, shadows cast by overlapping arms. And when they are not, artistic license replaces a white wall with a dark background to pronounce the silhouette of the body’s outline. I tried this a few times tonight perhaps working best, on the thirty minute pose where I defined triangle formed by the back and the resting arm on the right of the sketch. Black was nowhere to be seen in the pose, but by inverting this negative space, it did a great job showing how light other areas were.

Our model tonight was called Sophie.

Giving me guidance, my class tutor is Frank Gambino, trained as a graphic designer, however in recent years his main practise is in portraiture and figure studies. Frank’s studio is in Belsize Park, London, where he works on commissions and runs popular life drawing classes. However, conveniently for me, he is also running classes in East London, at the Tokarska Gallery.

The Tokarska Gallery, a contemporary art gallery run by emerging artist Nadiya Pavliv-Tokarska.

Visit Frank Gambino’s website
Tokarska Gallery

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