Mission Statement

The Rocky Mountain Society of Botanical Artists is an open and diverse group of artists, collectors and admirers who share a love for the practice and perpetuation of botanical art and illustration with a fond focus on plants in the Rocky Mountain Region.
We encourage and participate in educational outreach, juried and non-juried exhibits, lectures, workshops and regular chapter meetings. The RMSBA is proud to be the very first chapter affiliation of the international organization, the American Society of Botanical Artists.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Day 22 - A Drawing a Day

Drawing on the Masters
Make a drawing, begin it again, trace it; begin it again and trace it again.
Edgar Degas 

Guanaeo (wild llamas), graphite on paper, by Vanessa Martin. "Here is another sketch I made at a recent visit to the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. I recently joined a group of DBG artists who get together often and sketch/paint at the museum. We only sketch a few hours so we don't get bogged down in the details. In this sketch I really struggled with getting my proportions right. Trying different techniques of measurement, using my pencil and closing one eye I used the head measurement to base the rest of the body proportions. I was relatively successful but found I spent most of my time measuring. I am hoping to get to the point where my brain is trained to instinctively measure and I can spend more time just sketching. Thank you for letting me share." Thanks for sharing, Vanessa. I know we all struggle at times with finding the right proportions and using the best technique for that.
Knowing we all have our moments is such a support.
How About: Setting yourself the task of learning proportion. Draw a human figure, standing. Generally, a human body is 7 heads long, in addition to the head! See if yours fits that ratio. Work out the ratio of upper limbs to lower limbs, fingers to palms, toes to feet, etc. Leonardo da Vinci is famous for his study in ratios, the Vitruvian Man (below).
Repeat the exercise with another mammal, then a complex flower. It is said that you have to review 100 iterations of a given specimen to develop a "ratio" map, but just doing even a few trains your eye and hand to produce more accurate drawings. 
Click HERE for more information on ratios in art.

Click HERE to send your drawing scans to share.

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