The picture above was a 20-minute drawing, with a hitch: the instructor made me restart halfway through, when I got to the head (always draw the head last!) and it was partially off the top of the page. Even my re-do barely skirted it; my trouble keeping everything on the page has been well-documented on this site, and was definitely my biggest problem today. The teacher offered a helpful idea: Draw a little thumbnail in the corner to get a sense of where to place the features on the page.
This was a 5-minute drawing (in most of the timed drawings, I never got around to the head). The idea was to block out the major structure in colored chalk, then add charcoal.
I should add, we were drawing with something called “vine charcoal,” which is pretty cool, because it wipes off the paper fairly cleanly, allowing you to quickly correct mistakes or start over.
This was probably my favorite exercise, I guess because it’s essentially animation. 5 30-second poses of an action, scribbled out in ink. Once again I ran out of space and had to draw the fifth pic very tiny, under the second.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering (or considering a class like this): trust me, you immediately forget that you’re looking at a naked person. I think it’s a limitation of our brains; you can’t concentrate on a skilled task and be all “homina homina” STAMP STAMP *wolf whistle* at the same time. The model puts on a robe between poses, so there’s definitely no casual gawking.