Sketch Warm Up

Sketching Calisthenics – Warm it up!

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Sketching warm ups are the best way to break that silence between your pen and paper.  It will help your brain visualize your next move and learn to build confident lines.  The technique shown here is most commonly taught at Art Center in Pasadena, and Scott Robertson being the biggest proponent.

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Ok, now what do I do.  Those lines were easy.  Oh, what if I curved the line?  Would that be easy…oh crap, no..not so easy.  Focus…its not that complicated…see the two ends, connect them by passing through the middle dot.  Yes, there you go, one gentle arch.  A clean sweep, like a fender or a cross section line…good.

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Alrigh Mr Facny guys…what now?  What…what if the curve got more complex, like offsets, insets and diving curves?  What if they were a 10 wheeled spherical vehicle that has lik…..Woh Woh Woh…..lets get back to the Warm up huh?  Ok good…so circles that live in perspective on 2 parallel plane, and complex curves.  Great job, now we are getting some where.

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Lets do this thing.  Time to kick it up a notch huh?  BAM…basic 2pt perspective out of nothing.  Start with the dot to dot exercise and call that the Horizon Line, Boom.  Draw a 90 degree perpendicular at the center of where you want your object to live, son-of-a-bing.  Strike the bottom line from perpendicual line to the right horizon line, son-of-a-bam.  Strike the same line but to the left horizon line, son-of–boom.  Now do the same for the front top of your box.  Finding the back points of your box will take some repetition (and there is a technical formula to find it), but eyeball it for now.  Whammy…you got a 2pt Box.

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Lets take a quick step back for a second during this warm up, to remember our long forgotton and skipped over way of viewing objects with our eyes.  1pt perspective.  Its highly valuable, and often more tricky (with complex objects, eye level, etc)…buts lets get this trick all warmed up, cause you never know out on that sketching battle field what type of ammo you will need.  Check out the crazy lines here, just pointing out the Horizon Line, how all points converge but are parallel on given and designated planes, and the key is that you land your perpendicular line (which grounds it all).   All lines running perpendicular are dead parallel.  And dont you forget it!

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Finally, lets practice really quickly…the trickery that is 1pt perspective.  Converging lines, parallel lines, floating planes that could come crashing down at any moment…ahhhhhh!  1pt is a highly valuable tool, so make sure you think about your object it more than just 2-3pt, get back to basics…it will give you a whole new perspective on things.

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    • Albert
    • June 15th, 2010

    nice explanation, when will a person get good command in sketch ? intensive training or just the control of hands ?
    can u explain how objects are seen from objects .. like if i see face its made of oval shape, triangle etc.., how all these are made into a good conceptual sketch that comes out of mind or by artist see imaginary thing on paper !

  1. Hi!
    Your way of writing is funny and great! Thanks for tutorial and inspiration!

    • Ben Bringardner
    • November 20th, 2011

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    Thanks

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