Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Gents

I've said it before and I'll say it again: I don't draw men very well. Give me ladies, babies, children, animals, flowers, cars, buildings, anything else; if I can see it, I can draw it. Except men. Their bodies come out awkward and they look like they're wearing lipstick. Nonetheless, I thought it might be amusing to see some of my past attempts to sketch the, shall we say, less fair sex...

Here we have one of my rare male sketches that actually came out well. In 1977, Beau Bridges starred with Jane Seymour in a TV movie called The Four Feathers. There was a picture of Beau Bridges in the TV Guide to advertise the show, and I thought he was incredibly handsome. So of course I had to draw him!

I generally try to avoid drawing men altogether. However, in my junior year of high school I took a fashion design class with a chubby young teacher, fresh out of college, named Miss Laws. All the fashions we created in her class were based on historical periods. Mercifully, most of our assignments involved designing for ladies and children.

However, there were these four unfortunate assignments that produced male fashion catastrophes. Try not to laugh too loud--you might alarm your neighbors! From spring 1971, this little number was based on styles of the 17th Century. I actually think it might have been a big hit as a costume for one of the singing groups of my high school years, like Paul Revere and the Raiders! Don't you love those thick sideburns? This assignment also included using pen and ink, but most of our work was simple pencil sketches.

Also from spring 1971, this suit represents the 18th Century. To me it seems Irish in style. I rather liked this one at the time, and so did Miss Laws. The fashions she liked best were taped up on the classroom wall--hence the little dark squares that stained the paper over the years. Someday maybe I'll buy and learn how to use one of those art software programs and remove those stains.

Again, from spring 1971: Based on 16th Century styles, this evening suit has a very odd cape/jacket trimmed with fur. I think my boyfriend at that time had a pair of brogue shoes like this guy's! Obviously Miss Laws liked this one, too, judging by the tape stains.
And finally, this outfit, which I drew in December 1970, was inspired by 16th Century fashions. But those striped pants are so very 1970s! After looking these over, I think one of the problems was I gave the men narrow, sloping shoulders, which doesn't look very manly. Note to self: in future male sketches, remember the broad shoulders!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Baby Love

I love babies! Always have. So naturally I drew quite a few of them over the years. Here they are for your enjoyment. I hope.

Baby in knitted sweater.

How does a tulip taste?

Gotta crawl 'cause I gotta have it!

Sailor suit baby.

Bright eyes at bath time.

Laughing baby.

The baby in this one is awfully cute, but her mom is a little bit scary!
(The baby actually looks like my sister Karla as an infant.)

This is a rough sketch I did while in high school.

For a while I toyed with the idea of designing baby announcements, but this is the only one I actually attempted. I think it came out kinda cute!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Head Shots

Here they are, the last of my "heroine" sketches. Don't worry, there are plenty more sketches of females to post here in the future, but they mostly come from my fashion design classes in high school, as well as my own post-high school fashion attempts. However, after this post I think we'll take a break from the ladies for awhile and look at some different types of sketches and some different mediums.
When I draw people I mostly go for the whole figure, but this batch is a set of simple headshots. These were my attempts to capture the subjects' emotions in their faces.

This is mysterious Willa. I wonder what has her so spooked.

Here is socialite Ariadne. Doesn't she make you feel you aren't quite upper-class enough to attend her big, fancy event?

Dark-eyed Camilla is exotically beautiful but she seems to be harboring dark secrets. She doesn't quite meet your eyes. I'd like the secret of where she got that great blouse!

The rest of these ladies haven't been given names, but I identify them by their expressions. This one is the Dancer. I see her in a colorful, full skirt and high-heeled tap shoes, clapping her hands to a Latino beat while she spins around the room.

This one is Innocent. She seems sweet, but very naive and uncertain about the world around her.

Here we have Wistful. She has dreams and yearnings, but little hope they will ever come true. I know how she feels! (I think she may also have a little head cold, because her nose seems slightly red!)

This lady is Suspicious. Her sidelong glance seems distrustful of someone or something. She wants to believe and be happy, but perhaps experience has taught her not to get too comfortable.

And, finally, here we have Elegant. She is beautiful and poised, with the training that gives her self-assurance, but she's also a little cool, a little distant.

Going through all these old sketches has inspired me. I haven't done much drawing for many, many years, but the urge has found me again. I bought myself a new sketch pad, sketching pencils, and a gum eraser and completed my first sketch last weekend. I'm pretty well pleased with my first attempt and I'm already working on a second. When I've completed a few, I'll post them here, but for now we'll continue with the ancient sketches from my youth--you know, back in the dark ages before DVD players, calculators, microwave ovens, satellite dishes, cell phones, and video game systems!