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Blind Contour Drawing

A Classic Drawing Exercise

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blind contour drawing exercise

An example of Blind Contour Drawing

H South
What should it look like? - Blind Contour Drawing Examples

Blind Contour drawing is a favourite with drawing teachers to develop hand-eye communication. Contour drawing is essentially outline drawing, and blind contour drawing means drawing the outline of the subject without looking at the paper. The end result doesn't matter - what is important is carefully observing the subject.

I prefer to slightly stretch the meaning of 'contour' to include lines generally, so that from time to time the line will wander across the form and back out again, capturing little details along the way. In this exercise, avoid lifting the pencil from the paper so that the line is as continuous as possible, and most importantly, DON'T PEEK! If need be, work with your sketchbook under the table. If drawing on loose paper, you may need to tape it in place.

The Aim: Practice following contours with hand and eye.

What You Need: A4 sketch paper and pencil or pen.

What to Do:Now, just draw your hand! Place the pencil near the bottom of the page, then looking at the edge of the wrist, begin to follow the line, going very slowly and steadily. Try to make your pencil follow every slight curve and bump. When you get to a crease, follow it in then back out to the side and carry on. Don't rush. Concentrate on observing every little detail.

Review: When you've gone all around the hand, stop and look at the end results. Funny? But look how some areas of your drawing are amazingly accurate. Sure, the large areas might be out of proportion to each other, but you will notice that some parts are far better drawn than when you were looking at the paper!

Going Further:You can also try this exercise with other objects - leafy plants or furniture. People and animals can be pretty funny too, and it is great observational practice.

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