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Implied Line - What is Implied Line in Drawing


Definition: Implied line is created when the artist lifts the pen or pencil from the paper, continuing its direction of travel, and then applies pressure again and continues in the same direction. Across the gap in the line is the 'implied line', which the mind fills in the gaps. Implied line usually describes a subtle change of plane - for example, across the bridge of the nose or along the jaw in portrait drawing. A drawn line would suggest much to sharp an angle (as found along the edge of a box), but we want to suggest to the viewer that there is a change of plane there, so we use implied line.

Implied line works best across short distances. Sometimes lightly drawn broken lines - or even just a slight dash here or there - can be used to increase the strength of the implied line, especially across a longer distance.

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