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Negative Space Drawing - How to Use Negative Space


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Negative Space Drawing - What is Negative Space?
Negative Space Drawing - How to Use Negative Space

An incorrect approach to negative space focuses on the form of the object while drawing.

In negative space drawing, instead of observing the positive shape of an object, you draw the shape of the space around the object. This may include any background detail or pattern, or it may be drawn as a simple silhouette. In many drawing books, you'll find an example which begins with drawing an outline of the object, and shading all around it. Although it is a silhouette, this is NOT correct negative space drawing. As you draw the outline, you are doing a POSITIVE drawing - focussing on the positive spaces - the solid shapes of the object.

The in-progress example below has been drawn that way, looking at the shape of each part of the object, and drawing its outline, then shading. This method will not help you achieve the objective of the negative space drawing exercise, which is to understand the shapes and spaces around an object.

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