Saturday, 6 August 2016


I wanted to talk a bit about gesture.

Gesture in the figure is the fundamental design line in a figure, the action of the figure . Its the long axis that takes your eye  from one form to another. Steve huston says its the movement between the forms while 'structure' is the movement over the forms. When the drawing is kept simple its easier to have a strong gesture line but when the drawing is taken further with more detail rendering the gesture is usually lost and the drawing can become very stiff.  Great artists can capture a persons gesture in only a few lines and many artists say that its the single most important element in the drawing.

here are some examples of great gesture drawing from great artists.

As you can see by the arrows in the drawing above.  the gesture can follow the long curve of the contour of the figure. This is usually the stretched part of the figure. Try to emphasize the stretched areas of the figure with long confident lines.

you can also use the core shadows and highlights to accentuate the gesture.
In the following example by steve huston look how you follow the core shadows in a watery fluid way through the figure. This is a great example of a more rendered figure but with strong gesture. The highlights are also dynamic in taking your eye down and over the form. Even the cross hatching of the shadows take your eye through from one side to the other. 


 And here is an stunning example of a drawing by steve huston taken much further in terms of rendering but you can still see a strong gestural flow through the entire figure.. He has translated the figure into simple ideas. Although to simplify something is alot more difficult. than just coping it as you see it.

and here is one of mine i drew from a photograph.

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