Sunday, 26 April 2015

Fear of Drawing Hands.

Michael Whynot. Hand study in red chalk.


Michael Whynot. Hand study in red chalk.


Michael Whynot. Hand study in red chalk.


Michael Whynot. Hand study in red chalk.


Michael Whynot. Hand study in red chalk.


Michael Whynot. Hand study in red chalk.


Michael Whynot. Hand study in red chalk.


One of the questions I hear, more than any other, is how do I draw hands? A lot of people harbour a deep fear of drawing hands. So much so, that many will avoid them altogether, hiding them behind something or cropping them off. Unfortunately, this is exactly the wrong way to learn anything.

Hands have a learnable structure, like any other form, albeit it somewhat more complex. Get a good anatomy book and study the skeletal structure; there is a wonderful sort of symmetry to the structure of the hand, and once you see it you will be able to place the parts with more precision.

Then you need to watch people's hands - a lot of people's hands. Watch them working, playing and resting. More than almost any other form, seeing the gesture in hands will mean the difference between a stiff, lifeless drawing and one that you can reach out and touch. When drawing hands, always start with the gesture.

You need to draw hands constantly to improve; your own hands, pictures of hands - take a whole life drawing session and just draw the hands. Make quick doodles, short studies, longer, carefully rendered studies. Eventually, you will loose your fear of them and they may actually become your favourite, expressive, body part to draw.