Figure Drawing Friday, On Saturday

20 minute figure drawing. 18×24 Strathmore (medium texture) drawing paper and graphite.

I intended to post a figure drawing each Friday, but before I posted my first one I already missed my deadline. So, here’s the first Figure Drawing Friday, On Saturday. I’ve been figure drawing on and off for nearly 20 years. It’s an indispensable form of learning and practice but it requires consistency to give you the full benefit. If you don’t figure draw and you want to improve your art, start now. Don’t worry about not being great at it. Nobody is at first. It’s one of those things that takes tons of practice, but it will inform and improve all of your art. It’s worth it.

This is a 20-minute drawing. I used Strathmore medium surface drawing paper. I really prefer Strathmore’s smooth surface drawing paper but I didn’t have any this time. Most stores regularly stock the medium stuff. Whenever my local art store has the smooth stuff, I usually but two or three pads at a time. I took a figure drawing workshop with Henry Yan three years ago and he recommended both smooth newsprint and smooth drawing paper for use with charcoal — at least for the technique he teaches. I’ve preferred using the smooth stuff ever since. His book is amazing.

For graphite drawing I prefer to use a 5.6mm “Mechanical Hardmuth” lead holder from Koh-I-Noor. I have several different 6mm lead holders, but this one feels best in my hand and I like that it has sort of a classic vintage look. I use Gioconda 6B Artists’ Leads with it and love the fact that at that 5.6mm thickness it doesn’t break. When I use charcoal, I tend to use General’s 6B charcoal pencils and while they work really well, I often break them while drawing so I usually sharpen three or four before a session begins just in case.

Thanks for reading. Now, go draw. Hopefully, the next post will be on time.