Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Seeing the "Lines" that Make Art Come to Life.

There are lines all around us.

It is pretty amazing that just a few lines scratched onto paper can seem to tell a story.

What do you see in these simple stick figures:

Vertical lines (up and down) often give the feel of stability, strength, grandeur
like a forest of tall trees, skyscrapers, or a soldier standing at attention.

Horizontal lines give the feel of peacefulness and calm
like a sunset or a lake or a bed.

Diagonal lines can give the feel of movement, action, liveliness.

(Of course, this isn't always the case, but it seems to often be this way).

Here is some live examples of diagonal lines showing action.

I decided to sketch this one.

I find that starting with a stick figure can be helpful in getting the lines right.

Once I got the lines the way I wanted, I started adding form to the body as well as the clothing.

I then etched in some of the features of the face, noticing that only one eye is visible...

and even that is just a simple line of lashes.

The nose is two little dots at the end of a curved line
and the lips are a smudged line with a slight cheek curve at the edge.

Her dress has obvious shaded areas,
like a triangular shaped area that covers nearly the whole front of her dress.

Squinting and lightly rubbing my pencil on the areas of the skin that looked shaded helped to finish the sketch.

See if you notice the lines of things around you and if they give you certain feelings.
Then take up a pencil and draw something that catches your eye.

Thanks for stopping by!

This is part of my free art lesson series each week.
To see the full list of art lessons, click <HERE<.

(I now have a facebook page.  If you would like to share your own artwork you are working on, I would love to see it.  Please, just remember that my blog is also for children who want to use the art lessons (and I would LOVE if you want to help them share theirs as well), so please share artwork that is family friendly content.  Thanks so much.)

Sharing this post at:
Newlifeonahomestead: Homestead-barn-hop 
Bystephanielynn: Sunday-showcase-party


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you. My model loves to dance and spin for me. :)

  2. What a great blog you have, with such a lot of inspiring ideas.

  3. You are a great teacher! Thank you for the lessons~

    1. Thank you, Susan, for your encouraging comments. :)

  4. You make it look so easy! I always wanted to take art in school but couldn't. I am looking forward to your posts. Thank you for "listening" to your call to share. I don't have a blog, but will be following by email.


Thanks for your thoughts! If you have a question, I'll try to answer it.