Balance is a physical attribute each of us must possess. If a figure is drawn without balance, it irritates us subconsciously. Our instinct is to set firmly on its base anything that is wobbling and likely to fall. Watch how quickly a mother's hand grasps the teetering child. The observer recognizes quickly that a drawing is out of balance, and his inability to do anything about it sets up a negative response.
Balance is an equalized distribution of weight in tlie figure as in anything else. If we lean over to one side, an arm or leg is extended on the opposite side to' compensate for the unequal distribution of weight over the foot or two feet that are the central point of division for the line of balance. If we stand on one foot, the weight must be distributed much as it is in a spinning top. The figure will then fit into a triangle. If we stand on both feet, we make a square base for the weight, and the figure will then fit into a rectangle.
This should not be taken too literally sincc an arm or foot may emerge from the triangle or rectangle, but the division line through the middle of the triangle or rectangle will show that there is approximately a like amount of bulk on each side of it.
When you arc using a live model either for direct sketching or for camera shots, she will automatically keep in balance—she cannot help it. But in drawing action from the imagination balance must be watched carefully. It is easy to forget.
Before going into the problem of rhythm, the fundamentals of rendering must be taken into account. Suggestions for rendering technically in different mediums will appear throughout the rest of the book. Technique is an individual quality, and no one can positively state that a technical treatment popular or successful today will be so tomorrow. The fundamentals of rendering, however, are not so much concerned with how you put your strokes on paper or canvas as with correct values rendered intelligently for the specified reproduction and a clear conception of the use of tone and line in their proper place.
On page 132 arc two drawings that I believe will be self-explanatory. In the first, tone is subordinated to line; in the other, line is subordinated to tone. This gives you two jumping-ofl places. You can start a drawing with the definite plan of making it'cither a pure line drawing, a combination of line and tone (in which either can be subordinated to the other), or a purely tonal drawing like the one on page 133.1 suggest that you do not confine yourself to a single manner of approach and treat all your work in the same way. Try pen and ink, charcoal, line drawing with a brush, watereolor, or whatever you will. The broader you make your experience in different treatments and mediums, the wider your scope becomes as a practicing artist. If you are making a study, then decide first what you want most from that study. If it is values, then make a careful tonal drawing. If it is construction, line, proportion, or anatomy, work with these in mind. If it is a suggestion for a pose, the quick sketch is better than something labored over. The point is that you will have to labor when you want a detailed or tonal statement. You need not labor quite so hard to express a bit of action. If your client wants a sketch, see that it remains a sketch and that you will have something more in the way of finish to add to your final drawing.
WHEN THE. FIGURE STANDS ON ONE FOOT, THE MAIN WEIGHT IS DISTRIBUTED WITHIN A IF ON C30TH fEET^THEN WtTH IN
a rect£incl.t', about like the le.tter5
in and -fpi
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