Copy a Complicated Drawing

When it comes to a complicated drawing with detail, proportion, and foreshortening, it can be much easier to copy the image upside down as forgers do, concentrating on the shapes and relationships rather than on the drawing itself, which can seem intimidatingly difficult. A complicated drawing can throw the logical left into complete revolt and send it packing. That's the idea behind this exercise—to see with the relational right.

Use these images to practice copying a drawing right side up and upside down.

Use these images to practice copying a drawing right side up and upside down.

1. Select one of the previous images above and copy it right side up.

2. Now, turn the same example image upside down.

3. Begin a new drawing of the upside-down image.

Here are some tips to try as you work on the upside-down image: Concentrate on the shapes, not the image. Don't try to draw the whole thing first and fill in the detail. Start where you can see a shape and draw it.

Think about lines. Which way do they go? Do they curve or stay straight? Where do they connect to other lines?

Where are the horizontals, the verticals? Which way do they go? Compare shapes rather than identify them. How do they relate to others? Work on one area at a time. You can cover most of the example drawing and only look at the part you are drawing.

Resist the temptation to see how you are doing or even think about it. Try not to think at all. Just look and draw what you see.

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