Drawing Asymmetrical Objects

You can use your sketching technique on just about anything now, so scout out some appealing objects from around your home that are not symmetrical.

It's important to work with your small sketchbook (6" x 8" or 8" x 10") now, because on large surfaces, beginners tend to attempt large, time-consuming pieces; the size of the paper seems to call up the "big project," requiring lots of time and diligence. But remember, sketching calls for setting down quick impressions.

After you've collected some interesting, irregular/asymmetrical objects, how should you begin to sketch them?

wrapping it up

Have you ever received a present wrapped without benefit of a box? Sometimes, but just barely, you can guess what it is. The wrapping usually doesn't reveal any texture or detail.

What if you had to gift wrap each item you've collected individually? What would they look like? Imagine how the wrapping paper would drape over any given shape. Would the contour lines look curved, or all sharply angled? A little of both, depending on what it was draped over, right?

You don't have to see geometric shapes in everything. The idea is to generalize the shape you see in order to begin sketching it. If it translates into a triangular sort of shape, then you've got a handle on something. However, most of the time you'll find a general no-name shape to begin with, because that's the way the organic world happens to look.

exercise: sketching irregular forms

1 Describe the outside shape generally with as few lines as needed to characterize the basic shape, leaving out details, as though the items were within wrapping paper.

2 Look for basic shapes inside the contour. For instance, if you wrapped a tree, some major branches.

3 Develop the contour more now, using smaller broken lines. Give them more specific character.

4 Add a few significant details—as many as needed to suggest the rest without losing the original, informal quality of a sketch. The searching lines of sketching help to give your work movement and interest, so don't censor those searching lines.

How Draw Asimetric
Begin your sketch by characterizing the overall shape of your subject with a gesture of your hand. Then develop the contour with a few loose directional lines to create your basic shape.

Drawing Asymmetrical Objects directional lines

It's easy to get disoriented on a winding path, whether it occurs on your drawing paper or in the woods. Always try to keep the "bigger picture" in mind when drawing its smaller parts. Directional lines are a great tool to help you strengthen your visual compass relative to the entire page, and within the object you're drawing. Breaking complex shapes into smaller, straightish lines also allows you to block them in generally, before putting in curves or detail. So, when drawing wavy, flowing, or rounded shapes:

• Adapt the wrapping-paper approach to get a general idea where the path is leading and what the overall structure is.

• Use long, sketched lines—straightish, but not precise—to characterize the major flow and direction of a bumpy contour.

Measuring Curvy Path Using Yarn

Generate your own spontaneous curvy line, and practice using directional lines to characterize it.

• Break down smaller rounded shapes into directional lines in the same way, simply on a smaller scale.

exercise: wrapping your hand

1 Place your nondrawing hand flat on newsprint paper, and trace it.

2 Sketch around the hand using directional lines, as though you were wrapping it. Your sketch should look like a mitten around your traced hand.

3 Use directional lines to sketch in the semicircular shapes of knuckles.

4 Measure the length of your middle finger against the back of your palm; the relationship is almost equal.

5 Find a reference point for the tip of your thumb against your index finger.

Now is a good time to take some time from reading to sketch. Use your small notebook to keep your sketches casual. Take it with you when you are out and about. When drawing symmetrical objects, begin with a light underdrawing. Check it on a vertical surface, then add a more specific contour sketch on top.

Asymmetrical Objects Examples

Since the hand is a complex shape, it's perfect for practicing the wrapping technique, using directional lines to determine the general change in direction of all the contours.

Generate your own spontaneous curvy line, and practice using directional lines to characterize it.

Asymmetrical Drawing

morning, I drew a plate of scrambled eggs and toast! I've started to do this more—exercising the brain instead of that never happens!"

—student kathleen leitao

"My sketchbook has become so important. This was a little vase of flowers I drew at Hay Day market while I was waiting for my car to be fixed. The other morning, I drew a plate of scrambled eggs and toast! I've started to do this more—exercising the brain instead of waiting until the kids are asleep and the laundry's done and I've got three hours and I'm not exhausted—because that never happens!"

—student kathleen leitao

Freehand Sketching An Introduction

Freehand Sketching An Introduction

Learn to sketch by working through these quick, simple lessons. This Learn to Sketch course will help you learn to draw what you see and develop your skills.

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Responses

  • Luka
    How to draw asymmetrical objects?
    5 years ago
  • john
    How to draw a symetrical object?
    5 months ago

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