Gesture Drawing: Sketching Horses

This video shows drawing tips for how to do quick gesture drawings of horses. Techniques explained include how to capture the entire anatomy of the horse efficiently, and then how to build upon that gesture to create a convincing sense of movement and form. Demo by Art Prof Clara Lieu and Teaching Artist Deepti Menon.

Video Walkthrough

  • A gesture drawing aims to capture the personality of the subject in the most efficient way possible.
  • Gesture drawings are much more about the experience of drawing.
  • The final product isn’t important when practicing gesture drawings.
  • Gesture drawings can be really fun and stress free, they’re so fast that you don’t have time to think!
  • There’s no “correct” art media for gesture drawings, use whatever you are comfortable with.
  • 2 min. poses are very challenging because they are so short, but they also free you up to play more.
  • Horses are a terrific subject, they have visible joints but also substantial volume in their body.
  • Is the grid method an effective way to draw?
  • The grid method guarantees accuracy when replicating an image, but not much more than that.
  • Training your eye to draw from direct observation takes a lot of time and training, but ultimately is much faster than the grid method.
  • Using a grid to draw doesn’t allow your personal interpretation to come through in your drawing.
  • The grid method can be helpful when sizing up an image, such as transferring a sketch to a gigantic mural.

Prof Lieu’s Tips

It’s common for people think that when you draw a dog you you will draw differently than if you are drawing a portrait, but that’s not the case at all.

Whether I’m drawing a snake or a person, I’m still applying the same fundamentals regarding blocking in the big shapes, searching for the structure, lighting, etc.

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