I tend to draw whatever materializes in my head – However to pinpoint my inspiration it seldom comes from specific artists or photographers, however, these are related to my extreme fascination of strong dark portraits. I tend to either draw in light pencil and follow-up in fine pen but I am more intrigued by dark toned pencil drawings – Using a very soft pencil I feel you capture more emotion. I like to draw with this type of style not in self-portraying but portraying other people, not there face but their hands, feet, and other body parts that is why I have chosen to chase this particular style in Unit 4 of my Art A level.
I find that so much is missed when you look at a person, you don’t intend to actually look at the curves of their hands and the texture of their skin and all it’s different pigments. In the drawing to to the right I chose to highlight the scar on the right ankle that had been there for some time. When you Take the time to study specific parts of the body it tends to draw your focus on detail and exactly how you can express emotion in the shading to what you see. I tend to take a peculiar perception of the subject and place the parts in unusual positions this piece is almost surreal, not just the shading but the positioning of the feet. An alternative interpretation on the feet suggests it’s old, gnarled tree, the toes are its roots and the ankles are the branches.
I have drawn few pieces of my Mother’s feet – capturing the pure essence of emotion of them. I tend to draw these from life but tend to shade with my imagination. My influence comes from various artists specifically Leonardo Da Vinci, his sketches and studies of Anatomy are fascinating. Da Vinci draws and studies the human body for knowledge not entirely just for art. However I am taking his studies of feet, Hands, arms etc. as pieces of art and interpreting his drawing style myself to adapt my own.
The piece of work below is called “Study of a hand” created with pen and ink on paper. Just the Style of Da Vinci really intrigues me he is a man of “unquenchable curiosity” and “feverishly inventive imagination.’’ He seems to capture his subjects in a real sketchy way – Not like my piece above which seems to be more surreal and dark and a lot heavier on the pencil. Da Vinci homes in on the detail around the knuckle and fingers then sketches vaguely the sleeve and tunic this gives it an almost scrapbook feel. The joints of the hand can suggest they are exaggerated not just that but the position of the hand is unusual and is seems tensed or flexed. This is quite similar to my drawing on the right hand side of ballerina’s feet. The tone seems a lot darker than Da Vinci’s however the positioning of the body part is quite similar.
Vitruvian Man is perhaps Leonardo da Vinci’s most famous illustration. In this work, Leonardo used both image and text to express the ideas and theories of Vitruvius, a Roman architect. The Theory os Vitrivius, presented by Leonardo, formed the basis of Renaissance proportion theories in art and architecture.
Vitruvius discussed proper symmetry and proportion as related to the building of temples. The architect believed that the proportions and measurements of the human body, which was divinely created, were perfect and correct. He therefore proposed that a properly constructed temple should reflect and relate to the parts of the human body. He noted that a human body can be symmetrically positioned within both a circle and a square; this idea influenced his architectural practice.
Leonardo’s illustration of the theory of Vitruvius is a pen ink drawing of a male figure whose outstretched limbs touch the circumference of a circle and the edges of a square. His belly button falls in the exact centre of the circle. There is a changing perspective in the work. It is static in structure but dynamic in its presentation of a moving, living man. Hand-written text surrounds the drawing of the figure.
Various artists and architects had illustrated Vitruvius’ theory prior to Leonardo, but Da Vinci’s drawing differs from the previous works in that the male figure adopts two different positions within the same image. Da Vinci’s chosen a strong and powerful figure, the muscles extrude and the whole of the body is tensed.
The sketchbook pages of Da Vinci’s ligaments and the ‘Vitruvian man’ can be interpreted as similar work to mine in the sense they express tone more fluently and exaggerate the movement of the human body using the emotion of tone to do so, However his work suggests they are more focused on science and hold more ingenuity.
Another artist I have studied is Mathias Grundwald. As an artist he captures almost hidden beauty within his subject. I have chosen a painting that is not so dissimilar to my own work. This painting is called ‘The crucifixion’ a ominous and quite dark painting of Christ.
Grunewald left nothing undone to bring home to us the horrors of this scene of suffering: Christ’s dying body is distorted by the torture of the cross; the thorns of the scourges stick in the festering wounds which cover the whole figure. The dark red blood forms a glaring contrast to the sickly green of the flesh. By His features and the impressive gesture of His hands gives a comparative to my own work and the gestures I chose to express in pencil tone. The body is also exaggerated and abnormally large compared to the other subjects around him adding to the grotesques of scene.
My work is expressed more through pencil tone and emotion, whereas Leonardo da Vinci’s work was more based upon the movement of science and it’s step into renaissance our work is quite similar in the sense or capturing emotion through tone however my work is more art based and has a stronger aesthetic view. The similarities between Leonardo Da Vinci’s and Grunewald’s pieces in the religious controversy that shocked social precedent of the time is reflected in my use of a similar contrast in social expectation of today society. The depiction of aged feet performing the typically youth dominated occupation of ballet would have a similar effect.