In the previous BobBlast, I demonstrated and explained why I start out with a mid-tone warm red background on my painting surface.
In this BobBlast, I'll show you two ways how I start a charcoal drawing with a mid-tone of grey all over the surface. But why? Simply... because I'm halfway done even before I begin drawing!
For drawings, I use Three Values: Black, Grey and White. I have my two favorite ways to start...
#1 - On a sheet of white
BFK Rives Drawing Paper - I rub in powdered charcoal all over, making the paper grey. I make my darkest black lines, using black, soft vine charcoal sticks. Then, the highlights are drawn with white pastel blocks.
#2 - The second way is to start out with a toned grey sketch paper, like
Strathmore Toned Gray pad. These papers are also available in different grays as well as tan. If the paper is already grey, you're halfway there! All you need to do is sketch with black and white. The mid-tone has already been established.
One of my favorite books for drawing the figure is
Henry Yan's Figure Drawing - Techniques and Tips. Wow! Can he draw! Very disciplined, yet powerful. He does workshops, so check him out.
Now... let's get your hands dirty!