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Learning Gesture with Tim Gula – Part 3


[Music] Hey guys, welcome to Proko. We’re closing out our Tim Gula life drawing
series with these eight quick sketch examples, so you can indulge in all the Riley rhythm
glory, enjoy! Okay ladies and gentlemen, let’s then begin
again, once again with the initial approach, the head using that for proportion and
I get the ear so that the angle of the head is that much more obvious and then I’ll make
an inditation for those eye sockets, the nose and just features. But I keep everything very simple and brief
because what I’m really looking for is the action of the pose, so there. Now I have the neck, the angle of the shoulders,
the pit of the neck, so there I have the – where the center begins, using those action lines
and establishing the action. I like to put in the thumb because that gives
an indication of like the arm action. Then I come in with the shoulders and the
ribcage and forming the torso, upper torso and the pelvic area. It’s important that you break it down nice
and simple. And like I said, the more that you practice
this, the more it becomes less intimidating and more not only that, but much more practical
and you’ll eventually get to the point like “oh, how could I have ever never? No wonder I couldn’t draw, I wasn’t using
this method.” and you wonder like how could you or anyone really do good drawing without
this kind of approach. Nice and simple. Where the weight is, how the weight rests. Just in a few lines, a few carefully thought-out
lines and the story becomes that much more clear and the pose becomes that much more
obvious and the whole design of the pose becomes more convincing. See, now because I initially started off with
good information, now I’m able to add on more effectively and then it seems almost as if
the pose is drawing itself because now an intuitiveness is starting to take in and what
you’re eye naturally picks up on and understands on its own begins to work for you. Now, the reason this is called the Reilly
method is because the teacher I had, Fred Fixler studied with a guy named Frank Reilly
who studied with a guy named Dean Cornwell, but he – Riley made Cornwell’s approach that
much more even practical and that’s why this is called the Reilly method because he put
it in its most basic simple terms so that people like me could understand it and use
it for its practical benefits in drawing, which are pretty beneficial. Because like I said, the reason like what
I’m telling you what I’m doing is because from my own experience, once I finally caught
on, it’s like “oh, how could I possibly did any kind of figure drawing without it?” I mean, it’s hard to imagine because it’s
so – it’s so natural and it fits so perfectly for this kind of drawing, especially those
nice decorative design like drawings like say Mucha, Alphonse Mucha and whatnot. You look at those drawings and you’ll have
a better understanding of how he arrived at those results. Okay, thank you. Now we’ll do another post, lots of good action
in this, naturalistic. Once again, I start off with the head, there
I go with the ear to give me the idea of the shape, their circumference and the direction
that the head is in. Once – then I’ll come in and start putting
in more information like say the eye socket and the cheek, the nose… Okay, to the back of the neck. Now, see I got the shoulder rhythm come in
with the ribcage and I just extend it. See, look like that nice rhythm like that. There now, the action and the design of the
pose is that much more available because of those few lines I’ve given myself. And I’ll come in with the fingers, to give
even more gesture to this pose, making it that much more convincing. Okay, now for the chest, there, and the ribcage
is established. See, then the form of the pose is becoming
more and more clear all the time, just bit by bit, more information you give yourself
through careful observation and using those rhythm lines to describe it, that makes it
that much more obtainable. Then the foot, back leg. See, look how I did that with the rhythm. And let’s see how that establishes the weight
of that because that’s where this pose is really all balanced, done by that leg right
there, that weight. But looking just a couple lines shoop… There it is, it’s established and that’s what
you want to start training your mind to do, nice simple breakdowns because then you could
take a better advantage of a situation like this with a great model doing these great
gesture drawings and you don’t have to struggle so much with like stuff that you don’t need
to. Just get those rhythms and look, it’s established
and you know, you have something to really work with. The arm in the back, look at that gesture,
see? Look at that rhythm I just grabbed, grab that
rhythm and those great – that great hand gesture like a Balinese dancer, I love that stuff
because that gives the design of the form a kind of mesmerizing effect. Your eye likes to see that stuff, so let it,
let it look. The back of the head, keep it simple but make
those rhythms clear because now you can actually work with something that’ll be effective and
you won’t give up with frustration and futility because now you have a secret weapon of understanding. You start to learn how to look and observe
and that’s an amazing advantage for an artist especially in life drawing situations with
a great model who like knows how to make these poses that take on kind of a dramatic aesthetic. Keep it simple, let your mind really – let
your mind’s eye really see. Just think about the rhythm and getting the
shape of that rhythm with the rhythm lines, nice, simple and obvious. Don’t throw it too much on yourself, keep
it simple, let yourself breathe to let yourself exhale, don’t let it all be like a big choking
one breath, like really relax into it, learn to relax into it. That’ll be a while though, probably you’re
gonna have to do a lot of practicing, but at least you know what to practice, so now
it’s gonna be possible. Okay, that’s good Sarah, thank you. Let’s try another please. Okay, great pose, thank you Sarah. So once again I start off with the head and
since the back of the head is visible, that means you got to be even more in-tune. And once again, the ears, see how I put those
ears to get the circumference of the head and the direction that it’s in. Then the shoulder. Once I have that, then I start in with the
ribcage, the torso, spine and the buttocks. See how I make like a nice line showing how
the angle where the weight is on that part. Nice rhythm right there with the hand. There’s a nice rhythm to where that arm is. See, so I break it down with the rhythms where
the weight is, the direction that the limbs are in, the weight, where the weight is balanced,
where her balance is. Like that leg there, that’s where her weight
is rested. Okay, so I’ll come in now with the shoulders. Now, I make like these shapes like say this
is where the scapula is. They’re kind of like topography, it’s kind
of like a mapping out the figure. It’s like cartography, cartography of form. Getting where the landmass and the elevations
are, of those land masses and how they create the landscape form. Elbow, see, I’ll make a nice just – like a
round, once again indication of where the landmass, the topography of the form is so
I can keep track of my proportions and things don’t like start going out of control, indicators. See, I’ll make that for the finger. Even just the way the finger is cuz look how
from the shoulder to the tip of the finger, it’s all one rhythm and that’s how I keep
track and that’s how I keep my proportions in check and how the pose keeps its character,
so it’s recognizable like ‘oh yeah, that’s how the model is’. Okay Sarah, thank you. Now that’s great, Wow! Okay, good, here’s a real challenge. Once again, all the same rules apply. Now, see how I got the head there, first of
for mostly because that gives me not only A; the proportions, so I could have a scale
to keep track of with the rest of the anatomy but also, 2, it gives me the direction that
the pose is in, where the action of the pose is. Nice rhythm right there. The arms extended to point – I like those
kinds of poses, there’s a acting going on too, as if a story is being told, a narrative
that gives a nice aesthetic to the pose. Okay, look how I follow that. I got the rhythm showing the torso to
the pelvic. Everything should have a flow because the
more it flows, then the better the drawing becomes obvious to the viewer. There’s kind of like a, I don’t know, a charm,
let’s call it, that that creates. Get some facial features in, especially with
the post like this because it kind of works for it to become more – yes, keep those shapes
clear and to bring out the proportions obvious. Nice shadow pattern right there, makes the
pose even that much more now dynamic. Nice shadow pattern there to. Stan: You design your shadows to flow with
the rhythm? Tim: I do. It all works together, it all works in harmony. And like I said everyone, it takes a while
to get there, so do not be discouraged, you just got to hang in there and the more you
do that, the more the information becomes clear and available to you. Okay, that’s good, thank you Sarah. Okay, so, here we go once again using the
rhythm lines to establish the pose. Start off with the head as always and I put
that ear in so we know where the direction of the head is and also keeps the propotion
circumference. I’ll put in some indication of the facial
like the nose and the eyes. In the beginning, you’re gonna want to make
your heads too narrow, but if you have the ear there on the side, then that kind of keeps
you from doing that, it kind of keeps you – gives you a scale so the head doesn’t become
too narrow and also keeps the proportion
of the head It’s like a landmark. Neck, in the neck, shoulder line,
rib cage… I’ll do that nice line in the middle to give
me an idea of like the shape of the torso, its circumference. The breasts, that helps me to also to establish
where the weight is in the action, then the shoulder, nice rhythm there where the hand
is. Very nice. A good part about this model is, those things
that normally are hard to notice and establish and indicate, she makes more available and
obvious which only helps the drawing. Now, put the navel, so I haven’t – further
indication of the proportion, that way I don’t make things too long. I don’t want them too squat and short and
then at the same time I don’t want them too elongated and rubbery, I want as close to
what’s going on there on the model stand as possible. So, I use every aid I can to help me experience
the drawing triumph… Where the weight is, right there and that’s
where that rhythm goes, where that leg is, that’s where the weight is. See how I taken the pencil from – like a baton
to like scribe for like tricky subtle areas that I need to be more careful with, and that’s
okay, it’s allowed. Then I go back. Now, yeah, I’m not too happy with that angle,
so I’m gonna come in and do some erasing. You look more carefully at my angle, of the
chest. Just a slight thing but all those slights
add up. Get that kind of hand gesture in there, I
like it. It’s got kind of a like I said, a balinese
kind of effect. Okay, that’s good, thanks Sarah. So let’s do another. What we’re gonna do now is, once again use
the tried-and-true. Establishing the head, put some features in
to show the direction, nothing too involved at this point. You want to establish the most basic elements
of the drawing, in this case, the direction of her gaze because that’s where the weight
and the action and all of it will be directed by. Okay, so now we have the neck, the shoulders
and a nice rhythm there of the torso. Nice rhythm. Okay, so now we get the shoulders in there,
makes even things more definable. So, that’s what we want to do in the beginning,
make everything obvious and workable. Look at that great gesture, I’m gonna take
full advantage of it. Look how the nice rhythm I have, look how
I made just a simple oval, elliptical oval for the hand, the indication. And I’ll do the thumb, and that gives me what
I need to establish the hand. So, let’s go and get more information now,
now that we know what to look for. Nice rhythm there, I’m gonna take advantage
of that. See, all these rhythms working together to
help the form become obvious. Now, see her – she has that dancer body so,
she can do things that others can’t, like let’s say the pose of that leg and then where
this leg is and the weight resting on that leg. Nice rhythm there! Okay, let’s see what we could do now, make
things a little more – indication of the hair and the hairline, get that. Use some shadow pattern to create a nice design. This part of the leg is in shadow, so I’m
gonna make a nice pattern from that. Get that form. That belongs there and not there, so I’ll
make the necessary correction. It’s okay, what you put down initially is
just to get things – the ball rolling and then when you come in later, you’ll notice
where it really ought to be or not, then you can just make the necessary alternations. I’m gonna get this hand gesture and the thumb
cuz that’s a great great gesture and I want to take advantage of that. Gives a narrative to the pose, that’s always
good. Let’s make this a little less cluttered where
the thumb is, there you go. Now, I’ve got it. Follow that rhythm… Nice. I’m clear. Okay, thank you. All right, so like what this pose, let’s just
take it nice and slow. Nice rhythm there. Get that gesture. I’m paying attention where the weight is. See, like the way her shift is, the way her
torso shifted and then where the shift is the most pronounced is where the weight is
and I look for stuff like that and that helps me make the pose that much more convincing
and that’s what I’m doing. See, where all these rhythms are following,
they’re following that shift where the weight is, where the balance of her body is. Although these rhythms, they all kind of like
follow that, that’s where the flow begins and ends, getting that shift. So, when you’re thinking about using these
rhythm lines to their most dynamic application it’s by using the following were the weight
of the pose is balanced on. Like see, it’s right there for instance on
her torso where she’s sitting. So, I’m using that as the indication to – I’m
using that to follow and that’s where the flow is coming from. And then, all the pose – the gestures that
make the pose that much more obvious, become that much more available to the eye, the viewer. Even the way the thumb is, like the hands
are hard to draw, I know that. They’ve taken me a long time to get and the
thing that was the key and getting a handle on that was the thumb, where the thumb is
because you get the direction of the thumb and then the rest of the hand just follows
that, follows the direction of the thumb. So there’s something to consider when you’re
doing those hands because they are hard and they take a lot of practice and you have to
have them because you’ll see drawings where the hands are deliberately left out because
the artist would rather not do that, would rather not get involved. Stan: How much Anatomy did you study? Tim: Actually quite a lot and for a long time. I studied at the Art Students League for several
years and I – one of the instructors there was Beverley Hale. Stan: You studied with Hale? Tim: Yeah and he was an Anatomy buff and you
had to learn it. But you know, the Bridgman books on Anatomy
are very good. George Bridgman, I recommend those. They’ll give you a boost that you need to
make your drawings that much more powerful. Okay, Sarah r that’s good, let’s do another. Oh, that’s a good one! I want to get that post, so let’s do this
everybody. Stan: What do you like about it? Tim: Well, I like the way that everything
becomes real obvious clear and enjoyable to look at. I mean, you can really see shapes and forms
doing what they are best at and that’s like creating a good pose. So let’s do our best to like interpret that
and we’ll do it all the same way with the – getting those rhythm lines going. Okay, I want to get the side of that head
as clear as possible, making all the key elements of this pose, giving them the attention they
deserve. You’ve seen those rhythm lines, getting those
poses together. Keeping those shapes and this should at least
be simple but clear and definable so you can work with them. Take full advantage those lines, capture that
pose. Follow the flow. Let a nice flow take place with the drawing,
that’s what all these rhythm lines are for. So, the action becomes that much more definable. Those great hand gestures. See how those rhythms, even with the hand,
they allow you to make a nice representation. The knuckles and then the fingers. See, even that, look at the rhythms, how I’m
using those rhythms to make the hand that much more definable because I love that gesture. Look at that powerful gesture the hand makes,
see. And then you get this stuff and you tuck it
away in your memory banks and then when you’re doing like a future project, all the experiences
from like say – that you’re obtaining now, they become – they come in handy later on. See, look at that great design the hand makes… Just like that. Using the rhythm lines, all the same things
that I use of the figure. Okay, that’s good, thanks Sarah. The hardest thing for me was embracing this
rhythm, this setup of just using rhythm lines and letting kind of like a free experience
and a trust and your visual perceptions take place. But you know, the more you practice, the more
you learn to trust and what this whole method is about because you start seeing its benefit
in ways that weren’t available before. Stan: Thank you so much Tim Gula for taking
the time to show your process. Your demonstrations help keep the knowledge
of these techniques alive. You guys can all check out his work on Instagram
@TimGula.

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