A simple speed improvement exercise.

The drawing on the left was carried out whilst stood (uncomfortably) in front of this statue of Sir John Sloane at the Bank of England.
This was just a rough pen sketch, but as with any of these “urban sketching” missions time is an important factor.  It took me too long to draw this, probably from getting bogged down in too much detail.
So, I re-drew it later as an exercise in trying to streamline and focus attention on the bare essentials.  How to do this?  Easy, give yourself less time, so I set a five minute timer and I have to put the pen down when the beep goes off regardless of how much of it is done.
As you can tell it’s a lot sloppier in the line quality, and the shading had to be sacrificed – but the main thing is that it’s still identifiable to anyone familiar with the scene.  And to those not familiar it’s at least identifiable as not being an elephant or an orange or a squiggly mess, well, maybe the latter is valid.
It’s a useful exercise, and one which I freely admit I don’t do often enough.  If given 10 minutes to draw I’ll still try and do 15, but awareness of an issue is the first step in resolving it.
Photo via Instagram http://ift.tt/2v8clL4

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