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How can I learn to draw realistically? And what can I draw as a beginner?

Most people would like to learn to draw realistically. Some find it easier from the beginning and some don't even know how to start.

Drawing is a craft that can be learned. The most important thing here is daily training and know-how in the use of materials and technology.

We have described a simple exercise here that mainly describes drawing for beginners.

DIY Tutorial: Drawing and Shading a Sphere

The aim of the exercise is to understand the 3-dimensional effect of light on form and to represent it with pencil on paper.

These materials are required:

  1. Pencils of hardness 2B, HB, and 2H.

  2. Kneaded eraser

  3. Drawing paper

  4. duct tape

The process:

Step 1: First, the pencil is sharpened with a carpet knife and the lead is sanded with sandpaper.

Step 2: The paper is attached to a stable surface with adhesive tape and slightly stretched.

Step 3: First, draw a circle by marking the highest and lowest points and the sides at equal distances, and then complete the outline. A soft pencil (2B or HB) is ideal for this, as it allows you to draw soft, clearly visible lines without applying too much pressure, which can be erased and corrected very easily.

Step 4: We start with a light source. Where the sphere catches the light, a cast shadow is created on the background. Seen from the side, it appears as a flat ellipse. You can imagine lines from the light source that meet both outer edges of the shape and finally the background. This determines the size of the cast shadow.

Step 5: Due to the curvature of the sphere's surface, one area of the sphere is in the light and the other is facing away from the light. The boundary between light and shadow is called the terminator or shadow line. From here on, no direct light hits the surface. We draw this boundary as a curved line that runs around the sphere. (At the outer edges, this meets the auxiliary lines to show the direction of the light incidence, which we used to determine the cast shadow)

Step 6: The shadows (form shadows and drop shadows) are darkened to a uniform shade of grey to visually separate light and shadow. For darker shading, use a 2B pencil.

Step 7: Along the shadow line, the shadow edge is worked out as a soft transition to describe the roundness of the sphere.

Step 8: Within the light shape, the intermediate tones are first modelled as a gentle transition . A 2H pencil is suitable for this in order to keep the halftones light.

Step 9: To emphasize the light shape, the background can also be darkened slightly.

Have fun trying!

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