Figure Shading and Lighting

    Vary the transition and scale of value of value of the background, figure light, and figure shadow.



    Alternatively you may use the following website for this exercise.

    Remember to follow any rules of the site. 

    Recommended Settings: Nude and Both Genders

    Here we will train our understanding of light and how to use the representation of light to get across ideas rather than copying down the values you see in a scene.

    For these pieces you may use your own figure references.

    Materials: Charcoal, Charcoal Powder, Kneaded Eraser, Gum Erasser, Chamois Cloth

    Alternative materials: Graphite, Paper Towel, or whatever medium you have.


    1 - Brief Review of Planes of the Body


    • Setup the materials above
    • You may also setup a still life instead of a figure or picture

    Duration: 10 minutes

    • Reminder of seeing the negative space
    • Review of the simple shapes of the human body and their associated planes
    • Reminder of the Value Sphere, and the mechanism of Light


    • There will also be a lecture on why we can assign lines as representation to discontinuities in value (even though lines don't actually exist).
    • We will dive into the biology of the eye and brain to explain certain value illusions.
    • We will review everything to the left




    2 - Figure Shading and Lighting

    Materials: Same as Above

    Duration: 65 minutes

    We will assign a value scale to the negative space and to two aspects of the positive space. The value of the lights hitting the figure (from a specific angle), the value of the shadows, and the value of the background.

    In the picture on the left we can see that the background has a value of 4 or 5 (from 0 to 10 with 10 being the darkest). The shadows start at 10 and in a downward direction work toward 7 or 8. The lights start darker at the top (2 or 3) and go toward 0 in the downward direction.

    You can choose whatever scale you like for the exercise. More examples in the VoD.

    Applying Variations to the Value Scale: 3 Drawings 20 min/drawing

    1. Give each element it's own scale of value (1-10, 2-4, 7-3) in order to gain control of the figure
    2. The elements to focus on will be the background, the light hitting the figure, the shadows of the figure.
    3. Repeat Steps 1-2 but vary the scale and direction of the value variations.
    4. I will alert you when it is time to stop.


    • Give each element it's own scale of value (1-10, 2-4, 7-3) in order to gain control of the figure

    Prism Exercise coming soon

    Submit for Critique

    If you did not use the same reference we did on the stream, submit your picture. Include your Twitch name if you do this exercise on a different day after the stream as critiques will be exchanged for !Kokos. If you used a stock photo from a DeviantArt page be kind enough to drop them a link of what you did! Follow their Stock Rules.

    Submit via Google Forms



    Submit in #drawing_lessons on Discord