Exercise 3: Chiaroscuro

Today’s lesson is on chiaroscuro. I first came across this term on one of the art history lecture. Since then, I learnt that chiaroscuro is a term used when dramatic effect of light is used in a drawing or painting. This method is typically used by old masters such as Rembrandt. I have borrowed a book to look through the paintings done by him to get a better idea of chiaroscuro in artworks.

What we did today was different from the previous lessons. We used our charcoal stick to coat the entire paper black instead of drawing onto the paper directly. Thereafter, we used just used our hands to “erase” off certain areas to make the tone lighter. We also make use of our eraser to highlight certain areas. Prof Woon Lam told us to find a range of mid tones before moving on to the darker tones. This is because with the mid tones, we will be able to gauge the lighter/darker tones better. Additionally, we were told to take notice of the background because when the background is out, our subject will naturally be out.

Oh! There was an interesting thing I learnt in today’s lesson. It is about creating atmosphere. Even though after Prof Woon Lam demonstrated, I still do not know how to go about doing that. However, the effect is really cool if you nailed it. For this, I will have to try harder and practice with the charcoal by myself.

Honestly, I am not very sure if my drawing is ok but the final outcome of it surprised me because initially I really have no idea how it is suppose to look like. Also, I feel that the proportion looks slightly off…

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