Tag Archives: Figure Drawings

Pregnant Figure Studies

This weekend I had the fantastic privilege of attending a figure drawing session with a full-term mother as the model. Such a wonderful and rare opportunity! If you’re unfamiliar as to why, the venn diagram of overlap between women who will model for art classes and women who are 5-9 months pregnant (and thus most draughtsmanly) is very small indeed. In the many years since I started at RISD I believe this is my first chance. If you’re pregnant and willing to pose, please consider doing your local art community an enormous service!

Here are three studies in conte, red crayon, ink, and gouache. I wish I’d had a lot more time and a lot more practice before the session, but it was a terrific day nonetheless. A huge thank you and congratulations to our soon-to-be mom!


About two weeks ago I wrote about a potential project based on my travels in Egypt, and promised to finish thumbnailing the pages for a full length story by February 23rd. “Did she finish?” asks one. “Is it brilliant?” asks another. “Can I read it right now Katherine? When will it be available on Amazon? Will you be doing a promotional tour across America?” That last part, I am quite certain, no one is asking.

The answers are as follows: YES! February 17th (5 days EARLY!!) I finished, printed and bound a 186-page booklet of a thumbnailed graphic novel. NO! It is not brilliant. Not even close. I’m lucky if half of it is even legible to anyone but me. BUT! I think I know where it is going, and that was really the point of the journey: to see if anything was there underneath the mental snapshots of our two week trip, and I think I’m onto some good leads. Tim Stout (my wonderful, talented husband) sat down with me on Sunday and helped me to extract the POINT (theme) of my story from a certain thumbnailed sequence I’m rather attached to, and I’ve spent the week diving into the pencils based on what I’ve learned about that same scene. I am excited about the road ahead over the next two months as graduation closes in. By May I should have a solid idea of where this project can go, and some sample finish pages to show for it. And, in the meantime, I will continue to do shorts, to try out different styles and approaches to cartooning. I will post excerpts from the process as I go.

Here is a sample thumbnailed spread from the Midpoint. This was executed by drawing with a wacom tablet and using photos from our trip to create page layouts on my computer:

And here is a sample thumbnailed spread from the latter half of Act 2:

This method of working has treated me very well. Using photos feels a little like “cheating,” but, hey, I took them, right? They are placeholders for drawings until I get a little farther along, but when trying to get through 10 pages a day, it was one of the best ways I found to keep moving. “Hey, I already composed this image– in a photo!– so I’ll borrow from myself. Thanks self!”

Figure Drawings

Back in Vermont! After a great holiday at home and a good start to the new year, I am back at home in the New England cold, swinging away at my thesis project to make some significant progress. Expect to see a lot of drawings and comics over the new few weeks from my sketchbook and desktop. Here are a few more figure drawings from Kriota’s workshop:

Structure of the figure while standing and at rest:

Structure of the figure

Figure sitting.

Various added deformities to our two models (Cave-Man & Scoliosis):

Postural deformity (Cave Man & Scoliosis)

And of Kriota (such a wonderful model herself!) as she drew ON the models:

Kriota drawing on the model.

Kriota drawing on the model.

Kriota’s Life Drawing Workshop

Sorry for the delay in posts, guys! Thesis work has weighed me down, but I’ve made some breakthroughs and real progress lately. Hurray!

Two weeks ago Kriota Willberg came to the Center for Cartoon Studies to teach an intensive two-day workshop on anatomy, aging, weight gain and deformity (posture problems, etc.) geared towards cartoonists to help us understand human bodies and create stronger characters. Her lectures were fascinating and I loved drawing the figure again, and she scared the crap out of all of us about staying fit and healthy (and what it looks like over time when you don’t!). Here is a quick look at what we did: our cumulative assignment was to draw a character nude, the skeleton, the muscles, weight gain (or loss), and the character older (or younger). Look at the effects of age and gravity–  yikes! I will post more figure work this week.

Figure Study