SHADES ™ THE PROPORTIONAL GRAYSCALE PENCIL – 3 Tools in 1
Directions for Use
Proportion and Perspective
• When drawing/painting a figure or any object as your subject, the proportions and tonal values must be gauged from the current lighting and location from where you are standing.
• First, note where you are standing with relation to your subject and your easel. Standing in the same location will keep your proportions consistent and accurate.
SHADES can help get you back to this relative location (more later).
• Next take a measurement by holding your arm completely outstretched with your pencil upright, parallel to your easel and perpendicular to the floor. Select a key feature from the subject, such as the head in a figure. Note the dimension on SHADES. Now transfer the measurement to your paper or canvas.
• As you progress through the drawing, or after a break, check the measurement of the key feature you initially measured. If it appears smaller or larger than what you originally noted, move closer or farther back until it matches. Your proportions will remain consistent and correct.
• The SHADES system uses several grayscale systems. This kit may contain either the grayscale for a 5 Value, 11 Value or both. The 5 value system is used to simplify the initial rough-in of the subject and the main values. The 11 value system is to refine the initial rough-in and allow for more detail in the value transitions. The value scale is flipped so opposite scales are adjacent. This also maintains the value scale on the pencil even while it is sharpened.
• The 5 value system progresses from white to black with three increments in-between - 25%, 50%, 75%, 100% is the darkest value. It relates to how much graphite/charcoal must be added to the white paper. This system helps the student to establish the lightest, darkest and middle values quickly.
• The 11 value system progresses from the white to black base values at each end of the tonal scale and then in increments of 10% from the base. The scale greatly refines the measurement of more subtle tonal changes in the subject, from figure and still life to landscapes.
• Hold the brush scale over the area on the subject to be measured from the vantage point where you are standing. Squint down, to simplify the tonal values, and move SHADES back and forth or up and down until you narrow it down to the closest value reference you find to match. Transfer the value by comparing it to the graphite/charcoal you have already laid into the drawing and what you have determined from the tonal scale.
• Continue the process to completion, as required to maintain the correct proportions and tonal values under the existing lighting.
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