New Tools

Last Christmas my awesome parents got me a Neo Lucida. It is handy little gadget for drawing WHAT I see.  While I had some free weekday-time back in February, I went to the biology department and tried it out on some skulls (as well as shells, corals, and various…things in jars). How it works is simple- you look through a tiny prism, and see what’s in front reflected on your paper beneath. Alas, the tool isn’t foolproof, and it took me a while to figure out why my drawings kept getting skewed. My biggest issue was that my specimens were being squashed by the lens. Just check out the tiny monkey skulls in the upper-left corner of the picture below (I didn’t use the lens for the bottom one). Notice anything?

LucidaSketches

The trick is making sure the lens is at exactly the correct angle- a few degrees off and you’ll notice stretching. Once I figured that out, I tried my hand at the wolf skull again and am much happier with the results.

LucidaSketches2b

This time, to my relief, it looked more like a wolf and less like an alligator.  The Neo Lucida can be incredibly useful when set up properly, but as with many such tools, you need to pay attention to how  you’re using it.  Needless to say, it’s also not particularly great for drawing anything that moves around in the field of view, but as far as drawing still subjects goes, I particularly enjoy it.  It also, unfortunately, hasn’t been very great for detail work; it’s more suitable for general shape and proportions.

That’s all for this week.  Hopefully I’ll have something more substantial next week!

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