How to do shading in Drawing





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Let's talk some more about shading, in fact, let's talk a LOT more about shading. If your goal is to make the drawing look as real as possible, then shading is going to go the furthest to make that happen. Real life objects are seen in three dimensions - objects have height and width and depth, and what most makes the object look 3-D is the third dimension - depth. BUT..... if you look at it logically and think about your paper that you'll be drawing on, the paper has height (it has a top and bottom) and it has width (from side to side), but it has almost no depth. If you look at a standard piece of printer paper (it used to be called typing paper) the paper is 11 inches tall (height) and 8 and a half inches wide (width), but it's depth (look at it from the side) is almost nothing. So what you're really working with is a two dimensional drawing surface. I know you know that about paper, that it's "paper thin" (ha ha), I'm just trying to show that paper, practically, has only two dimensions. But if what makes drawing look 3-D is the depth, how are you going to create depth when you can't draw in the third dimension. The answer is SHADING!

Look at these two cubes. The one on the left looks like a cube all right, but it's very flat, and not very realistic looking. If, for example, you looked at a six sided die, you wouldn't see the image on the left - thick lines outlining the shape of the die, and the light appears exactly the same from all angles of the die. It's more likely that you'd see the image on the right. This is the same drawing as the one on the left, but the one on the right has shading added to it. And the result is the image on the right looks more realistic, this is the way your eye might actually see a die (without the black dots). The difference between the two images is one has shading, the other doesn't.

So let's talk about shading and the many ways it can be done.....

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