The Cornell Lab Bird Academy Discussion Groups Nature Journaling and Field Sketching Drawing What You See – Upside Down Drawing

    • Beth
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      For whatever reason I lost my patience with the slow methodical method less than a minute in so just did a quick copy and really enjoyed it. He probably wouldn't have hawk talons if I'd gone a bit slower...!IMG_3027
    • Jacqueline
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      The activity drawing upside down was both difficult and fun. It most definitely required slow short strokes and frequent looking at the picture as I attempted the assignment. It was a lot to incorporate proportion and negative space while drawing some of the more complicated and intricate parts of the bird and stock.It did take some time and erasing as I went along.979D8A0F-41A2-43D6-906E-B921B799A916
    • Christine
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      Song Sparrow
      • Christine
        Participant
        Chirps: 10
        I think I should have all my subject upside down!  Really enjoyed this technique.
    • Robin
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      I was really surprised how well mine turned out. I have to admit, I got a little frustrated with the fiddly chest markings and kind of winged it (no pun intended), but everything else I strove to do by observing the shapes, negative space, relationship of the shapes, etc. and it worked! I also used the proportion tricks taught in a previous lesson. IMG_3421
    • Marc
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      I enjoyed this assignment as it felt counter intuitive to draw upside down, in fact it caused me to draw slower. I for a lot of it drew without looking at my drawing to help my self see more details and I was pleased with the outcome! When I started drawing it started as a collective of shapes that became more and once it did it was very rewarding.4641D613-A68C-418C-B1BF-A05123C0F82A034CCC2F-CF82-414D-BFF0-8FFAF6CE8D55
    • Sara
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      bird upside downI had a heck of a time with the negative space drawing - gave up.   However, I did use the proportion info when doing this one upside down.   It didn't look great upside down but right side up = OK.   Maybe I'll try the negative drawing using the proportion idea.   The feet really surprised me.
    • Esteban
      Participant
      Chirps: 170
      My sparrow.20210825_141216-01
    • V L
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      Upside Down drawing I was amazed at how accurate my drawing turned out.  It was fun, but several times I felt like I was getting lost.  I tried to keep myself from viewing it as a bird and kept going back to just drawing the shapes.
    • E
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      It was both fun, with some difficult parts, especially when lots of lines and shapes came together.  The upside-down drawing definitely helped with abstracting the relationships between the shapes, rather than drawing from preconceived ideas of what the subject should look like. 21B1E4D5-53A5-47B6-919F-FC7F7EEB8D78
    • Kathleen
      Participant
      Chirps: 74
      Upside down drawing was fun. This was my first time drawing with a mechanical pencil. IMG_20210810_174850
    • Deborah
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      IMG-6937This was a fun exercise.  When I look at all the Song Sparrows we all drew, I enjoyed the fact that each has its own character and personality.
    • Suzanne
      Participant
      Chirps: 22
      Like Dorothy below, the chest markings confused me, but they ended up giving the bird some depth. I also didn't trust the length of the tail or the shape of the eye, but those turned out about right too. I used negative space often to help place the line. This exercise enlightened me!IMG_6822
    • Dorothy D
      Participant
      Chirps: 21
      I found the chest pattern markings the hardest to focus on as without the dark and light contrast,I kept getting lost in the pattern. I do think this is a good exercise for proportion help.Scan Jul 23, 2021 at 7.13 AM
      • Suzanne
        Participant
        Chirps: 22
        I'm with you, Dorothy, on confusing the chest markings!
    • Carolyn
      Participant
      Chirps: 17
      img312 upside down
    • Carolyn
      Participant
      Chirps: 17
      img312
    • Carolyn
      Participant
      Chirps: 17
      Challenging but excellent exercise.  Not because of the upside down image, but most difficult part was inserting the shapes inside bird while considering size, shapes and area allowed.  Also had some issues with pencil following shapes over paper in journal.
    • Bonnie
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      challenging.  head and body proportions were of.  Body to fat.
    • Francesca
      Participant
      Chirps: 9
      IMG_0900 This took awhile, and I really felt like I had blown the proportions out incorrectly for awhile,  but I thought it looked pretty good in the end.
    • Gerda
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      7F244D89-DF79-49FB-BB4A-5F2A78FF4C90_1_105_c I did it - yeah!!! it is amazing - I remember my grandson drawing upside down when he was really little, he turned out to be a cartoonist. This is the first time I have tried something like this. I thought it was fun.
    • Jill
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      It took me a long time to draw but it was a great exercise.  The most difficult part for me was the body with all the different small shapes and trying to fit them into a larger space.  I tried to cram all the tiny shapes in. unnamed (1)
    • johanna
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      image
    • Charlotte
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      Trying again.great challenge! 185AC586-A465-4620-984E-D66A7C08E77F
    • Charlotte
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      71E1CF13-6857-478C-B66E-800FE6EA4675
    • Susan
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      As I have done more and more art and taken a few lessons I am finding I think I have a serious visual perceptual issue. I have that same facial recognition disability Brad Pitt has, I sometimes do not recognize even familiar people until I hear their voices. So I really struggle with this negative space, upside down drawing exercise as I have a huge issue with spacial relationships and proportion just looking at things the way they are, I think I have really poor visual memory. So this just does not work for me.
    • Nancy
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      I was surprised at how good the bird really looked when I turned it right side up. However, all that looking from one thing to another made me kind of dizzy.IMG_0598 2