Figure Gesture Drawings

Oksana started drawing figure at the end of 2017. Majority of these drawings were created during life drawing sessions at TSoFA studio from model. Oksana prefers to use willow charcoal for figure gesture drawings as it’s the softest and most easily movable media. Her favorite paper for practice is 18 x 24 rough newsprint. However, she used any other available paper such as construction paper or anything with rough texture. These drawings are called gestures, because they’re meant to capture movement of a fleeting pose. During these life drawing sessions, the model would first pose for 2 minutes, then for 5 minutes and so on with the longest pose of 20 minutes. Therefore, all of these drawings are pretty quick and rough. Some of these Oksana uses as reference for more detailed drawings.

In this charcoal drawing depicted is a female figure. She’s standing with all her weight on the right leg, and left leg is just used for balance. Her right leg is indicated by two lines a little bit of shading, but her foot is not drawn at all. The figure is half-turned, we can see her side and partially front. Her head is looking to the right, her arms are resting on her right hip. Her medium length hair is up in a ponytail. The paper is light gray.

Female Figure Gesture Drawing

In this gesture drawing, female figure stands with all her weight on the right leg, and the left leg is used for balance. Most often, I use willow charcoal for gesture, but here I also used conte. I like the pose, but some things could be improved. I left the right leg unfinished, and I…

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This charcoal drawing depicts a male figure sitting in a wooden chair with armrests. The seat in the chair is cushioned. The figure is shifted to the right, along with his gaze. He has long hair gathered in a bun. Figure’s right leg is bent and up on the chair, while the left leg is on the floor. His right arm is resting on his right knee, and the left arm is on his hip. The paper is light gray.

Drawing of Male Figure Sitting in a Chair

In this drawing, I like the sharpness of angles in the figure and the way the chair turned out. Normally, chairs are left to the last and get nearly no consideration. However, this was a longer pose, so I spent some time on both the figure and the chair. At some point, I might even…

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This drawing is done in charcoal on light gray paper. This gesture captures a sitting female figure. Her torso is turned toward the viewer, but her head is tilted away and to the right. She’s hugging one knee, while her other leg rests on the floor.

Female Figure Sitting and Hugging a Knee

Sitting poses are much harder for me to capture as there are more overlaps. There are parts of this drawing that I like, and parts that I want to correct. But then again, that’s how I feel about most of my drawings! 😁

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This charcoal drawing on blue paper depicts a female figure in a standing pose from a side. She is half-turned towards the viewer with her head facing left and her right arm holding onto a balance rig. The rig is not visible and right hand is cut off in this drawing. Her legs are crossed with the right leg bent and in front of the straight left leg.

Gesture Drawing of Standing Female Figure

My favorite medium for gesture drawings is a thick willow charcoal stick. I like that it can be used to make either thin lines with the tip, or broad strokes with the side. This quick gesture drawing depicts female figure from a side with the legs crossed. This pose is quite difficult to portray as…

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Depicted in this charcoal drawing on dark blue paper is a female figure from the side. She's looking to the left while placing her arms on a stool behind her.

Standing Female Figure on Blue Paper

Normally, I use newsprint paper for gesture, but occasionally I feel like adding some color with toned paper. I used blue Canson Mi-Teintes paper for this drawing. However, I think it’s a little too dark for charcoal alone. Still, it’s a good practice and experiment!

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This drawing is done using a mix of sanguine and charcoal on dark-gray toned paper. Depicted here is a female figure leaning on a stool with one arm up. The other arm is supporting the body on the stool. One leg is on the floor, and the other one is bent and rests on the stool's structure. The figure is turned slightly to the left and facing in the same direction.

Drawing of Kia Leaning on a Stool

I don’t mention model’s name most of the time. However, as I look at these drawings, I realize that I recognize the models. So I’ll try to mention them from now on if that’s the case. I’m actually surprised, I recognize them as I never aim for likeness with these drawings. Rather, I try to…

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This is a sanguine drawing on tan toned paper. It depicts a female figure sitting in the chair with one knee bent and the foot standing on the edge of the chair. The other leg is touching the floor. The figure is frontally facing the viewer and looking to the left. The drawing is rather rough and in the early stages.

Female Figure Sitting in the Chair

Here’s another sanguine drawing of a female figure. This time, she’s sitting in a chair. I like the upward direction the pose is giving to the drawing, but I’m not entirely happy with the chair perspective. Still, it’s a good practice drawing and I think I captured the gesture of the pose well. I used…

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A nude female figure is depicted in this drawing. She's sitting on a stool facing the viewer with her body and looking to the right with her head. The drawing is done in sanguine on tan toned paper. It is a quick and rather rough gesture drawing.

Sanguine Drawing of Sitting Female Figure

All of the previous gesture drawings I posted were done with charcoal. But here’s a sanguine drawing! Most of the time, I use willow or vine charcoal for gesture drawing. Occasionally, I use sanguine such as Pipo’s chalk or Conte. It is a less forgiving material, but I do like the look and it allows…

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Depicted in this charcoal drawing on light gray paper is a female figure from the front. She's looking to the left while leaning on her right leg. The pose is a classic contra postal. The drawing is rather rough and a capture of the whole pose, not the details.

Standing Female Figure Looking to the Left, Drawing

I drew this gesture from live model in 2019. I used charcoal on light-gray paper. Depicted here is a standing female figure from the front. She’s looking to the left with her arms behind. She’s leaning on her right leg, which throws her hip to the side. I like the overall gesture of this pose.

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Charcoal drawing of a nude female figure on light gray paper. The figure has her hair up and is leaning on the stool with both arms behind her and feet on the ground.

Leaning Female Figure Front, Charcoal Drawing

This is a gesture drawing of a female figure from the front leaning on a stool. I drew it 2019 from life model. It was probably a 20-minute pose as back then I didn’t have the habit of signing every drawing, and can’t be 100% sure. Looking at this drawing now, I see a lot…

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Reclining figure, charcoal drawing

Reclining figure, charcoal drawing

This piece took me about 30 minutes, and I wish I had done it on a better paper. I used rough newsprint, and it’s not the best paper for longer poses. Still, I’m fairly satisfied with the results, especially considering that I didn’t get the best vantage point for this pose.

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Heroic, charcoal drawing

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