In this exposition, I examine drawing exercises for drawing spaces and forms in free-hand. I present three exercises: Circle of Boxes for drawing three-dimensional form, Perspective Crash for drawing interior views, and Running Sketch that involves observational drawing. The exercises have steered my drawing activity towards different directions and produced material for reflecting on the skill.

My background is in spatial and furniture design studies. This in part informs my drawing approach, but the present drawing project is separated from questions of drawing use within design tasks. Here I have adopted one type of drawing as a topic of research, the exercise drawing of free-hand three-dimensional perspectival form and space. This kind of drawing presents different challenges than, for example, projective perspective methods or working from photographs and models.


The method of approach has been to devise and identify personally appropriate drawing exercises that appear to belong together, and to examine them and the resulting image and video material within the frames of skill development (Dreyfus & Dreyfus 1986), reflective research practice (Schön 1991) and the concept of indwelling (Polanyi 1993). The research materials are the described exercises and outcome drawings. These are also part of the research outcome, including the reflection on the direction-setting for the exercises and the drawing practice. The research materials also include exercises from the practical art and design drawing literature, discussed below.


The focus of this exposition is in building the exercises in conjunction with my drawing project as research activity, leaving out the broader themes of how drawing is learned or taught. I consider the significance of the drawing exercise as a contribution within research in the arts.

Practicing Drawing Skill

Dreyfus & Dreyfus (1986) model of skill development suggests that skill-building begins from an aim to understand formally and advances towards mastery, where the skill components are difficult to explain. It is often the novice who strives to follow rules and survey the situation analytically, whereas the master relies on experience of past cases. (Ibid., 35.) Although the game of chess is built from discrete rules, the master chess player can no longer rationally explain his or her play style, not even aware of following any rules (ibid., 113). In fact it is the people who stubbornly interpret chess as "analytic" may find themselves stuck at a competent level, never attaining mastery (ibid., 25). The novice status refers to adult learning of skills, as children learning to walk and talk does not really arise from formal understanding. Dreyfus & Dreyfus suggest such learning is more based on imitation combined with trial and error (ibid., 19).

For John Dewey, a reflective inquiry and curiosity is at the heart of how we perceive and learn our basic motor skills at all. Not only adults reflect. 
(Dewey 1910 65–66.) An argument can be put that formal definitions and explanations follow from a reflection of practical tasks, and not the other way round. According to Michael Polanyi, skill is not acquired by looking at, but by dwelling in it, attending a coherent whole through integrating the particulars of the skill (Polanyi 2009, 18). An explicit awareness of these skill elements can be initially paralysing for the practice, but such obstacles may be necessary to overcome before the skill can advance. In Polanyi's example, the learning pianist who becomes overtly aware of finger positions may lose the ability to play well, having lost sight of the coherence. After handling the crisis properly, a more nuanced skill may emerge. (Ibid., 1819.) The explications may also relate to knowledge that borders on the actual skill, but is not the same skill. Although intimate knowledge about the workings of an engine may supply insights to driving a car, it is not the same as being able to drive. (Ibid., 20.) 

Donald Schön (1991) wanted to open know-how to the realm of research, and his theory of reflection as a component of practitioner research is also relevant to skill building. To engage in reflection is to ask questions about what procedures are being enacted when performing, and how problems are framed for skill deployment (Schön 1991, 50)
. Schön stressed that the reflection can take place during the action (ibid., 49) and that uncertain and unique situations stimulate reflection (ibid., 68). Although Schön emphasizes the reflection of the entire professional role frame, the repetitive nature of a piano practice serves as an example of gaining proficiency. Just as a musician repeatedly exercises, any professional encounters similar situations in a practice. Reflection is involved in both senses of the word "practice". (Ibid., 60.)


With these examples in mind, I feel it is clear that formalising or explicating has something to do with advancing skills, but that one should not think the relation of these explications to the skill is clear. Whereas Polanyi highlights tensions inherent in identifying the particulars and the whole, Schön gives weight to the situation where a professional competence is at play and the way the situations can surprise, challenge, and "talk back" (Schön 1991, 131). Dreyfus & Dreyfus offers that something can be said about the general progression of skill, that refining skill is often about finding means appropriate to that skill level, with a risk of misunderstanding what the skill is about. 

Here I want to tie the concept of exercise to skill-building. I ask how self-devised drawing exercises might induce and direct reflection on the drawing skill, or provoke the kind of explication of skill particulars that carries with it the potential of skill enhancement. This would help heighten the role of an exercise as both a tool for researching skill and as a more bounded, communicable whole than, for example, the entire drawing practice. This way, as part of practitioner research, exercises and instructive drawings become seen as matter of research in the arts, also examined through series of drawings.

I have used the three exercises presented in this exposition for reflecting on my current state and refreshing my abilities. I call the presented tasks exercises as they are separate from my other drawings (Figure 1.) where I may not consciously use the techniques. The exercises arise from an identified personal need to articulate space and form in more confident and nuanced ways through drawing.

My expectation is that the massed perspective drawing would undergird drawing more generally. Learning to draw subject matter as masses of form would then also benefit different drawings than is directly apparent from the exercises. Despite the risk of misidentifying the path toward further drawing skill, this framing is nevertheless what collects these exercises together. This exposition represents a phase of being aware of skill particulars where I tempt overt awareness through relevant exercises, perhaps eventually leading to an abandonment of these exercises entirely.

If this identification of the situation is correct, then tacit and explicit knowledge are at play. These exercises are formal in the sense they can be described in terms of rules and instructions. Perspectives, when treated as orthogonal lines and cubes, also have a definiteness of space about them. Yet the activities taken within the exercises can elude explication just as actions in the broader drawing practice. The exercises can also help tease out some more primal and inexplicable qualities of learning. In hindsight, the exercise cases themselves become subject for reflection, in asking whether these approaches have been fruitful for addressing my particular obstacles and the possibility of seeing these processes as a contribution to research.

Elsewhere, I have presented a reflection on the long-term process where different drawing and computer tool building activities informed each other. I felt that both building the tools and the formal nature of the computer work stimulated thinking on my drawing process and gave directions for the drawing practice. (Heikkinen 2013.) Now that I am aware of such terrain, I have set the more elaborate computer work and drawing apart. Here there are different types of drawing tasks to reflect on instead, more or less formal. To give an example, the projective lines in perspective methods work in a computational way, making the perspective drawing a different type of drawing than loose sketching. As computer visuals are an important part of my overall drawing practice, I have shown connections to computer work where appropriate.

In my present project, I try to take hold of drawing form and space with less concern for the practicalities of depicting for a particular professional practice. I continue my drawing research with the idea that stimulating reflection can be invoked through devising and executing drawing exercises. I concentrate on what I interpret as the tangential nature of the exercise activities in relation to the desired skill. As drawing exercises can be auxiliary acts in relation to the drawing skill, this presents a case for drawing as a thoughtful activity that can be largely instrumented through drawing itself. As I will discuss below, books on drawing are neither recipe-books or universal guides for how to draw. This becomes grounds for seeing the activities pertaining to the advancement of the drawing skill as a form of contribution to artistic research.

Research in the Arts and Drawing

Drawing projects presented in research in the arts are both diverse and address specific issues. Besides, not all trace making is guided directly by hand. For example, artist-researcher Tuula Närhinen built settings where natural phenomena such as water and tree branches produce traces and shapes on surfaces (Närhinen 2015). Even in the family of hand-made drawings, the focus in this exposition, the drawing skill may be elusive.

The notion of indwelling can be used to examine the artist researcher's relation to drawing. Just as Polanyi described skill as dwelling in the particulars of the whole, artist Welby Ings (2014) has described the indwelling in the world depicted in drawings as enstasis, "[...] an induced interior state of self hood where one dwells in the creative potential of what is not yet formed." (Ings 2014.) Although he then describes the drawing process as a conversation with the drawing, Ings wants to emphasize the "nebulous" quality of this dialogue. (Ibid.)

For the wide variety of practicing artists, this indwelling is not always concentrated on drawing spatiality or composition on a surface, but can include and intertwine the subject matter, poetics, expression and concept, whatever the artist is engaged with. For example, Ings' drawing case relates to tying together a narrative and expression for a short film about prejudice and intolerance that was both created through and includes the drawings (Ings 2014). To draw is then not about integrating the (technical) particulars of the drawing method, but the particulars of the emerging project.

Ville Lukkarinen has examined how the artists' experience of a place is formed through drawing. He suggests that landscape drawing and painting are directed by an intense engagement with the surrounding environment. (Lukkarinen 2015, 154.) In another direction, Patricia Cain has sought to enactively enter the other artists' ways of working through retracing, while at the same time opening up the methodological space of drawing for inquiry (Cain 2010).


Lukkarinen's observations and Cain's artistic project demonstrate how artists or researchers become invested in their work, but the chosen topic and route of inquiry can be highly personal. In my work, drawing the surrounding environment from life does not stimulate excitement or curiosity, the value of being there does not direct my inquiry. I would stress Ings' viewpoint: the being there in the realm of the depicted rather than the present environment, can as well be the enstatic or intense experience.

I can certainly attest to the intensity Lukkarinen mentions, which in my case is more directed to the programmatic, generative qualities of an imaginary drawing. Although I share Ings' interest in depictive and naturalistic presentation, Cain's project is more relatable to the tasks at hand as her drawings are imaginary and in a sense not from life. The re-enactment "suspends our habitual drawing practices and dislodges our usual modes of thinking" (Cain 2010, 253). Yet, such a
 sustained interest in the work of other artists I see as a much more intense apprenticeship than I am after.


Arguably a personal interest and inside view toward drawing is what drives an artistic researcher towards a topic within the diverse realm of drawing. The artistic research impulse may be similar, but attends to different themes with different means. Despite differences, various drawing projects can be related to each other and thus contribute more widely to the research in the arts or other domains.

To me the notion of intense indwelling is characteristic of an artistic (research) approach to drawing. It is easy to see how it might escape any formalisations and models of skill, even though at the same time the examples demonstrate skill. To dwell in the problematics of depicting landscape or re-enacting the practice of another artist, the artist would need at least some kind of goal, even if nebulous one, and a sensitivity to goal attainment or redefinition. Although indwelling itself can remain indescribable, the road to indwelling may be signposted with questions of skill, formal explications and even technique.

I recognize the indwelling in my work in those moments where good results seem to emerge when I forget about the methodical or technical choices involved with the drawing. Yet I have wanted to pursue activities that would address my own current concerns about drawing, the ability to draw forms and spaces with more confidence, richness and subtlety. To make these exercises is about the felt need to foreground the drawing of space and form at least for the time being. By making a thoughtful and appropriate exercise, insight can be produced about one's own drawing ability, with argumentative power conjured up through making the drawing and examining the output. Eventually this insight would be brought back to the drawing skill.

Drawing Exercises in Literature

To illustrate the idea of a drawing exercise, the following describes drawing exercises found in literature, ranging from general advice to exercises that address a more narrow topic.

Onni Oja's (2004) book on drawing from 1950s is a classic in Finnish drawing literature. It not only contains numerous exercises but thoughtful advice about artistic attitude and master examples from various professional fields. The exercise tasks range from vague to more definite. One suggestion is to draw household machine items and tools from life as an introduction to perspective (ibid., 4143). The examples are never overtly mechanical, and are interspersed with humour and witty observations. One advice is to "befriend" and take time with a model, be it a human being or an object (ibid., 57), to "be" a mountain, grain field, tree, horse or another person (ibid., 75). A compositional exercise begins by positioning rectangular shapes on paper thoughtfully, continued by allowing them to fall on a surface randomly. The abstract exercise is done both as black-on-white and white-on-black variants, followed by drawing activities with increasing naturalism. (Ibid., 220224.)

Oja's book addresses drawing very broadly, and the span for each topic is short. Other manuals and literature are more focused depending on the professional field or topic of interest they address.

Design schools in the past could advocate different rule-based approaches in their design drawing exercises. Maier (1980) describes a foundational drawing course in the Basel school of design, where students begin by drawing free-hand cubes, advancing towards curved and more complex objects. The aim is firm rapidness and a sculptorly attitude towards drawing. (Maier 1980, 25.) Aside from perspectival form drawings, design drawing exercises could involve drawing as a physical, repetitive act without regard for subject matter or a motif, such as drawing blind or over an uneven surface (Olpe 1997).

Human anatomy for life drawing is a commonly covered topic in books, and also a subject for exercises. John Raynes (1993) shows detailed drawings of bones and muscles, and then gives a number of model drawing projects. Task topics involve structure, dynamics, light and shade, clothing, character, movement and creativity. One gets the impression that the exercises are meant to support and counterpoint each other. As an example relevant to the present project of drawing massed forms, the structuring of the poses is described using architectural metaphors, such as "tower block" and "skyscraper", (ibid., 152156) stating that "You should be searching for a strong piece of architecture which stands firmly on a discernable base" (ibid., 156). The scaffolding for the body is illustrated as a perspective wireframe that contains the body (ibid., 156).

Drawing manuals can be aimed at a high degree of specificity. Malisto's (1958) drawing guidebook is intended for hairdressers, making the case that professional hairdressing is a creative artistic activity. The hairdresser's professional drawing needed to take into account the proportions, line and specific qualities of the model in a realm of rapidly changing fashions. (Ibid., 56.) The exercises begin from repetitive ordering of changing line densities, proceeding towards wavy and curly shapes, braids, buns and massing these shapes over a human head or face.

Betty Edwards’ well-known example of a confidence-building exercise for beginners is provided with a demonstration of results. The student would make a free-hand copy of Picasso’s drawing of Stravinsky upside down and find out that the usual obstacles for copying do not apply: as human body parts are no longer strongly recognized, the copying becomes easier. The student finds through a single exercise that further skill resides in him already. (Edwards 2012, 5357.) In figure 2 I have copied the drawing both upright and upside down and compared the two. As I already have experience in drawing, the difference is not as drastic as with the first-timer example given in the book.

In these examples from practical manuals and literature, exercises are effectively communicated with a combination of text and drawings. The text component ranges from light description to insightful framings, and it is often the illustrations that speak to the person who draws. A common theme is to discourage over-attention to detail, superficiality and overtly limited motifs. Skill advancement is rarely proven or shown to have stages, and choosing appropriate exercises is left to the reader. It seems that the authors believed that by investing time and shifting between different exercises with altered or even contradictory conceptual focus, drawing skills can be advanced. This brings to mind László Moholy-Nagy's argument that if design exercise tasks are devised to require skill, skill learning becomes integrated to the task completion and is not forced (Moholy-Nagy 1947, 66). Again, in Polanyi's terminology, the different exercises might be considered as representing the particulars that need to be integrated as tacit understanding, through indwelling. 

Exercises have been offered for both drawings that aim at artistic outcomes and for more utilitarian design drawings. In light of the theories of skill and reflection development discussed earlier, it is likely that the drawing exercises from books can help deliver the artist to some steps further in skill, but that routes to mastery are more difficult to describe and promise.

The Drawing Project

In the following I describe the current state of my drawing project and the literature that has more recently influenced it. This also includes practically oriented literature I have found to be more relevant for my drawing and have more thorough content than the ones discussed above.

Currently I see drawing as self-devised rules that are organically applied during the drawing activity. For Paul Klee, an organisation begins from putting the pencil on the paper. Active experimentation with the drawing also contributes to the "analysis of the genesis" of a drawing (Klee 1961, 99). Such a rule-framing helps me distance from protocol analysis-informed textual deciphering about what kind of moves are made during the process of one drawing
 (e.g. Goldschmidt 1991). I seek to understand drawing as its own explanation, with the possibility that exercise drawing could be informative about drawing itself, i.e. making drawings to understand drawings. The rule-lens on drawing gives more weight on the external choices that lead to a drawing and why a certain approach to drawing is chosen at all.


The historical perspective methods are also a point of departure, as they often involve highly specific rules or technical devices. These rules too can be seen as more procedural than verbal, meaning that steps in the process can serve as mnemonics to the next. It is known that renaissance painters not only employed the strict central perspective but also elaborate projective methods for rendering human shapes, especially heads, with reference to Piero della Francesca's "other method" (Evans 2000, 123176). The notion that painters labored on the outcomes through computational, geometric, optical, numeric and projective means have led some to interpret that a renaissance man's studio was nearly a "media lab" with dedicated devices for recording coordinates and translating shapes from reality to surface (Carpo 2008).

The computer-produced animations included in this exposition show the precise rule creation offered by programming. The drawing exercises are informed and mirrored by these short programmatic visuals that relate to my current drawing interests. Yet my principal focus here is in understanding how space and form are rapidly drawn on paper. This to me seems a different angle to drawing, the history of which also involves rapid illustration, design drawings and comic book drawing. It is possible to skilfully draw reasonably precise images of space, forms and shapes without directly projecting, tracing outlines, copying from reference or drawing from life. One way to rephrase my question is to ask what kind of "media lab" does the drawing person have, if not relying on technical devices and projective methods, yet still drawing skilfully environments and forms? Furthermore, at the same time I am not asking what kind of physical implements or even thought processes happen during drawing. What external drawing tasks and projects can be used to enhance and reflection on a skilled drawing practice?


Asking these questions, I have been inspired by the architect William Kirby Lockard's (19302007) book Drawing as a Means to Architecture (1968), in which he argued for a direct drawing of freehand interior perspective images as a significant analytical tool for devising interior space, combatting the dominance of plan and section drawings. This is in part a continuation of Jay Doblin's (1956) work on perspective for industrial designers, which indicates a shift from technical perspective methods towards a way of drawing "ideas in the round" rapidly (Doblin 1956, 7). Lockard continued refining his views, published in Design Drawing, and the revised edition (Lockard 1982) perhaps represents the pinnacle of his effort. Lockard suggested that learning perspective should not be hampered by a drafter's approach towards projection, but should always strive towards free-hand drawing. Any method is merely a stepping stone towards capable sketching.

Lockard has collected separate exercises in the book Design Drawing Experiences (2000), but curiously these seem to have less argumentative force than the other literature.

Another work I have found interesting is illustrator Burne Hogarth's (19111996) books on drawing human figure, with heads, hands and dynamic anatomy as separate topics (Hogarth 1965; 1970). Instead of treating human form as an overtly anatomical topic or as portrait painting, he provided examples for massing the body as a three-dimensional object, again without recourse to projective methods or heavy emphasis on numeric proportions. My chief interest is in the way the almost robotic and blocky "wire-frame" exaggerated illustrations provide intriguing visuals that strike home the way toward drawing.

I was initially drawn to Lockard's work as it provided means for treating space from an interior perspective. (Figure 3.) Yet the real trigger moment was the insight that a good command of free-hand perspective could be achieved by treating space as masses of cubes, eventually discarding projection and vanishing point entirely. This found affirmation when looking at Hogarth's output, as the same appeared to be true of drawing human forms as three-dimensional entities. I found it attractive that by reducing the human head into a three-dimensional shorthand model I could avoid mannerisms that result from frontal or profile perspectives. (Figure 4.) This also found a counterpart in computer work, where pixels, blocks, orthogonal shapes and cubes can be both an outward aesthetic and conceptual building blocks. It has been crucial for my drawing project to understand and instrument the idea that drawing spaces and forms can become set up or framed in different ways. Beginner's ideas about portraiture and vanishing points gave way to a project of free-handed structural massing.

This advancement came with pitfalls. I began by trying to directly copy what I saw in the books, but I soon realized I was not truly following the authors' advice. It is apparent that if Hogarth's images are taken too literally, the results can be stiff, lifeless and overtly symmetric human bodies and heads. Lockard's interiors can also become a mannerism in itself, a viewpoint as fixed as the one-point perspective. I had in a way misunderstood the instructive drawings as something to emulate. Lockard directly says that his book illustrations are not representative of his real rough sketches from his architectural practice (Lockard 1968, 32). However, I felt I had started to transform the examples into exercises that are certainly inspired by the books, but are not directly found from them. This incident recalls Dreyfus & Dreyfus in that one can try to imitate without knowing exactly what would be useful to imitate (Dreyfus & Dreyfus 1986, 168). This does not mean the misunderstanding resulted in wasted effort, as the urge to redefine the advice into exercises was born this way.

Both Lockard's interior drawing and Hogarth's human shapes can be commended for the way the ideas are supported or brought forward with images. Importantly, what is being shown is always more or less tangential to a "real" finished outcome. The authors are not satisfied with showing good outcomes to emulate, but they show visual signposts and rhetorical drawings on the road towards achieving the results.

The issues strongly arise from a practitioner's point of view, derived from years of experience in using the tools and attempting to deliver insight through a textual-visual exposition of these ideas, without necessarily being fully (verbally) explicit about what the ideas and insights are. This to me signifies that a practice research tradition is at play. The contributions are to a domain where the audience must have enough comparable skills in order to understand the issues at hand, coupled with visuals that enhance the argument, if not visual arguments (cf. Bolt 2007).

Interestingly, the books without exercise projects supplied the most useful material and thought for devising my own exercises. The authors of the drawing manuals transmitted part of their learning through the textual-visual output. These were only partly given in the form of explicit exercises. The methodical approach and dissection of topic leads towards more capable free-hand drawing. I am at the receiving end of these ideas, attempting to transmutate the examples into activities that could be more helpful for my drawing practice and relevant for the artistic research of day. 

The Three Exercises

Each of the exercises are described as written rules to be followed. I have tried to be clear about what I hope to achieve with the exercises, although I am aware my expectations may turn out to be unfounded in the future. The descriptions are accompanied by pictures of results, videos and video stills of the making processes. I have added post-reflections to the exercises which describe my thoughts about the task now that I have examined the material with hindsight. Reflecting on the produced documentation is not the main point of the exercises but they do give an additional layer for examination: repeated tactics, shortcuts and mannerisms are sometimes more effectively revealed in video review.

The exercises presented here are not training wheels or guides for beginners as the drawing skill has been already well developed. I would emphasize the need to identify or create exercises that address a current area of interest or problem. Above I described the drawing project and the ways different concepts and ideas from literature have influenced it. The exercises seek to bind together repeatable tasks that could pointedly address the same concepts of form generation in perspectival space.


In this exposition I have considered drawing exercises in terms of skill development and as a means for advancing reflective thinking in the frame of practitioner research. Through engaging in creation and execution of three different exercises, I could direct my attention to issues of skill development in my drawing. The identification of three exercises as an elucidation of my aims and current thinking is also part of the research process and results.


With the focus on exercises, I have attempted to isolate insights about drawing so as to involve a different unit of research than the entirety of my whole practice or some specific outcomes. I have examined exercises in order to enhance and add to what drawing could mean as a working basis within research in the arts. In this sense, exercises provide a mode of engagement, a laboratory set of tools for research.

In my interpretation I am not emulating the actions of past masters or entering in their practice. I am instead collecting and looking together a scattered set of artefacts, the drawing exercises and example images the past authors left behind. The past exercises are akin to building blocks that I have used to construct a set of exercises that are appropriate for my current practice. In another sense, they are references for building my personal theory of drawing.


A drawing exercise is here a decided outlining of a domain for drawing where explicit rules are a starting point and the drawing poses a challenge. A drawing practice can involve exercises, but exercises can also work as excursions outside the normal practice. In this domain the risk of paralysis, misframing and thus renegotiating the artistic practice becomes possible, perhaps even necessary for further skill and practitioner's role frame reflection.

Exercises can be research materials in a practice-oriented or artistic research projects, potentially enhancing project descriptions as parts of reflective research cycles, but also as contributions in themselves. Instead of a textual exegesis of a drawing project, a different kind of drawing activity may serve as a dissection of another drawing project or drawing altogether.

To further develop drawing exercises as material in research in the arts, new exercises could be devised that go beyond current skills in a more radical way, questioning the relation of skill and art more thoroughly.  


Bolt, B. (2007). The Magic is in Handling. in Estelle Barrett and Barbara Bolt (eds.) Practice as Research: Approaches to Creative Arts Inquiry. UK: I.B. Tauris. P. 2734.

Cain, P. (2010). Drawing. The Enactive Evolution of the Practitioner. UK: Intellect.

Carpo, M. (2008). Alberti's Media Lab. In Mario Carpo and Frédérique Lemerle (eds.) Perspective, Projections & Design. Technologies of Architectural Representation. London and New York: Routledge. P. 4763.

Dewey, J. (1910). How We Think. D.C. Heath & Co. Publishers.

Doblin, J. (1956). Perspective: A New System for Designers. New York: Whitney Publications.

Dreyfus, H.J. & Dreyfus, S.E. (1986). Mind Over Machine. The Power of Human Intuition and Expertise in the Era of the Computer. New York: Free Press.

Edwards, B. (2012). Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain. A Course in Enhancing Creativity and Artistic Confidence. 4th edition. Great Britain: Souvenir Press. 

Evans, R. (2000). The Projective Cast. Architecture and its Three Geometries. Cambridge, MA. The MIT Press.

Goldschmidt, G. (1991). The Dialectics of Sketching. Creativity Research Journal 4(2). P. 123143.

Heikkinen, T. (2013). Design Credo. The Making of Design Tools as a Personal Theory Building Process. Doctoral Thesis. Helsinki: Aalto Arts Books. 

Hogarth, B. (1970). Dynamic Figure Drawing. New York: Watson-Guptill.

Hogarth, B. (1965). Drawing the Human Head. New York: Watson-Guptill.

Ings, W. (2014). Embodied Drawing. A Case Study in Narrative Design. Artifact. Volume III, Issue 2. P. 2.12.10.

Klee, P. (1961). Notebooks Volume 1: The Thinking Eye. London: Lund Humphries.

Kosonen, K. & Mäkelä, M. (2012). Designing platform for exploring and reflecting on creative process. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 45 (2012) P. 227–238. 

Lockard, W.K. (1968). Drawing as a Means to Architecture. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

Lockard, W.K. (1982). Design Drawing. Revised edition. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

Lukkarinen, V. (2015). Piirtäjän maisema. Paikan kokeminen piirtämällä. (Drawer's landscape. Experiencing Place Through Drawing). Helsinki: Suomalaisen Kirjallisuuden Seura.

Maier, M. (1980). Basic Principles of Design. The Foundation Program at the School of Design. United States: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

Malisto, K. (1958). Kampausalan piirustus ja muotoilu. (Drawing and Form for Hairdressers). Porvoo: WSOY.

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Närhinen, T. (2016). 
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Reas, C. & Fry, B. (2014). Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists. 2nd edition. Cambridge, MA. The MIT Press.

Schön, D. (1983)(1991). The Reflective Practitioner: How Professionals Think in Action. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing.


Drawing Exercises

Tero Heikkinen, Doctor of Arts

Circle of boxes

Drawing a circle of boxes sensitizes towards drawing three-dimensional masses through rotation of form.

Perspective Crash

Rapid perspective generation exercise helps acclimatize to drawing interior space and rule invention.

Running Sketch 

Making landscape drawings on the move breaks overtly static form and leads to contemplate the broader physical conditions that influence the drawing.

Drawings from three different exercises. Circle of Boxes, The Running Sketch and The Perspective Crash (Author 2016).

Far left: A GIF loop animation (Author 2016). The animations in this exposition were created with Processing programming language (See for example Reas & Fry 2014).

Figure 1a (above) 1b (below). Examples of free-hand drawings where construction is elucidated through drawing. (Author 2012)

Click on the images to examine details.

Figure 2a-c. Following Betty Edwards' (2012) exercise, I have copied Picasso's drawing of Igor Stravinsky first in up-right position (left) then up-side down (middle, here turned). Finally I have superimposed the two for the purposes of further examination (right).

Figure 3. Drawing utilizing William Kirby Lockard's (1982) perspective guide. (Author 2012) There is no second vanishing point outside the drawing as the horizontals are established as fanning out towards the right side of the drawing.

Figure 4. Sketches following Burne Hogarth's (1965) illustrative model for the human head. (Author 2014)  The simplified head model encourages drawing the head from a variety of angles, and not just as frontals.

Click on the links to examine the exercises in more detail.