Allow me to begin by asking a question. Are zebras black with white stripes? Or are they white with black stripes?
We’ll talk about zebras and their stripes a bit later, but that’s not really the point here. The point is that you knew it was a zebra. When you looked at my post and saw this fellow, yeppers, you knew exactly what it was.
For me, that’s significant. In the past, I’ve found it extremely difficult — well, let’s just say impossible — to draw animals that actually look like what they’re supposed to be.
Now, I don’t claim my zebra is perfect. But I do claim that it is a zebra, and I’m proud of it.
If you attended the most recent session of Gettin’ Sketchy, a timed drawing practice from The Virtual Instructor, you’ve seen this zebra, both the reference photo and the excellent drawing Matt Fussell made. You might have even drawn a zebra of your own.
The challenge was to finish the drawing within forty-five minutes. As usual, I didn’t concern myself with getting all the details exactly right, so I completed my zebra drawing in about twenty minutes and spent the rest of the session watching Matt and chatting with friends.
Yes, I do need to go in and darken the zebra’s eye a bit. You might be able to guess that this drawing was an example of reverse drawing. Instead of making dark marks on a white ground, we used white charcoal on a sheet of black drawing paper.
The materials I used were:
My paper is 12 x 18, so I cut it into quarter sheets for this drawing assignment.
I haven’t done a lot of reverse drawing, so I didn’t get the eye quite right, but overall, I was happy with my zebra drawing. I did use sighting techniques to help me achieve the proper proportions.
I had fun with the drawing, and as I’ve already mentioned, I completed it in about half the allotted time. I didn’t take it too seriously because I didn’t really expect to do very well with the project. I figured I’d end up with a wonky-looking creature with a silly look on its face. It really wasn’t until this morning that I took a good look at my striped fellow and realized that it’s not bad at all. Had I taken more time with it, I might have ended up with an excellent drawing of a zebra with more realistic-looking stripes. But then I would have missed out on the fun of casually chatting with my friends, so I guess I’m glad I didn’t push myself too much.
Now, back to today’s science question. Are zebras white with black stripes? Or are they black with white stripes?
So, now you know!