Basic Shapes and Tone via 3DS Art Academy – Windmill Drawing

Been having fun playing Art Academy for 3DS. It’s been a cute and engaging way to revisit fundamental art skills.

Here’s a windmill sketch that I completed last night:


This lesson focuses on teaching about form and tone. Using a gray backdrop allows for darker and lighter tone development using a range of 2B to white pencils. Using a darker background would’ve stunted the shadows. Likewise, using too light a background would’ve limited the highlights.

Block in your basic shapes (circles, triangles, rectangles, cylinders, cones) to compose the drawing. Then, sketch in large blocks of midtones. Then work in details through darkest shadows, then highlights, respectively.

Take full advantage of tonal values through contrast. For example, a white hue will “pop” and appear “more white” when it is next to a very dark shade of black. If the same white is positioned by a less-dark shade of black (e.g. a grayish black), it won’t appear nearly as “white”.