Gesture is the most critical part of drawing. It is basically a plan or a blueprint for drawing the figure or whatever you want to create. It’s an abstraction of the action you are trying to capture.
Remember we never, never aim to copy the model! (Unless we are attempting to replace what cameras can do.) Our aim is to analyze and understand the model. Capture the spirit of the model.
When we look at the model you want to focus on the ACTION. Not the outline. Not the shapes nor the anatomy.
Every line should lead the eye to the next line. It should be an experience.
What is really difficult about drawing is greatly mental. Not just in terms of how to think about the model, but giving ourselves the freedom to think about the model as an “abstraction of action”.
If I place these 5 lines down, there is no doubt there is a relationship between all of them. Actually your eyes tend to go from one to the next, and the next. It is almost animating itself.
We can render energy and direction as an abstraction in this way. So, how does this relate to the figure you ask?
Well, we can start to bringing it closer to the “physical realm” by drawing around these transitioning lines to give them depth in perceiving them. If I draw these lines downward in a rhythmic downward procession, wrapping lines around them starts to give them a three-dimensional feeling. Note how these lines not longer just look like cascading lines, but now a 3D tube twisting downward.
This same approach can be applied to a human figure like this example:
Keep it simple. Don’t aim for perfection on the first pass.
Remember we are not drawing the figure but making a composition. So get the TOTAL ACTION.