Contour drawing is a great activity for developing your drawing skills, no matter what your age or level of ability. There are dozens of fun projects you can do with contour drawing, but here is one of my favorites…. Shoe Drawings!
1. Remove one shoe and place it on your desk.
2. On a 9×12 paper, make light pencil marks to indicate placement for both the toe and the heel. This helps ensure that your whole shoe will fit on the paper!
3. Then, slowly draw the contour (outside edge) of your shoe moving your pencil across the paper as your eye moves along the edge of your shoe. I like to start at the toe, move across the bottom, up the back edge, across the top and then return back to the toe again. Try to go slowly and include every nook, cranny, bump and bulge. Spend as much time looking at your shoe as you spend looking at your paper.
4. Next, add any interesting details, like stitching where different sections are joined. Do not add any shading!
5. When your pencil drawing is finished, trace over your pencil lines with an Ultra Fine black Sharpie. Then erase any pencil lines that are still showing.
6. For the finishing touch, lay your paper over the bottom of your shoe and use the side of a crayon (with the paper removed) to do a “texture rubbing” in the background. Now you have a complete record of your shoe, including the tread on the bottom!
Some kids think this is the best part of this lesson….. When everyone is finished with their shoe and background, leave shoes and crayons on desks and with a separate piece of paper, walk around making shoe-bottom rubbings from each of your classmates’ shoes. We call these “Shoe Autographs”!