Lesson 4 is the lesson I was dreading the most and I think that's true of the majority of people that do the Drawabox course. That is, lesson 4 is insects and arachnids. This lesson was kind of an interesting combination of hard surfaces and organic animals. It was interesting from a technical standpoint, unfortunately it was incredibly difficult for me to look at the references for any significant amount of time. I live in Australia, so most of these bugs have the potential to pop out from nowhere and murder me. This is the first lesson with no exercises at the start, which is unfortunate, because I could've used some in drawing insect legs. Uncomfortable recommends an approach using sausagelike forms connected by balls which I found very hit and miss, particularly as my accuracy with my shoulder on the smaller sections left much to be desired. That said, if for some ungodly reason, I decided to draw insects again, I'd definitely be trying to incorporate the sausage forms a lot more.
From Lesson 2, I moved onto the next logical step… Lesson 3. Finally, I have escaped mechanical skills hell and am onto drawing real things! It was not without its challenges even though it was a territory much more familiar to me. The lesson opens with a couple of exercises much like Lesson 1 and 2 except that they're specific to the business of drawing plants. The first is to draw a page of leaves and the second is to draw a page of stems. I struggled somewhat with the leaves as flat objects existing in 3D space. I did quite a few pages of this but didn't go overboard like I did with my Lesson 2 sausages with contour ellipses (I did about 50 pages of that because I wasn't getting it). I don't feel like I nailed it down in the end so it'll be something I need to practice. Similarly, I had trouble with the stems in the same way I had trouble with the ellipse sausages - I have trouble seeing the ellipses turning in 3D. I did about 10 double sided pages of this one morning before breakfast… yeah, you shouldn't do that. It's a bit hard to control a pen when your hands are shaking from hunger. Anyway, I moved on from it and thought I'd just wing it with the plants, which turned out to be the right thing to do because I got the hang of them when drawing my plants.
After submitting my 250 box challenge, I was cleared to start [lesson 2](http://drawabox.com/lesson/2). Where lesson 1's focus is on straight lines, I'd say lesson 2's focus is on organic and curved lines. The lesson starts out with organic forms (I'll call them sausages) with contour ellipses and lines, it then moves on to adding texture to these from reference images, before tackling form intersections; both geometric and organic. Lesson 2 is more involved than lesson 1, but less so than the box challenge. I spent around three months on this lesson and that was… kind of my own fault. I'd in no way recommend anyone spend as long as I did on some of these exercises. So let's look at lesson 2.
Once I finished [Lesson 1](https://blog.meta.pw/draw-a-box-lesson-1), I was instructed to tackle the 250 box challenge because my boxes were, frankly, woeful. You might be thinking "250?! Why would you draw that many boxes?" or if you're familiar with the Draw A Box curriculum, you might be feeling my pain. The intention of drawing 250 boxes was to improve the student's understanding of 3D space. This unique form of torture started when a student kept bothering the creator of Draw A Box with questions and, in an attempt to get the student to leave him alone, instructed them to draw 250 boxes. When the student returned after drawing 250 boxes, they said that it helped them with their understanding of 3D space and so, it was then a task routinely assigned to those following Draw A Box. So, it was with that knowledge that I started the 250 box challenge.
Way back, probably 2-3 years ago, I found a community on Reddit called /r/ArtFundamentals which I subsequently subscribed to out of interest because the lessons looked interesting and ended up following their Facebook page as well. Fast forward to around October 2017 and the Facebook page posted up a link to their Discord server, which I'd started using heavily a few months back for online gaming. I decided to join up to the Discord server, was greeted by some… odd characters… and nearly a year down the track, I'm still hanging out there. What was interesting was how long it took me to actually start the lessons, even though I was hanging out on the Discord every day. I was offering critique to those that asked because whilst I can't draw very well myself, my degree trained my eye pretty well. It wasn't until late January 2018 that I actually sat down, set aside my preconceptions of my own skill level, and attempted the first lesson on Drawabox.com.