III. The third type of drawing consists of lines as shades, perceived as areas of light and shadow. Through the use of different tonal qualities, these drawings can define surfaces and areas, imply distance and create a sense of space. Such forms of drawing are thus the most direct and detailed imitations of visual perception.
Although modernism questioned the need to imitate nature, this form of drawing is still most commonly taken for a proof of artist’s skill. Indeed, achieving a hyperrealist quality to compete with photographs takes years of practice. In order to create such illusion, an artist needs to be able to assess the visuals with more objectivity than in the aforementioned forms of drawing. The necessary skills of observation to make a convincing imitation can be developed through practicing life-drawing, making sketches from direct observation. References in forms of photos and sketches are often included to ensure the accuracy that the human memory, with its tendency to group, forget and simplify, cannot offer.