Definition of underdrawing in US English:



  • Sketched lines made by a painter as a preliminary guide, and subsequently covered with layers of paint.

    ‘he worked at great speed, with little reliance on cartoons or underdrawings’
    mass noun ‘the relationship between the two artists is illuminated by comparison of the use of underdrawing in their early paintings’
    • ‘In the end, the detectives are left with fragments of paint, scraps of scarlet borders, shady underdrawings, no firm solution to their puzzles about authorship.’
    • ‘Del Sarto was a great proponent of drawing, and the underdrawings were typical of the way he worked.’
    • ‘Most artists made some kind of preliminary sketch on their support but our knowledge of these underdrawings is severely limited by the methods available for studying them.’
    • ‘Chapuis contents himself with a largely visual approach to the paintings and to a discussion of their underdrawings.’
    • ‘The elements are painted over a ground of thinly whitewashed underdrawing.’
    • ‘Infrared photography, which is widely used to view underdrawings in painting conservation, has been applied to the Museum's six Ethiopian icons.’
    • ‘An examination of sample panels from two earlier Cologne workshops yielded one detailed underdrawing but otherwise only limited outline markings for the figures.’
    • ‘When the work was examined with a vidicon machine, it was revealed to have a vigorous and beautiful underdrawing.’
    • ‘Only if the underdrawing's gradations of black and white were flowing smoothly was it permissible to pick up a brush and add color.’
    • ‘Most artists apply watercolor over a pencil drawing, but many of his watercolors have no underdrawing.’
    • ‘Most artists apply watercolor over a pencil drawing, but many of O'Keeffe's watercolors have no underdrawing.’
    • ‘In removing the uppermost layer of painted plaster from the cut-out chunk of wall, conservators discovered an underlying sinopia or underdrawing.’
    • ‘In virtually every one Turner draws the architecture in pencil and then covers this under-drawing with washes of pale colour.’
    • ‘Radiology has revealed no underdrawing in Vermeer's other paintings.’
    • ‘An underdrawing, if it possesses carbon-containing material, can be seen with infrared reflectography.’
    • ‘What we are looking at in essence is the underdrawing for an illuminated manuscript, an art form that we associate more with the Middle Ages than with the later Renaissance.’
    • ‘Using three works - two entitied Shad Fishing at Gloucester on the Delaware River and Mending the Net - they found underdrawings in graphite directly related to existing photographs.’
    • ‘The style and extent of the resulting underdrawing can vary enormously, from a few sketchy lines to elaborate hatched drawings, complete in every detail.’
    • ‘Eakins did this as he was painting, for there is no underdrawing on this canvas.’
    drawing, preliminary drawing, outline
    View synonyms