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There seems to be two prominent grips for drawing that I have seen - tripod and overhand. I've used a basic tripod grip all my life for writing but have only just recently come across overhand. From what I've read, basic tripod appears better for small details, whereas overhand seems to be better for larger strokes (correct me if I've got this wrong).

Which joint should I mostly be using with an overhand grip? (wrist / elbow / shoulder / a combination).
Is this grip practical for painting? (or is it exclusive to dry medium)
Are there other benefits to using an overhand grip, apart from large flowing strokes?

Example pencil grips N.b. I have generally seen the overhand grip at a larger angle to the drawing surface - a similar angle to the underhand tripod in this image.

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    I am not familiar with the words you use (tripod, overhand), but this could provide an answer.
    – virolino
    Aug 31 '20 at 5:52
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    Please show pictures of both the grips for better understanding. Aug 31 '20 at 6:28
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    @Aquarius_Girl added an image to visualize the grips I'm asking about :)
    – Roqux
    Aug 31 '20 at 21:02
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    @virolino That answer is useful, however it appears to be comparing basic tripod to extended tripod. I would like to focus on the overhand grip (added an image to help visualize the grips I'm asking about).
    – Roqux
    Aug 31 '20 at 21:04
  • @Tyler: now I understand your issue better. Thank you.
    – virolino
    Sep 1 '20 at 11:22
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The tripod grips are used mostly for drawing "lines", whether plain writing of text, or drawing contours.

However, the overhand grip is used mostly for filling areas, e.g. backgrounds. This grip keeps the tip away from the drawing surface, allowing the side of the pencil (or drawing tool in general) to contact the paper. The result is a more uniform spread of the "color".

Which joint should I mostly be using with an overhand grip? (wrist / elbow / shoulder / a combination).

It depends on the several factors, e.g.:

  • your position on the chair;
  • the size and shape of the drawing area;
  • the specifics of the "pencil";
  • what is comfortable for you;
  • what result you want to get; moving different joints results in different spread of the "color";
  • others.

Is this grip practical for painting? (or is it exclusive to dry medium)

It depends on the brush. If you use normal brush and any tripod grip, applying slightly more pressure results in the hairs bending and getting a result similar to the overhand grip.

Are there other benefits to using an overhand grip, apart from large flowing strokes?

Painting related: A special situation is when you need to add color inside a large, still wet area. In that case you will probably rest the wrist somewhere outside the painting, and use an overhand grip to apply the color to the desired area. If you need to draw a line in this situation, then it is quite likely that you will need to use a very thin brush, maybe even one with a bent "neck".

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