In life drawing Monday night I experienced a hand drawing failure. Every hand I drew looked horrible even though I tried all the techniques I know about drawing hands. Some bad hands I just covered up with gesso (white opaque paint stuff used to prime canvas) and I even collaged some paper over a hand in the drawing. I told students that they can do this for their long final drawing. Glue fresh paper to parts of the drawing, let dry, draw over.
One of the mental techniques about hands is to think of them as a whole other body. Hands are expressive. They have their own gestures and can be used to express very strong sentiments: praying hands by Durer, punching hands in a comic book, or flowing hands in a hula dance.
I am going to go back to the drawings with a fresh mind and some warm up sketches and draw what I know about the structures of the hand.
Filling a sketchbook with just hands is a great way to understand the many forms they take.