So....I bought some technical pens, which I really can't afford, but damn, it's hard to resist art supplies. I also bought some arty kinds of books. This is an exercise from one of them--Keys to Imaginative Drawing by someone Dodson. I have his other book, Keys to Drawing, which I think is one of the best drawing books around.
The idea here is to push yourself away from absolute representational realism into more manipulation of images. For the exercise, you take a photo (or a real person) and do a blind contour drawing or very quick sketch, and then use those distortions as the outline and do as realistic rendering as possible from the photo or person, but the whole thing is skewed. I actually really really like these. I used my new technical pens.