Once upon a time I challenged myself to fill an entire Moleskine with “art I wouldn’t be embarrassed to show people.” This challenged me to take time in laying out my drawings, and I filled the whole sketchbook for sure. This time, I wanted a new sketchbook with less intimidation (over 100 pages, and A5 size was big!) so I bought a three pack of the Moleskine Cahier 30 page Plain notebooks. The “plain” paper has always been my favorite for graphite, I really can’t find any that I love as much as this. So I’ve decided to fill her up. Here she is, 4 drawings in.
I challenge you to fill one of your own, and take enough time to make it “drawings you won’t be embarrassed to show.”
We will see how long it takes me to fill my own – just a small sketchbook of 3.5″ x 5″ and still a challenge! Wish me luck!
Drawings and sketches by working fine artist K.L. Britton
Lessons and Workshops:
I am using a lot of the line I was thinking about – however it’s competing with my wanting to continue my old style with the soft shadows. I am still working on it – but remember to think about where you’re going: Are you wanting to make this soft? Or dynamic? Are you wanting to make her edges hard or soft? What is the tone or mood? Can you tell what it is supposed to be when you see it from afar?
Here is another one I’m working on. I’ve started adding white chalk to this one to bring out the shape of her face as it turns toward the light on the side. I find many of my reference photos from the stock section of (of all places) deviantart. There is a bunch of crap to wade through, but occasionally there are some awesome costumed or portrait references, and I’ve used many of them (with credit and sent the finals to the original model and photographer.) As long as you’re careful to credit, it’s a great resource since there are so many visions on deviantart. One of the underrated places to find inspiration 😀
I’m really liking the toned charcoal Strathmore 500 paper that I’m using on these, and will post them when they are finished. I will do a proper review as well.
You can buy it here from Amazon
Thank you for reading.
This is a large, 12″ by 18″ drawing on a beautiful toned blue paper that I got from Top’s Art Supplies here in Koreatown. I love the paper so much I wanted to have some for home and some for the studio, but I’ve left most of it at the studio for now. I have been trying to get my hands on every painting and drawing video or workshop I can lately, and after being thwarted (Joseph Todorovich’s workshop full, Ramon Hurtado’s taking a break from classes) I remembered how much I wanted to see Teresa Oaxaca’s drawing video. Teresa’s video from East Oaks Studio is fantastic, she is great at expressing her thought process during the whole video, even the little details. She has such an incredible sense of line and form, and her draughtsmanship is second to none in her style. Watching her draw was awesome!
Here are some fantastic takeaways I got from the video (that I haven’t necessarily applied to my work.)
- Use different types of lines to differentiate the background from the focal point. Ex, use controlled straight lines for your subject, and use large and wiggly lines for a background.
- Get your bases in within the first thirty minutes. Things we don’t always think about right away – how will the background affect the foreground, when we’re too focused putting details in the face or eyes. Getting the background and subject in means we can focus more on relating those two, instead of just getting stuck in one place and not being able to blend.
Over all, this video is well worth the investment. It’s like taking one day of a workshop, a full demo, no cuts or anything, and so much information you should take notes. Great film.
Thank you for reading!
As you may know, I’ve been reading about an interesting style of sketching called “dynamic sketching.” It’s more for illustrators, but I’ve found it to be very great to help improve my regular paintings and works as well – instead of just copying what I see, I can make more decisions about form, and even focal point.
Here is a flower. Normally, I’d try to be exact to the original flower, and spend a tedious amount of time to get this much information in. But here, using kuretake clean color real brush, copic wide, white chalk, and staedtler pigment liners, I’ve drawn something in 5 minutes that has form and shape, and comes off the page. This is an important technique I teach my illustration students during class, as it helps them not only work quickly from life, but make changes and guesses when they’re drawing from their head.
That’s all for today!
It was a gorgeous Sunday, perfect for finding fu dogs in Chinatown for the new art school losangelesgalleryofart.com
Waiting for things to open (other than rainbow bakery, where I got the most delicious egg tart) means sketching in action.
View from the only shady bench.
A sketch from the morning.
Both done with Procreate on the iPad with the apple pen, which I have many complaints about, mostly regarding the battery draining when not in use.
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It was a gorgeous Saturday so I stopped by the ocean and the replica Greek palace, the Getty Villa. NBD, just another weekend in Cali.
The marble is cool and shady.
A little sketch of some trees and columns and roofing. Kuretake clean color real brush and staedtler pigment liners on toned paper. Out of all the things I am allergic to, I have the highest allergy to olive trees. They are, however, super gorgeous so I sketched them anyways.