My daily drawings during April have all been part of Sktcy’s #sktchy30 drawing challenge. It’s been a great experience and another month of drawing portraits has definitely helped me improve. All the drawings were done in a 19x19cm Seawhite of Brighton sketchbook. The paper is all media and I used just about everything in it (even spray paint) and I finally started experimenting with ink and water washes – something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.
Never before have I drawn as much as i did in the last month. Apart from the 100 people in 1 week I also kept up the daily drawings. Some days I started to practice life drawing so I can start putting some bodies under the faces I’m drawing. So far I’m only drawing from video on Croquis-cafe. They have some great recordings of 10 poses in 20 minutes, it’s sort of like a traditional figure drawing class. They are also great if after a long day I still haven’t done my daily drawing, then I just start one of the videos and know that I’ll be done in 20 minutes. I already filled a pile of A2 sheets with quick sketches. They’r great practice, but not interesting enough to post.
Today I filled the last page in my sketch book. The next sketchbook should behave better with wet media, so hopefully I can have some fun with watercolours and ink washes too. Hope it’s good because it has 95 sheets in it so I’ll be carrying it around for a long time – even with a daily drawing.
Sktchy are doing a drawing challenge in April where they send a daily assignment. I of course joined, now I won’t have to worry about what to draw all month 😉
Since I’m really slow at drawing – and because it sounds like fun – I decided to taking on the Marc Taro Holmes /Liz Steel #OneWeek100People2017 drawing challenge. The idea is simple; draw 100 people in 5 days. It sounds almost impossible to me but I’m gonna give it a stab anyway.
Phew, first 18 done – that was tough. I had this great plan about drawing in 3 passes, very loose using continuous line and drawing shadow shape. Unfortunately my brain keeps making me draw contour lines instead. The idea was to do them in 4 min. each and I am really having problems just getting them under 10. I’ll have a big problem making the 100 if I don’t get the speed up.
Speed improved a bit on the last 3 sheets. I am only using a mechanical pencil and a super fine Preppy fountain pen. Will be experimenting more with that again tomorrow. Drawing couples helped the speed a bit too. Still very far from my 4 minute goal. I really like the one with the 3 hat ladies.
59 done. Over half way there! Had a bit of a mid way crisis today, the first 3 sheets were really tough to get through. The underdrawing in pencil is going better, maybe I’ll just stay in pencil tomorrow. It’s also becoming harder finding sktchy images to draw – 100 is a lot…
81 Done. Markers from Letraset’s closing sale arrived today so I got a bit distracted playing with them. In a bit of a panic about tomorrow, only 3 Sktchy photos lined up – need to find 16 more…
I did it – 100 people in 5 days. The house looks like a war zone and the washing bin and inbox is overflowing but that will all have to wait till tomorrow – I think I earned that cold beer in the fridge now. To save time today I just left the pencil in and didn’t add any hatching or colour on some of the sheets. The last sheet is the same as the first. I wanted to see the improvement. Speed has improved but not that much, accuracy has gone up though. Drawing the figure in the background went completely pear shaped because I was getting really stressed about beating the stopwatch. She ended up with a face like a smiley and I tried to fix it with a post-it note 🙂
I finished my February Faces challenge yesterday! I drew 28 people in February. I have now drawn a face every day since mid-January. Before that I didn’t have the courage to draw people. I am really surprised at just how clear the improvement has been in just 7 weeks.
Doing a 1 hour still life drawing Monday I also noticed that I have become much better/faster at constantly checking and correcting my measurements. A bit of an ekstra bonus, I hadn’t expected drawing from photo reference would also helping my live drawing.
The drawings have been taking longer and longer to finish. I’m considering taking on the Marc Taro Holmes /Liz Steel #OneWeek100People2017 challenge in March. Not sure about 20 a day but it would definitely help my drawing speed. Drawing the sketches a bit smaller directly in ink and it might just be possible – but not necessarily very pretty.
The Sktchy app has been a huge help in this challenge, making it super easy to find someone to draw so I could spend the time drawing instead of getting lost searching the net. I can highly recommend the app if you are looking for people to draw or inspiration – or if you would like someone to draw you. It’s very much like Instagram; some upload photos, some drawings. There is also a very friendly and supportive community there. (sktchy: @Svend Soenderby)
I can highly recommend doing a drawing challenge if you want to get better at/learn how to draw. Do InkTober, MarchofRobots, FebruaryFaces, OneWeek100People, 356drawings, dinovember or just make up a new one that suits you. Just decide to do it and stick with it. Jake Parker, who started InkTober, talks about drawing challenges here (it’s very long so draw while listening to it). I believe the only way to learn how to draw is by doing it – a lot. Actually, just stop surfing and start drawing now.
I’ll will continue to draw daily and I plan to do 2-3 Sktchy drawings a week.
Drawings from January:
The 28 February Faces:
Still doing my daily drawing, managed to do one for every day of January. I finally built up the courage to start drawing faces. Warmed up with a few cartoon faces and then started drawing from photos – apart from the very first drawing and 4 Andy Warhole polaroids – all the reference photos are from the Sktchy app. I can highly recommend the app if you are looking for people to draw/inspiration – or if you would like someone to draw you. It’s very much like Instagram; some upload photos, some drawings or both. The two are linked, just swipe to the right on a drawing and you can see the reference photo used for the drawing. (sktchy: @Svend Soenderby)
I also gave my self a challenge to draw a face every day of February. I even gave it a fancy name/tag #FebruaryFaces only to discover that I was very far from the first to come up with this brilliant idea – but the more the merrier 🙂 I have basically already been drawing faces for a month now, and it is really helping my drawing. Hopefully I’ll have 28 to show at the end of February.