InkTober 2018 – Done!

This was my 4th InkTober. Last year I did ink wash portraits and I really learned a lot, but I also spend a grotesque amount of time on it. Although I loved doing the ink washes, and the end result, I really didn’t enjoy doing the underdrawings. I was doing them with grids and was spending more time fine tuning them, then I did on the ink washes. It felt like copying, not drawing, which I in essence it is. Using a grid can be great when the likeness have to be spot on, like a family portrait, but for me it became a bad habit I didn’t enjoy and I almost haven’t drawn since December.

So it was time for change; I still wanted to do portraits but without the grid and faster, trying not to be too fussy about likeness;

-Block in in pencil, ink with fountain pen
-Draw fast
-No grids, only tool for measuring is my pencil
-Shade with hatching trying to use as few strokes as possible

I quickly switched to finelines because the fountain pen was skipping a lot when drawing on top of the pencil in my very cheap 20x20cm sketchbook. Time wise it was a disaster again this year but I did loose the bad habit using a grid when doing the underdrawings. Blocking in instead of doing a more or less a finished contour drawing as an underdrawing and hatching with as few lines as possible where a limited success. I did get a little faster and the hatching a bit lighter and looser but not much. But all that said, I do like the style with the blue underdrawing and ink that developed over the month.

I just picked up a book about drawing portraits hoping that the method it uses can help me further, but I probably need professional help to fix this so I’ll also start looking for portrait drawing classes with live models.

My usual ramblings/comments to the daily drawings are under the gallery.

Continue reading “InkTober 2018 – Done!”

One Week 100 People – take two

I somehow ended up in a drawing funk for 2 months. To try to get out of it I did another round of OneWeek100People last week – this time only doing continuous line portraits directly in fountain pen to save time.

100 done, 2 full sketch books in one week!

After the first 75 I was getting slower trying to be more accurate so I started to use a Japanese extra fine fountain pen (much finer than a european EF ). Started to draw much faster going over the same lines several times. I like the result, the drawings got faster and a bit looser again.

It’s been great drawing again and it’s completely surreal to look at 2 full sketchbooks and realise that I filled them in just 5 days…

I normally always draw an underdrawing in pencil – which can make the drawings a bit stiff/tight – and I’m generally very slow at drawing. The continuous line drawings have been a great exercise for loosening up and starting to draw directly in ink. I’m only posting a few of the drawings – they are a great exercise but not necessary very interesting for everyone else to look at – to quote my son; some of them are epic fails.

I also added my first two attempts drawing/painting with Aero Color acrylic inks. Great fun, but I don’t really have a clue what I’m doing yet. It was very hard controlling the amount of water, the inks where much more saturated than I expected. It’s really hard/strange for me not to use any lines but since I’m trying to draw looser and lose the contour lines it was a great exercise too. Can’t all be ink so the last drawing was mostly done with my favourite pencil; Polychromos dark indigo. I really like the photo, it’s been in my queue for quite a while. Didn’t quite capture what I wanted to in the face so I might take another stab at it another day. I drew the eyes quite wonky but I almost saved it by placing one set of eyelashes high and the other one low 😉

Sktchy30 drawings in April

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.

One Week 100 People 2017 – 100 done!

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.

Day one:

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.

Day two:

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.

Day three:

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…

Day four:

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…

Day five:

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 🙂

Daily drawings – now with 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.