August 2015

First off, I've got to apologize for the image quality this month - I don't have access to a scanner anymore, so I just had to snap some photos with my wife's camera. It'll do.

As for the sketches, my working with references through continued this month, and I saw improvement and had even more fun! I also started drawing faces from reference, which is much harder. Because faces are very complicated. Lots of very strange shapes that are trickier to simplify, if you ask me. As you'll see by clicking through the below images, I also spent some days drawing from my imagination rather than references. I've started focussing on one... focus... for smaller amounts of time. I'll do gestures, I'll do faces, I'll switch to faces, I'll do some stuff from my imagination. I mixed it up a lot this month, because I not only want to learn from the world around me but also from the world within.

You'll also see that I went back to the non-photo blue pencils to set a framework and for the first time, laid neater ink lines over them. That was really fun. It's cool to be more cavalier in finding the gesture or shape in blue and then, having found the right lines somewhere inside a bunch of wrong ones, clean them up with long strokes of the pen. And the blue contours underneath seem to give the doodles a little more depth and volume.

Of course, as I post these today, I'm more than halfway through another month and I continue to learn and play with different media - I've actually been drawing with mechanical pencils for about a week now... but I'll talk about that when the month is done and I post September's sketches.

Click below to browse

08.07.15 - I took about a week off from sketching, and it sure looks like I came back with force! Definitely some weak spots in there, but mostly, it looks like I know what I'm doing! Onward and upward!

08.08.15 - Five pages in one night, holy cow! Page one is mostly uninteresting, with page two not much better. I'll call these my warm-ups. It looks like I'm starting to feel it on page three, with the guitarist and kiss-blower tying for Most Natural Gesture. Pages four and five from this evening have several (comparatively) strong poses between them, but I think overall the previous day's drawing went better. Ah, well, you can't win 'em all. Onward and... laterally!

08.09.15 - Looks like I spent maybe forty-five minutes testing my imagination to see if it still knew anything about drawing faces. The usual weak spots are there, but I'm not totally bombing on any faces like I used to. When I first started, I'd be lucky to get two or three faces like this out of ten, so I'm definitely showing progress in the long game.

08.11.15 - 08.12.15 - Okay, first time trying a face from reference was drawing from a photo of my uncle. I was pleased with the result, so I went on to Quickposes and set up a 30 second timer to see how I'd do under pressure... And I surprised myself! Yeah, faces are hard, but when they look good, they look really good. On the final page from 8.12, I was looking at a reference just long enough to get an impression, then let what I've learned guide me through its execution. They ended up looking a lot different from the reference, but that was not unexpected, and I was not disappointed with the results of the experiment.

08.13.15 - 08.16.15 - Here are the last of my ink-only attempts. By this point, I was sure I'd gotten what I needed from it - that is, the confidence to just put lines down without worrying too much about how perfect they were. I'm more comfortable going for it and learning along the way. Also, I think some of the best faces I've drawn so far are on these pages.

8.16.15 - 08.18.15 - Oooh, something new! These pages were so much fun, and I think these are the best results I've had up to this point. Not much more to say about them than I already did up top, though.

08.19.15 - 08.31.15 - Continuing the blue lines + ink experiments, now with faces. Only one page of photo references, with the rest coming either from my imagination, or from referencing drawings by other artists. Can you believe that after all these months, I still haven't spent any time trying to learn about drawing hair? Well, a quick glance at my "from the imagination" drawings should convince you. If nothing else helps you pick them out, the hair certainly will. Maybe September will be the month for it...


Earlier sketches

JULY 2015

JUNE 2015

Even earlier sketchdump collages are still available in the blog, but to get those early pages' presentation consistent with the function and feeling I want for this section of the website, I'll need to take some decent pictures of them and editorialize on my progress and what I was learning along the way. So for now (seeming more and more like forever as time goes on), I'll just leave it at...

Coming soon