Candy Skull Errors

In the run up to Hallow this year I drew a fairly basic ink drawing of a candy skull. I think the idea was OK but I crashed and burned on the execution. This is just one of those pieces that I couldn’t get right.

Here is the linework…

I tried to add some tone using pencils…

However, I really really disliked this. The sharp clarity of the ink lines clashed in a horrible way with the more expressive pencils. So I rubbed all of the tone out.

Then I scanned in my linework and added my tones digitally. This worked much more harmoniously with the linework…

However the execution was still poor since I had tried to tone this image really quickly and didn’t make a proper set of flats before getting into it. (“Flatting” an image is where you use various flat tones or colours to separate out sections of the picture for easy selection when actually painting.) I was feeling ill and wanted to tone this image quickly and skipped this step. With hind sight this was a terrible move since I ended up reselecting multiple selections multiple times by hand and making a bad job of it.

I didn’t even stop there – I then compounded my error by using the poorly executed digitally toned image as a basis for quickly adding some colour!

Overall, I think the biggest lessons I learned from all of this are to avoid creative work when I’m feverish and that “short cuts make long delays” Oh well, we all have rough spots from time to time! 🙄

Turtle Time!

This was an ink drawing I made at a Mind Art Group I attend during the week. I began with some basic shapes…

…Then added some more details to my sketch…

Then I inked my drawing. Here is the final artwork in my sketchbook…

However I wanted to see if I could take the image further digitally. Here is how that turned out…

For once I actually prefer the digitally adjusted drawing rather than the original. What do you think?

The millennium Falcon

This is the longest project I have ever done, not because it was particularly difficult, but because my physical illness has wrecked my ability to sit for any period of time and my mental health issues have eaten my concentration for breakfast. When I was well I would finish a detailed A3 drawing like this in 2 weeks as well as working part time in school and looking after myself and my son. Things are so different now. I have carers to help me do basic things, my son is living in his own home and my mind feels like a bomb has gone off. 2 weeks turned into 6 months.

I made this drawing for my living room. I have some beautiful bright green patterned curtains in this room and wanted some Star Wars art to match. So I decided to draw a Millennium Falcon and then paint it green using watercolours.

I began by working out the scale I was going to expand my reference to. I drew some basic structural lines across my reference and then calculated how big those lines would be scaled up to A3…

Then I drew the basic reference structure out at the correct size on my A3 paper. Once I had the basic structure down I took it section by section, drawing in the details in pencil and then inking them when I was happy with them. Here you can see some of the basic reference structure and the first section of the inks…

Here’s my process in more detail, drawing the structures in pencil…

…and then inking that section…

For most of time I wasn’t able to do any of it. This got worse as the project neared completion because I was conscious that I wasn’t able to function so well and I really didn’t want to make some horrible mistake and ruin the whole thing.

I toned the image with pencils. Looking back I think black watercolour would have been much better but when I was working on this bit I didn’t trust myself with a medium which couldn’t be erased.

Here’s the finished drawing…

Then when I was next able to give it a go I painted a wash using greens yellows and blues over the whole thing and added a few details once the wash was completely dry.

Here’s the final picture…

May the Force be with you.

Schnauzer – Ink and Pencil

This week’s drawing is of a little miniature schnauzer. My Bonnie was one of these happy little dogs. I still can’t see a schnauzer anywhere without feeling a pang of sadness from losing her. She was the best little dog in the world.

I began with some very basic shapes just outlining the main dimensions and general fluffiness(!)…

Next I filled out the pencils and made some more definite marks outlining and defining my little dog…

Once the pencils were done I moved onto the inks. Trying to capture the softness of the pencils with a medium as hard and fast as ink was difficult. Looking back now, I wonder if using water soluble ink and deliberately smudging the ink would help. I think I might give this a go another time. It’s certainly something I’d like to play with.

Once my inks were complete I added pencil as a half tone to round out the image and to provide a soft shadow. Here’s the finished drawing…