And Now with Mechanical Pencil

Preston with Bowtie, 9″ x 12″ pencil

I’ll be honest, I don’t know why I keep drawing flowers on their noses and hair. I kind of dig it. This one I think is not quite as nice as my first very serious fur attempt, but he has some excellent qualities.

I picked up an 005 mechanical pencil with HB lead and I love it! I don’t have to sharpen it! But, sometimes you have to let more lead out instead of scratching stuff up and not realizing you have to let more lead out. Haha. I also got some of these tortillions but didn’t have them handy and the q-tip continued to be a fine alternative. (Don’t you love supplies with fancy names that don’t cost an arm and a leg!)

As a side note, it has sadly come to my attention that all of my old gallery slideshows of work in progress no longer work. When I first started in 2011 the whole process was SO TEDIOUS with the scanning and re-sizing and cleaning up and re-naming and posting holy cow. But I learned things and some people liked the things, and that’s great! And now, to new things! With mechanical pencils sometimes!

Thanks for dropping in! Hello to Paint Party Friday!

Fur & Hair, Adventures in Pencil

This was supposed to be the year of acrylic painting (and may yet be), but January has mostly been the month of the pencil! Most recently, in a break from watching Poirot reruns, I have been watching hair and fur tutorial and speed-drawing videos. Here is my first serious attempt! Took about four hours of layering, and is missing a bit of brightness.

Grady's Coiffure, 9" x 12" pencil

Grady’s Coiffure, 9″ x 12″ pencil

I think Grady’s got a bit of a Seussian aspect, but with fancier hair!

Pencils: 2H, F, B, 2B (because that’s what I had handy) I did not get a blending stump (tortillon) but one of the videos suggested a q-tip and it worked pretty well. I also found a kneaded eraser but need more practice with it. I am going to pick up a couple mechanical pencils and try those, and I also need some darker pencils, maybe a 4B or 6B. Darker is better but I fear the smudging! I really need to be more conscious of the smudge guard I try to use.

Some related videos I found very helpful:

LethalChris Drawing:
How to Draw a Bear, How to Draw a Panda Bear, How to Draw Realistic Hair

Proko, How to Draw Hair (I’ve mentioned Proko before. He is charming and a great teacher.)

Daisy van den Berg, Drawing Fur (dog)

Mark Crilley, How to Draw a Kitten

Fine Art Tips, How to Draw a Mouse with a Mechanical Pencil

Do you have any favorite youtube art channels? Please share! Thanks for stopping by!

Fanciful Pencil Beasts!

Horace and Friends 9" x 12" pencil

Horace and Friends, 9″ x 12″ pencil

Lots of drawing in pencil continues! All 9″ x 12″ as I work through some Bristol board drawing pads. These are I think the better ones, each done in an evening or sometimes two. (I post more frequently on my Facebook page .)

I do have a new painting started though I have yet to work out a consistent painting schedule. Do I need a schedule? It seems like maybe I do. Thanks so much for dropping by!

Horace and Friends 9" x 12" pencil and 12" x 12" early painting stage

Horace and Friends
9″ x 12″ pencil and 12″ x 12″ early painting stage

 

Continued Acrylics – with progress shots

Acrylic painting and pencil sketching continue.

11" x 14" Acrylics, in progress

11″ x 14″ Acrylics, in progress

This one is feeling much more forced than the last one! Probably overthinking things. The black outline was not the best move, but it will probably see a lot of changes yet.

And these are two favorite recent sketches. I am finally using a piece of paper as a smudge guard. Hooray!

Horned Oracle, 9" x 12" pencil sketch

Horned Oracle, 9″ x 12″ pencil

Pavel's Pet Portrait Palace 9" x 12" pencil

Pavel’s Pet Portrait Palace, 9″ x 12″ pencil

I haven’t decided what to do with these, Copics won’t work with this much pencil and the Bristol is no good for acrylics. I could trace the outline on a new sheet, maybe. More likely I will just start the next one.

Thanks so much for dropping by! (All acrylic tips appreciated!)

Could it be an Acrylic Painting post? IT IS.

two painted beasts, omg. 11" x 14" Acrylics

two painted beasts, omg.
11″ x 14″ Acrylics

Wooo, I’ve been painting! And pretty big too, if you keep in mind I’ve been mostly drawing 2.5″ x 3.5″ art card size the last couple years.

Since my last progress shots post, some WordPress update business or another has removed my slideshow function. I may search out another for future posts, but here is a little gallery of shots. You can click on each to enlarge, but tragically you cannot page through them.

So, I was pretty happy at step seven. The next day, after a couple hours working at it (with some frustrations!), what a big difference! I still have to fix up the background. Might just cover the splatters, or might add something new. Or might start the next painting! Here’s a sneak preview:

11" x 14" sketch on canvas board

11″ x 14″ sketch on canvas board

Thanks so much for dropping in! Please, please feel free and encouraged to drop any and all acrylic painting tips in the comments. I’m a bit of a hack at it still, and probably will be for another few years. (But that’ s ok!) :-)

January One, Sketches and Musings

Horace with Friends, 6" x 6" pencil sketch

Horace with Friends, 6″ x 6″ pencil sketch (with lots of smudging, d’oh)

When she saw that Horace was feeling melancholy, Gina called in the troops to cheer him up. Just moments after this image was captured, Horace cheered up immeasurably, grabbed his bright green mandolin, and led them in a rousing rendition of “I Want to Be Your Friend” by 11 Acorn Lane.  Gina beakily provided horn accompaniment, while Oditi (far left) insisted on repeating the  Deedlee-doo, Deedlee-dee bit. They jumped and clapped and spun around.

Happy January 1! The year ahead is filled with promise, opportunity and undreamt surprises. New discoveries, rediscoveries and unwelcome news. Birthdays, lazy Saturdays, and days when the sun will seemingly fail to shine.

But you are here! Thank you for coming. I hope this year holds lots of the good things and less of the bad things, for everyone. More recent sketching below.

Two sketch Dec 26 2015

2 with Birds, 6" x 6" pencil sketches

2 with Birds, 6″ x 6″ pencil sketches

And then there were fish, and things became muddled. pencil sketch, 5" x 7"

And then there were fish, and things became muddled.
pencil sketch, 5″ x 7″

 

 

Poirot and Me

There is a moment in season 8, episode 1* (“Evil Under the Sun”) when David Suchet’s Poirot says, The murder that took place here was the work of a mind that was brilliant. But there is one thing that the killer did not expect, ah? The mind of Hercule Poirot. Es bien? Now is the time for these two minds to meet and the truth at last must come to light.

David Suchet's Hercule Poirot, sketch in progress, 6" x 6"

David Suchet’s Hercule Poirot, sketch in progress, 6″ x 6″

His eyes twinkle, as they often do, and he manages to suppress all but a momentary hint of a smile. The denouement is imminent. The Good Guy shall unmask the killer! after a careful reconstruction of (re-enacted) events. So satisfying. I mean really. Not to mention the charming cast, the British accents (and terrible, hilarious American ones), and a peek into the imperfect lives of the upper crust. (Spoiler: They are crusty. In more ways than one. Gross.) No seriously, even rich people have problems/can be nice/aren’t monsters.(?)

In any case, since the Bad Guys often seem to be winning in the world we actually inhabit, I enjoy the quiet inevitability of the triumphant Belgian.

For this sketch I decided not to look at a static photo, but to watch the show and watch him in action. I got to concentrate on a whole range of expressed emotions, and study all his features from many angles, which I found helpful. It needs work. Or I may start a new one. Either way, expect more Poirot portraiture at this address. :)

I apologize if you are unfamiliar with the show and I totally bored you to death. But you would like it. Who wouldn’t like it?! I am currently watching (the second time through) via Netflix. Thanks for dropping in!

*Agatha Christie’s Poirot

More Fluffy Things! And Still in December!

Thank you so kindly to all you folks who came to visit my neglected blog for my last post! I have been inspired to do another in (comparatively) record time!

Some of the fluffy critters have been colored! Colored pencils and Copics.

Three in Color Each 2.5" x 3.5" Copics, Prismacolors, ink

Three in Color, each 2.5″ x 3.5″ Copics, Prismacolors, ink

Some new ones have been made in larger sizes (gasp!)

Three 5x7 pencil sketches, Dec 2015

Three 5×7 pencil sketches, Dec 2015

I am fond of this fellow. Perhaps it’s the teeth?

IMG

Wulfrid, 7″ x 5″ pencil sketch

Wulfrid is both friendly and adaptable, though he has been known to spit at squirrels. Squirrels on the other side of the sliding glass door. So, lots of spit on the sliding glass door! But otherwise extremely sweet and only sheds ten months of the year.

Thank you for dropping in! it’s nice to have a community of bloggers, even if it means checking in just a few times a year. More is always nice! But as noted ad infinitum, one does not always have the time for the things one wishes to do. (Like more progress slideshows. Maybe next time!) Happy Hannukah and Christmas and Solistice and all the other things!

 

 

Fluffy and Big-Nose Sketching, for December

Hello! Thank you for stopping by my neglected (again!) blog! I also have a neglected Tumblr and Flickr account. Woo! I do try to post new art to Facebook, if you want to see more things.

It is December 13th. I wanted to write a book this year, and though I did not finish a book, the plan to write a book actually did spur some book-related writing! So, now instead of a vague idea for a book, I have 3-5 ideas and some scribbles to go with each!

Meanwhile, I’ve been sketching a variety of big-nose and fluffy creatures, while watching my current favorite show in all of the universe – Agatha Christie’s Poirot. I don’t know if the show has influenced the drawings, but if so, I don’t mind!

Pencil sketches, 2.5" x 3.5", Poirot set one

Pencil sketches, 2.5″ x 3.5″, Poirot set one

Pencil sketches, 2.5" x 3.5", Poirot set two

Pencil sketches, 2.5″ x 3.5″, Poirot set two

Pencil sketches, 2.5" x 3.5", Poirot set three!

Pencil sketches, 2.5″ x 3.5″, Poirot set three (includes one in color from set 1)!

Pencil sketches, 2.5" x 3.5", Poirot set four

Pencil sketches, 2.5″ x 3.5″, Poirot set four

I have this idea to paint some of these characters, likely in acrylics. But as some of you may know, I have had the HARDEST time getting myself to start painting. It’s the whole – tons of supplies to set up, cleaning up, the brushes the mess, oh my! But it could happen. And if it does, I shall post about it here.

Thank you kindly for stopping by! If it’s your first visit, I will try not to wait another six weeks for the next posting! If you’ve been here before and returned, thank you ever so kindly. You’re all the very best. :)

 

Well Hello There, November

Wow, two months since my last post! I believe that is the longest I have gone since the first one back in May, 2011. If you’ve come to visit, welcome! If you’ve come BACK to visit, welcome and thank you!

Most recently, over at the trading site illustratedatcs.com, I’ve been doing tons of Halloween-themed art cards. Some of my faves:

Six Halloween Art Cards Pen, Pencil, Copic markers, gel pen

Six Halloween Art Cards, each 2.5″ x 3.5″
Pen, Pencil, Copic markers, gel pen

House listing:  Quaint fixer-upper in quiet neighborhood with the occasional homicidal ghost.

Also a little bare-breasted ghost, a dragon in mostly pen and pencil, a magic amulet, a scarecrow, and a teeny pumpkin house with some potted candy corn flowers. Sounds like Halloween to me! Mostly cute Halloween, admittedly.

So last time I was hinting about writing a book. I have not forgotten. Or gotten very far. Lots of life goes on while one is trying to, you know, do stuff. On the other hand, I have some new ideas! We’ll have to see how it goes. :)

Thanks so much for stopping by! Happy November!