Thursday, August 25, 2011


I've been busy - my birthday having been on Friday.   I've tried my hand at a new technique - using different types of pencil.  My friend, Tym, guided me through purchasing a basic sketching kit, and together we set up a rudimentary pencil set.  Below are some of my efforts.   I started with basic shapes - squares, triangles, circles, cones, spheres and cylinders

 Then I tried my hand with a bit of perspective, starting with horizon lines and focus points.

 Finally I felt myself ready for a challenge.   My friend had dared me to draw a series of cubes of various heights in a two focal point perspective.  I felt a bit overwhelmed, but as I dug into it - i found it to be rewarding as I felt the mathematical principles of angles and parallel lines, coupled with the liberal use of an eraser bring this project to completion.  I'm rather proud of it.

As always, please comment and critique. I look forward to hearing what you think.  Until next time...

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Uploading Sketches

I've let myself down with not posting daily, and so have built up several sketches that I need to put forth.  The first are two sketches of things - a rubber duck and a teacup.

I tried sketching things I had in my office, the teacup, and putting something that an Office mate had on her desk in a new environment.  Simple sketches, to be sure, but they forced me to focus on composite shapes and working together.

In the next two sketches, I tried my hand at landscapes, drawing one from a picture of Santorini island and the other from an image in my mind.

I had a good deal of difficulty with the photo; I couldn't get the lines and angles to pop out right so that they showed the depth and complexity of the buildings.  The other was similar to one a few days ago, but trying to refine the ideas giving to me by critiques.

So - there is a bit of improvement I think - but lots left to do.  I'm going to attempt to work on figures next.  I have doubts as to how that will go, given past experience.  But past is not prologue, so we'll see how it plays out.

Until next time...

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Line Art Sketch

Feedback from some of my friends told me I needed to work on lines of action - general shapes before attempting what I did yesterday.  So with the scene I started a few days ago, I thought along the lines of my story.  Some action that would lend itself to that sort of exercise.  With that, I did the below sketch.

The scene is the discovery of the body.  I attempted to draw out general action lines - an officer pointing at something near the body.  A loved one screaming at the sight.  A gaggle of press flashing photographs, asking questions with a microphone of a cop that impeded their way.  Animals flying and peaking out to add more characters.  The light source was made so that I would start to sketch shadow placement, with relation to it, emphasizing foreground (the body, cop and screaming person) and background (the press and their herder).  It's a bit rough - but a bit more complex than previously - forcing me to put more thought into placement.

Let me know what you think - how it could be done better.

Until next time...

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

A study on Animals

I pulled out one of my old drawing books, trying to find ideas in sketching.  It was a cute book of baby animals.  I picked a page at random and began sketching.  The results are below.  I look at this and wonder, how can i do it better?  How do I make that leap from copying what someone else drew as instruction to creating my own works with a style I can enjoy?

That's part of why I'm following my friend's advice and doing this daily - because the only way I know that will answer those questions (sort of) is to practice and practice more.  It's a lot to take in - drawing shapes, melding them together, fitting the proportion right to one another, and then creating the details, the shading, the nuances that make a flat character become art.

I don't know how they do it - but artists, cartoonists, creators have me enthralled by their gifts.  I hope that I can improve to at least mimic their quality, if not their unique style.  So, I shall continue to practice and see where it leads me.

Until next time...

Monday, August 1, 2011

A Scene in progress

So - I want to create a novel.  I have many ideas, and all of them seem awesome, but putting pen to paper and finishing the task has eluded me thus far.  To that end, one of the books I'm reading to help me establish characters, setting and plot advised me to create the scene visually and let that guide me in writing.

A two for one deal for me - practicing writing and sketching at the same time!  So here's my attempt:

Bread.   The smell of fresh baked bread wafted in through the open window from the bakery next door.  It squatted on the corner of my lane, and being only a single floor high, it allowed the eastern sky to blaze into my second floor bedroom.  From the garden across the street, the smell of jasmine and honey mixed into the morning's perfume.  The streets themselves began waking up, with carts and cars traveling slowly along the beaten track.  Their new engines, a marvel of modern ingenuity, chugged softly bringing the merchants some of their wares to sell.  Along the Via Tusca, heading north, farmers brought the butchers and dairymen the food for the morning meals.  Slowly, Rome woke up to a new day.

Here it is, a little preview of what I'm working up.  My thoughts are running in a fantasy - where a culture exists that is a mix between Roman and Steampunk.  For the sketch, I see a few issues - the shading is non-existent or incorrectly made.  The buildings are blocks that have no characters.  I have problems with the perspectives - trying to maintain a common view point.  Proportionally, I think i messed up - and it still looks too flat.  But, it is a start.

As always - comments are greatly appreciated.  Until the next time...

Sketch Day 2

So at the behest of the drawing books, and as the advice of my friend, I attempted various shapes - looking at how various shapes can be drawn, and how they work in various forms with each other.  I harbor no illusions that I have any mastery, but I did learn a little how I need improvement.  Shading for me is right out, and I still have a hard time pushing the three-dimensional envelope to make a sketch pop out.  So, without further adieu, here is today's sketch sheet.  As always - comments are appreciated.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

A Sketch a Day

A dear friend of mine challenged me to draw each day, developing techniques and workmanship for creating art.  His blog is nihil sine linea, and I have always enjoyed watching him create and produce fine art.  I've always envied those men and women, the artists that could create fantastic scenes of life or imagination to share with the world.  My favorite artists have been those who create unique pictures, framed in new ways.  Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, DaVinci, Raphael, Michelangelo and many others convey without words the beauty and majesty of the world that surrounds us and the life therein.  So I will post the foray into the art world here and see what comes of it.  If you wish - please comment.  I enjoy feedback.
Until the next time...