Sunday, October 27, 2013

Sketching hands etc

I did some practice on drawing hands, by sketching hands from a DIY building manual. 

Although I didn't come away with a sense of being any better at drawing hands, I did find drawing the hands in the quick sketch below went heaps better than it normally does.

The road to Sunrise Hut, North Island, New Zealand

Friday, October 25, 2013

Tv sketches #3

Some more tv sketches from the same programme as yesterday. I still pressed pause far too often, particularly for the top two sketches. 

In a pen sketch, I can't draw the measurement lines of the face so much, which kind of influences the technique. For a super quick sketch (probably in pencil), I would draw the shape of the head and get as many measurement lines down as possible (eye line, nose line, mouth line, centre vertical line) and then draw the features. Once these are down, even if the person is gone, I can pretty much remember the rest of their details. If I have longer, and I am working in pen (without drawing in guiding lines), I find it easier to draw the shape of the hair, then the eyebrows, eyes, and work down the face towards the chin.

 A stationmaster. Artline 0.4 pen. Although I like the fine line of the 0.05 pen, the ink just doesn't flow quickly enough to sketch as fast as I need to to catch things on paper, and the Artline 0.4 works better.

One of the guys being interviewed. The marks on his shirt are actually an unsuccessful sketch upside down. I had only just meant to practise drawing his eyes better in a small blank space in my sketchbook, but when it went OK went on to draw the rest of the scene... Staedler technical pen 0.05, and an Artline 0.4 pen.

An old lady at a coffee break. Artline 0.4 pen.

A guy at a bar. Artline 0.4 pen.

Looks human, but was a very bad likeness for the person I was actually trying to draw! Artline 0.4 pen.

A gratuitous photo of Castlepoint, North Island, New Zealand.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Tv sketches #2

Well, these probably only loosely classify as tv sketches, as I hit the pause button more than I would have liked to.

I'm pretty happy with these ones above. They are very tiny pen sketches (Artline 0.4 Fine pen) , and it is easy to lose the subject's emotion or expression in such small sketches. But I think the seriousness on the interviewee's face still comes through in the sketch.

A gratuitous pic of Whakapapa Skifield, Mt Ruapehu, North Island, NZ

Friday, October 18, 2013

Worldwide Sketchcrawl # 41: Wellington

I went to the Wellington Sketchers meetup for the Worldwide Sketchcrawl #41 and spent a lovely morning sketching with Jon, while my kids played on the beach. I was so glad that the weather turned out so well and that I came out to sketch this morning.

Days Bay Jetty

We sat on the jetty sketching and this was a great place to be: I could have drawn things from here all day. I sketched one of the houses across Days Bay.  I think this was the first time I did a whole sketch with my watercolor pencils on location, so that worked well.

There were a few fisherman on the end of the jetty, who are always great to sketch because you can often get a whole stance sketched before they move again.

The seagulls put on quite a performance for us, as they fought over titbits thrown to them by the fishermen.  I think we saw the full gamut of seagull communication this morning.

Last weekend, I made some pencil rolls for my watercolour pencils and they worked a treat today. Nothing blew away in the breeze, and I could see what colours I had on hand.

 Days Bay Jetty, looking inland.

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Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Watercolour sketches #1

A quick go at sketching a portrait with watercolours to test out the mixing of some new colours. And, now that I think of it, I think this is my very first watercolour portrait.  So I think for a first go, I am pretty happy with it! The original guy in the photo did have this googly, rather surprised, expression... Done on 105 gsm paper, which is why it is all buckled. 

Somewhere on the South Island

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

TV sketches #1

I decided to try my hand at sketching from TV. I guess this is easier than real life in the sense that you can stare at the person on the screen (in real life you often can't do that if they don't know you are sketching them). But on the other hand, when sketching from tv, you often only have 10-15 seconds to get a likeness.

The person being interviewed is at the top, and the interviewer is at the bottom of the page. I have to admit, it involved a couple of rewindings to get a longer view of the people! But I am pretty happy with the likenesses, given it is my first go at tv sketching.

I do feel they have more vitality than sketches done from a still photo. Although it is harder to do, I can see how a better likeness can be taken from a moving subject than from a photo: in real life, you can spot what a person's usual expression is because their face keeps returning to that expression, and it is that expression that you sketch. But I think a sketch still has to stand on its own as a good sketch or likeness. I don't think the fact of having done a sketch from real life makes a bad sketch any better to look at. So, lots of practice ahead...

The ones below are the ten bad sketches it took me to sketch the interviewer guy at the bottom of the above page. I think sketching someone so quickly involves spotting immediately what makes someone's unique face recognisable. In his case, it was the shape of his eyes, eyebrows, and nose, and it took me about ten dodgy sketches to spot that fact.  Also, when sketching this fast, I am still trying to figure out whether to sketch the hair and features first and then the shape of the face, or to do it the other way around.

The previous awful attempts...

A gratuitous photo of Rangitikei Gorge, taken from the train, central North Island, New Zealand

Monday, October 14, 2013

A face a day #30

A thunderstorm makes it way up the valley at sunset

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Thumbnail sketches

Some thumbnail sketches in pencil.


Above the treeline in the Tararua Ranges (above Powell Hut), Wairarapa region North Island, New Zealand

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Boy by the waterfront

A sketch of a boy on the Wellington waterfront, playing beside something. I think these big grey balls (and there are lots of them along the City to Sea Bridge) are actually lights, but I haven't been down in this area at night for years. This was sketched from a photo, not from real life.

A totally unrelated photo of St Andrew's Church at Pauatahanui, north of Wellington.