Category Archives: Drawing


This was a portrait that I never really seemed to get into the groove with.  I missed some sessions because I was traveling for work.  And the there were holidays.  I usually start with drawings, but since my schedule was I erratic, I did some drawings, a few quick water colors and a sketch portrait sculpture. 

Some of the sketches turned out well though.  When I starting a sculpture, I will draw the model from multiple angles.  Not only I do I get more practice at ‘seeing’ the model, but I can also get a better sense of form.  Once I create a sculpture, I will often go back to these original drawings for reference.  In the drawing below I also did an anatomy drawing to better interpret what ‘all those bumps and shadows’ were. 

All of these sketches are intended to help me understand what I am looking at.  As such they are focused on planes and form, rather than line or tone.

In these drawing and painting sketches you can see what the entire pose was.  As I mentioned previously, I didn’t have time to put together the whole figure, so a portrait sketch is where I wrapped it up.

Sketchbook – 26-NOV-2011

I’m almost exclusively drawing in my sketchbook at this point.  With the new baby and work, there isn’t much time left for larger projects.  I would really like to get back to sculpture, but for me, it all starts with drawing.  The power is in the original sketch.  If the drawing is weak, the subsequent painting or sculpture will be weak.  For me, I look at drawing as practicing the beginning over and over.  It is tremendously satisfying.  I don’t have to get caught up in the fussiness of rendering or coloring.  I need to work on both of those as well, but for now, these drawings capture my intent.

I am also making a concerted effort to memorize more anatomy.  I have the major muscles and bones memorized.  Now I’m working on the smaller, less obvious ones.  In December, I’m going to focus on origins and insertions.  I really notice how much more confident my drawings are when I have an understanding of what I am looking at from the inside out.

One of my favorite things about drawing is when one line describes multiple forms overlapping each other.  In particular the way his left arm is resting on his leg.  The alternating of hard and soft as muscle rests against bone.
You can view more of my figure paintings and drawings.
As always, comments welcome.

Sketchbook – 01-AUG-2011

I am enjoying painting in watercolor lately.  Between work and family, I’m lucky if I get a couple hours a week to draw now, so I’ve had to reassess my medium(s).  So, I’m focusing on drawing and painting for now.
I liked how the two drawings below turned out and now that I have scanned them, I plan to go back and paint them, just to add some values.
For the two drawings below, I was focusing on line and line weight.

Sketchbook – 07-MAY-2011

Here are my sketches from today’s figure drawing.  I busted out the watercolors again.  It must be the sun out that encouraged it.  After so many years of drawing with the same group of people, its wonderful to see the figurative arts community solidifying and growing.

I’ve had an ongoing conversation with one of the artists that regularly goes to these sessions, about persevering even when you can’t seem to make a correct mark that day. I’ve taken on the motto, “Fail Boldly”. Look forward to an upcoming post where I will share some of my spectacular fails.

In the meantime, you can see more of my sketches here.

Comments welcome.

Figure Drawing – 05-MAR-2010

One of my figure drawings from yesterday.  The model that was scheduled flaked, and so we had a substitute.  Adrian has modeled before, and just happened to be there to do some drawing herself.  Thanks, Adrian for stepping in and being such a great model!

Adrian, Colored Pencil
I started to expand my palette a little bit with this one.  I used Pale Yellow for the highlights and Mauve for the shadows.  The Pale Yellow was perfect, but the Mauve ended up being a bit more warm than I would have preferred.  Practice, practice, practice…
You can see more of my figure drawing here.
Comments welcome.

Figure Drawing – 12-FEB-2011

Recent drawings from this weekend.

I’ve really been focusing on line lately.  Not just weight, but particularly direction.  Line that follows form builds form.  Cross-hatching or mono-directional lines flatten a drawing.  I’ve been experimenting with both.  Flat tones make for a stronger graphic image, but I really like the sculpted form of a drawing.  I’ve been looking at one of my favorite illustrators, Charles Dana Gibson recently, and really admire his fluidity.  Paul Calle is another illustrator who did beautiful drawings of form.  Of course, another favorite illustrator of min is Patrick Nagel, known for his very flat and graphic drawing.  Hence the conflict.
Comments welcome

You can see more of my figurative drawing here.

Digital figure drawing

Below are some of my latest experiments. I took my iPad to my weekly figure drawing session. I’ve really wanted to experiment with figure painting, but the sessions are much too short for that. So, I figured I would play with drawing on the iPad.

What is most interesting to me is how foreign it is. It really is like taking on an entirely new medium. A lot of my effort is just learning to use the software. I am currently using SketchBook Pro. I have used Brushes in the past. I find myself having to remind myself of basic drawing techniques, measuring, not zig-zagging lines, and pacing. The iPad CPU is not quite fast enough to keep up with me, so I have to slow down to get a smooth line. And of course, the iPad is not pressure sensitive. So that is a huge draw back, given that so much about drawing is modifying the pressure and angle of the drawing media.

Of course, one advantage is that I can go directly from iPad to blog. My previous attempts at going from sketchpad to blog have always required an interim scanner step, since the picture and lighting quality is so poor from my phone camera. Any interim steps means that updates vary from weeks to never.

I doubt that this approach will ever replace my use of traditional media. There is something still very gratifying about the hand-drawn line and stacks of sketchbooks. However, the ability to self-publish from anywhere is really appealing.

Comments welcome.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad