Recent artwork update (November 7th 2023)

I've been focusing on longer pieces of work recently

Recent artwork update (November 7th 2023)

I’ve finally started drawing again, after what feels like too long a break.

Sometimes it seems that between work demands, family life, and everything else in between (like personal health) there’s little time left for art so I feel compelled to snatch what I can at the weekend.

This wasn’t too much of a problem when a drawing only took ten or twenty minutes but more recently, as I’ve been focusing on improving my portrait skills, the time it takes to complete a drawing has started stretching beyond minutes and into hours.

It’s exciting to find myself so absorbed in the creative process that time slips by and to see my skills are improving but there never seems to be enough hours in the day.

Nevertheless, I need to keep pushing myself to keep drawing because I’ve already discovered how easy it is to miss a week, then a month, and all too soon, years.

Cat Portrait and Sketchbook Drawing

Our family cat and a draw-this-in-your-style challengeOur family cat is getting on a bit now (she’s 12 years old) so I wanted to try drawing a portrait of her, partly just to see if I could do it. I’d drawn sketches of her before but never a full piece of work.

In total, the drawing took five hours, over two evenings. It’s a digital piece, drawn in Procreate with an Apple Pencil. I tend to draw on the iPad the same way as I’d draw on paper, limiting myself to black and white “inks”, and a single line brush. I don’t feel comfortable changing the way I draw to take advantage of shortcuts that might be available because I feel that drawing with a brush designed for rendering fur quickly won’t give results that look like my own hatching style.

I really enjoyed working on this one and I’m really happy with the result as it actually looks like her as opposied to a generic kitty drawing. View on Instagram

The DTIYS (Draw This in Your Style) challenge piece was in response to a regular feature on the Instagram accounts of Katie’s Brush and Nip and Jal Art 377.

I don’t, as a rule, draw buildings. They don’t particularly interest me (until they do) but I think it’s largely because I don’t feel comfortable drawing them. I guess that makes drawing them a challenge, then. :)

I decided to draw this one in my A5 sketchbook rather than digitally.

I found the source photo difficult to sketch as the angles seemed to defy logic and I must admit, I straightened a couple of them. I wish I’d rendered them in hatching rather than attempting to colour them (badly) with watercolour pencils. View on Instagram

Digital Protraits

A self protrait and a protrait of a Museum App muse I’ve never really tried to draw a self-portrait properly so I set myself the challenge of not only trying to draw myself, but to use a post that’s way out of my zone… something with hands.

I’m actually really pleased with how it turned out. It looks like me (which is, I suppose, the goal of any portrait) and I have hope that hands won’t always be my nemesis after this one. View on Instagram

Lorraine is a “muse” on an app called Museum. Museum was originally called Muse and is associated with the Sktchy art classes available online. The app enables anyone to install it and upload photographs of themselves for artists to draw.

Again, I’m really happy with the result. It took between five and six hours (largely due to hatching the hair) and I was very careful to establish the proportions to begin with, to make sure that things didn’t go pear-shaped once I started shading the image.

Like a lot of the drawings that I’ve done recently, this was drawn in Procreate, using the process I described above (limiting the tools and colours to an analogy of how I draw with traiditional pens). View on Instagram

Closing thoughts

I’ve drawn more over the last few weeks than I’ve been able to create in months so it’s encouraging to feel that creative passion beginning to return.

I’m going to push myself to keep drawing but I want to do more in my sketchbook as I feel that in my zeal to adopt digital methods, I’ve neglected traditional inking and I love hatching with a pen.

Plus, a sketchbook full of beautiful drawings is something I’ve never achieved in my entire life. Digital drawings are great but unless they’re printed and bound, they’re not really “there” in the sense that a complete book of drawings is.

You can find all my recent drawings on my Instagram account. I’m pretty active on Threads too.

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