January 29, 2014

Drawspace lesson M05: How to draw a Black Widow.

So... why would one want to draw a spider? No Idea. I did a Spider illustration once and I still love that one. So I'd love to say that it is to be a piece of cake for me, but I can't. Because with pencil drawing things can become a bit complicated. Because of all the details, of course. :)

What I loved about this lesson is that it's full of interesting information about these spiders. I mean, spiders are not my top interest, so I guess I would never sit and read about them. But here, as you go through the lesson, the given info seems very nice. 
Because of the detailed shading required I used an Acid free 180gr A5 paper. Since I am not really familiar with spiders' body structure and with having a smaller sheet of paper I had to open the lesson's file twice. One for the finished drawing and the correct proportion and the other for the stages of shading.

To keep the correct proportion I first created a square and placed the upper part of its body in the squares center 8.

The paper was very absorbing and I made it smudgy with my hand.

I decided to do another Black widow sketch on a 125 gr paper (ref image here).

And another (see ref image here)

The last one was the easiest to do since I was familiar a bit with the form. And I'm also pretty ok with how it looks like. 

January 27, 2014

New working habits: what habits did I develop last year?

It's been a year of creation and learning. One of the things acquired where some new habits - both in blogging, drawing and life in general.

Here they are:
  1. Putting a tissue paper under the hand while shading to keep my hand and sketch - it's an obvious thing at the moment.
  2. Putting finished sketches in a see-through folder before scanning/putting away in a Task Done folder.
  3. Planning all my posts in advance. This way I have a dead-line schedule that keeps me going.  Just so you know, this post was finished and ready to be published one month before the actual publishing.
  4. Write down ideas as they come.  If in front of the computer, do it immediately! Just grab a pen and a paper or send yourself an SMS with a description draft of it the moment it's there! I've heard and read it so many times before: "I had an idea; I just can't remember it now!!!" or "I have no ideas, what should I write about/do?" This is a 100% prescription for a Writers' Block. I won't say it doesn't happen to me. It does, but way less now. And, btw, at the moment I have about 80 draft posts waiting to be published.  
  5. Working with a timer. Puts you in a great time frame, a real time saver.
  6. Making a general daily TO DO list; a daily planner that helps me to not ask myself the question "What should I do today?" Everything goes on that list: blogging, drawing, household choirs etc.
  7. Making ALL kinds of shopping lists, not only a grocery list. Like Shop in Ikea or Office Depot. This is something I started just recently and I find it VERY comfortable.
  8. I'm using pencils of different grades now. Even more, I have so many different pencils at the moment that I had to switch from one small pencil box to another, bigger one.
  9. Since I don't blind type, I tend to look at my keyboard, not my screen. The ideas to not get yourself busy with fixing all the spelling mistakes. You can deal with it after you finish your first draft. It's a real time saver.
  10. Work with a 2H pencil for the first sketch. There's no other way now :).
  11. Always read a lesson/a tutorial/a food recipe prior to doing the actual thing - draw/cook etc. Gives you a perspective on what you're about to do.
  12. When placing several objects always use a helping line. This one is very helpful when the composition gets complicated.
  13. Spell checking every post I published. Several times! Not in the same day!!! - I added this to the list after copy-pasting one of the post someplace else. I was shocked with the number of spelling mistakes I had in that post!!!! 
I'm sure there are many more, I could easily forgot some :)

And what about you? What are your new habits? How did you change your daily routine to make your life more comfortable and efficient?

January 23, 2014

Drawspace lesson M03: How to draw the eye of a dog - 2

This is the second lesson dedicated to a dog's eyes. (see first lesson here and my sketch here). M03 suggests drawing a Dalmatian's dog eye with some fur around it. The author explains about the anatomy of the eye and about its perspective.

So let's begin.
There are 3 sketches I'm about to do for this one.

First - some eyeballs in perspective.

After that came the eyeball itself. The example presented in the lesson is a full sketch by itself, so why not? I should be practicing as much as I can, shouldn't I?

And only after that came the core sketch of the lesson: the eye and the fur. It was an amazing chance to practice circular hand movement.

This is my mid step sketch. As required, I did a light blend with a tissue paper.

This is the second part.

I am not sure about the quality. I notice now that the eyelid is too dark compared to the eye itself. It almost seems as if the fur grows out of the eye and not covering it partly. I guess that I should have done the dark part not as crisp and sharp as I did but try to reverse the effect. That was the basic idea.

I might want to start using another, thicker paper and live the printing paper to simple sketches. I don't know, it might help. Or maybe it's just an excuse for a bad sketch? What do you think?

January 21, 2014

How to develop your creative thinking? Develipong creativity - new project for 2014.

In one of my previous posts I told you about a teenager girl I met once. She was 14 at a time, very active, very funny and very wise for her age. She told me that she has this habit of dedicating a year to study one subject. It could be anything from Geography to Medicine. I decided to adopt this idea and do the same.

Creativity and its development is one of the subjects I want to concentrate on this year. I will be collecting articles and exercises that could help me and you to become a more creative person. Also, of course, the idea is to read some books on the subject.

I will try to publish at least one exercise a month on the subject so in the end of the year we'll have a collection of useful exercises that will help us in different aspects of life. 

The first one was already published last year so go ahead and read it. I myself intend to use it at least once a month. That's the one for January.

The upper lines; that's all I could do in 1 minute. I actually felt quite bad because I couldn't fill more (and believe me, I didn't stop to think or erase stuff), so I decided to do another one, and keep filling the circles until I'm out of ideas.
So I set my timer to 5 minutes and the outcome is the rest of the circles.

I got a bit stuck on the fourth minute but then I thought, why thing inside the circle? I should draw outside it of it!! And this is when the Fish, the Bycicle and the Ice cream where done.

After that came the coffee cup and a doughnut.

So I guess it was pretty successful and I'm pretty pleased with myself.

January 19, 2014

Drawspace lesson M02: How to draw a wing.

Wow! I got cold feet only from looking at this lesson's sketch! But apparently, it's all pretty easy. All you have to remember is the structure of the wing itself. It has four parts and four kinds of different feathers (according to this lesson). Each part has different kind of feathers and they are responsible for different aspects in the bird's ability to fly. Also, one should remember that wings of those birds that fly high is different from wings of those who fly low etc.

I started checking for more wing photos for my challenge and found many drawings and schemes with very detailed explanation about the wing structure. Here's one of them. And another.

I did another sketch based on a wing painting by A. Durer. As for me - it's as good as drawing from a photograph. Durer, you know...).

I first made this "feather map" to make it easier as there are so many feathers to draw.

And this is the wing with feathers. At some point I even found myself counting feathers :)

The sketch is not final, it's 1/10 (or even less) way through, but I did want to try and sketch another wing. It doesn't look ok to me but it does look like a birds' wing. Which is cool at this point.

While making this little research I've learned some new stuff, besides trying to draw something new. It's nice to learn; I guess that if I wouldn't be doing these lessons I would never even think in checking on this stuff. So I'm thankful.

January 17, 2014

Drawspace lesson M01: How to draw a fur.

In lesson M01 we are suggested to draw a fur on a puppy's leg. The lesson is mostly about the shade and not the form. After all, drawing fur is just like shading.

This is the sketch I made after reading the lesson. I drew it, as suggested, from dark to light to dark and I hate it. 

I hate it not because of the shading itself, not at all!! While drawing, I've realized that it would look much better if I made a center guiding line, the one place the fur actually starts growing from. And it would be better if I did it from light to dark, as I usually do. This need might come from the luck of the experience. Or maybe not. Maybe it's just my way of working. I don't know. Anyway, after finishing the first sketch I decided to do another one, my way. That's the one and I think it looks way better.
Hopefully someday I'll draw a full dog and not just its leg :)

January 15, 2014

2014: The new Year's Resolution

Hi all!!!

It's a middle of January and it's time to make a new resolution list. 
So what are my plans? This and many more and I love it!!!

I started creating sometimes in summer adding to it items from my last year's resolution.
It grew over the months and became this.

  1. Learn to Airbrush.
  2. Learn blind typing.
  3. Learn to draw Dinosaurs.
  4. Learn to draw animals - http://www.howtodrawanimals.net/
  5. Illustrate children's book.
  6. Learn about Mesh tool in illustrator.
  7. Learn to draw with a ball pen or any other media which is not a pencil.
  8. Illustrate favorite recipes.
  9. Sketch, sketch, sketch! As much as possible.
  10. Learn to draw Chinese calendar characters.
  11. Finish the flower project this year.
  12. Work on portraits and human figure sketches.
  13. Be ready with holiday illustration at least 1 month in advance. 
  14. Complete Drawspace program and find another one.
  15. Become a regular on Illustration Friday.
  16. Learn to shade properly.
  17. Learn to draw water properly.
  18. Do Animal drawings.
  19. Follow a Shoo Ryner tuts on Youtube.
  20. Learn more about graphic design.
  21. Focus on creativity development.
  22. Learn to swim.
  23. Make a 30 circles in 1 minute a monthly exercise.
  24. Participate in drawing flashmobs.
  25. Get better in photography.
  26. Take animal photo shoot session in a local zoo.
  27. Keep developing my Graphiking gift shop.
  28. Keep blogging.
  29. Develop readership for this blog.
  30. Do more SEO for this blog.
  31. Get an MA for kindergarten teacher and open one. 
  32. Get an MA in business management.
  33. Learn to play a Darbuka drum.
  34. Learn to juggle.
  35. Learn to do balloon animals.
  36. Learn to work with a graphic tablet.
  37. Create an Artist's Birthday calendar.
  38. Draw dogs and puppies.
  39. Draw many goats for next year. (added 23.01.14)
  40. Learn about and illustrate facial mimics (aka emotions). (added 08.02.14)
  41. Draw as many sheep as possible for 2015,the year of a Green Wood Sheep. (added 12.02.14)
  42. Learn to draw/work with my left hand. (added 13.02.14)
  43. Learn to draw hair and hairdo's. (added 16.02.14)
  44. Get back to Stock Illustration. (added 25.02.14)
  45. Draw various fruits with a lightened with a lamp. (09.03.14)
  46. Draw from live flowers. (added 20.03.14)
  47. Learn to draw with colored pencils. (added 25.03.14)
  48. Learn to draw with Pastel chalks. (added 25.03.14)
  49. Learn to draw with water color. (added 25.03.14)
  50. Draw musical instruments. (added 17.04.14)
  51. Learn to use as less eraser as possible. (added 24.04.14)
Most of the list was created before the end of 2013. Those added later are dated, as you can see.

I printed this post out and put it on my wall so I could see it every day. I really plan to bring some of these to live.

And what about you? Is your plan for this year ready? 

Have a great year and may your plans and dreams become reality. 

January 13, 2014

Drawspace lesson L03: How to create a crosshatch shading map.

Lesson L03 suggests to divide your sketch into areas and map it: highlights, darks, lights and the rest of it (medium).

It was a pretty easy exercise but here's the thing. I used my usual 80 gr printing paper and before I got to the darkest value the paper was almost dead and couldn't absorb any more pencil. So I decided to give it another try on another paper type.

I took some 180 gr white paper, A4, and gave it a try. Here it is.

I'm not sure it came out better than the first one, but it sure felt better when I worked on it. The fact that the paper was softer and thicker than the printing paper and not glossy and smooth made the graphite absorb way better. On the other hand it also made the drawing got way dirtier.

I don't know. It felt good. I'll have to think about it.

January 10, 2014

Drawspace lesson L02: How to crosshatch with graduations?

In other words: how to create a graduated cross-hatched shading?

This is the exercise from lesson L02.
All the slots were made with several layers. It was pretty difficult for some reason, but it might be because of the paper. At the moment I'm sing a simple 80 gr printing paper. I read that since it's so thin and smooth it can't absorb so much graphite. So I might start using a thicker paper...

Anyways, this is the second part of the exercise.

Again, 80 gr paper, several layers.
That's it.

January 07, 2014

Drawspace lesson L01:

I begin a new year with a new section and this is Lesson L01.
This lesson is about working with crosshatching. It's a simple one, nothing to think about, but only to do the said.

 These are the sketches and I really had some fun doing it.

This is a nice graduating square shading: bright to dark; dark to bright.

I mostly loved the last part of it, with the waved and netted shading styles. I mean, who really said one should shade with only straight lines?

By the time I completed it I decided to make it my monthly exercise. For that purpose I added it to my new 2014 resolution list. And schedule as a monthly exercise.

January 04, 2014

2013 is over - let us conclude!

It's 4th of January, 2014 and it's time to conclude the year that passed. 
My 2013 Resolution was long and this is the result of my last year's actions. 

  1. Sketch, sketch, sketch. As much as possible!!! - done. Hundreds of sketches were made this year.
  2. Learn to draw Chinese calendar characters - hmmmm, maybe next year.
  3. Finish the flower project this year. At this point I have 24 unpublished posts. I must finish them. It just doesn't feel right to leave it as it is - Well, actually it was 24 pre-scheduled unpublished posts. I have way more but at the moment I'm 12 posts less than I had last year. So I'm good, right? 
  4. Work on portraits and human figure sketches. - Drawspace
  5. Be ready with a holiday illustration(s) at least one month in advance - At this point it's only holiday greeting cards for clients, but I'm usually ready 2 weeks in advance.
  6. Do Drawspace lessons weekly - posting every other day.
  7. Become a regular on Illustration Friday - I wish. I will.
  8. Learn to shade properly - working on it via Drawspace)
  9. Learn to draw water properly.
  10. Do Animals drawing - did some, via Drawspace program (cartoons mostly).
  11. Follow all Shoo Rayner Youtube tuts (added 27.02.13).
  12. Learn more about Graphic Design (added 29.05.13) doing on a regular basis
  13. Keep developing my Graphiking gift shop. At the moment it stands on 345 items.
  14. Keep blogging - at least once a week. - At this point the blogging stands on a 1 in 2 days ratio.
  15. Develop readership for this blog - working on it :)
  16. Do more SEO - working on it :)
So, to conclude everything, I've checked 8 out of 16 items. It's not wonderful but these are major and everyday tasks, so I should be proud of checking half of my list out. Some of these things are to become a full time activity in the future. I hope that with practice will bring an experience and a speed, so things will get to be done better and quicker than now. 

I believe that most of this list will make an appearance in my new, 2014 year resolution; some of the items will be added on the way. 

There's one more thing. 
Some time ago I declared that in 2013 I want to illustrated and publish a children's book. This is basically why I intensively started to learn how to draw. I realize now that I lived in a dream world. I see no way how it would happen this year. I am not as skilled as I wish to be for that task. I know I will someday, but just not now. At this point all I should do is practice.

And what about your list? Have you checked it? What are your results? 
P.S. After reading this post I've 
realize that I wasn't really spell checking my posts in the past. Bad thing to do. I know I do now, several times for each post, but I guess I didn't in the past. 

January 01, 2014

Ho ho ho!!! Happy new year!!!

Dear All!!!

It is January 1st, 2014!!!
I hope you made your wishes last night, I definitely made mine!

Wishing you the best year ever!