Monday, March 2, 2020

Inside my sketchbook

Well, I didn't mean to leave it quite this long! Happy 2020! I've actually been working on my artwork a lot this year, I'm about a third of the way in to my sketchbook already just from drawing so much! But it's not really anything 'sellable' in that it's either work done purely for myself, or things to be completed at a later date, but I thought I'd give a peek anyway. It's something I always feel a bit weird about, as on the one hand I want to share work I'm proud of, but on the other social media is such an odd place now in that everything has to be "professional" and "on brand" and it doesn't leave any room to just play. It feels like long gone are the days where I'd just share a picture of something I've made just for the excitement of having created it, and that's a shame. I don't always draw the exact same way all of the time, it'd be boring, and sometimes I like to draw stuff just for me. And that OK! It's actually very healthy.

I've been drawing a lot of portraits in ballpoint pen, and I really feel I've hit my stride with it. I only began drawing with a ballpoint last year, so I'm enjoying seeing my own progress and confidence grow with the medium. Before I was terrified of not being able to erase and making a mistake, but it's not that scary anymore! I've really got to grips (heh) with holding the pen and being able to make different marks with it. It's funny to think that when I drew pencil portraits I'd have about 8 different grades of pencil, now I just use the same 80p Bic for the whole thing. I love drawing these as they're a great way to just switch off my brain, I'll put a movie on in the background and have one eye on that while I work. Plus they're a great way of working on my fundamental drawing skills. They are all Aaron Tveit and Mika because I am unashamed XD

I've also been really into The Prince of Egypt lately. It's long been one of my favourite movies and I've been excited about the stage adaptation since I first heard of it as I firmly believe it's got one of the best soundtracks of any movie, ever. Unfortunately the stage adaptation wasn't great, but it did inspire me to draw the characters from the movie and see how they look in my style. I drew Joseph from Joseph: King of Dreams too, which had the same creative team and I also love. I want to photograph these sketches and play around with them in Procreate at some point, so you might see them again in full colour further down the line. It gave me an interesting challenge of drawing facial hair which I usually avoid, but I think it came out OK? I'm always very conscious of trying to draw different ethnicities too, especially as these movies are so great for portraying people of colour without white washing. It's something I'm always conscious of when I draw Fiyero too as he is canonically not white and I generally focus on nose shape and bone structure, but I'm never sure how well it comes across. It's something I'm very aware of though and working on! I don't want to be one of those artists that just paints characters a different shade of brown and calls it a day.

When sorting through things I found an old sketchbook from about 10 years ago or so, and it's funny seeing how I used to work compared to now, I think old me would be pretty mind blown to see my current sketchbook! It was mostly half finished sketches, and what was finished I was clearly working within my limitations and not pushing myself. I didn't keep the sketchbook as honestly most if it was embarrassing and I don't see the point in holding on to everything I ever drew (do you have any idea how much stuff I'd have to keep for that??) but I did tear out a few pages of things I thought had potential. I've re-sketched them and plan to work on them on my iPad when I have the time. I love that my themes of what I drew haven't changed all that much!

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