Many of my students would of seen me use blurry references before. I would usually have three copies of a reference right next to me as a drawing aid.
1. Print one would be of the outline of the reference.
2. Print two would be of the actual reference in colour.
3. Print three would be a coloured blurry image of the reference.
From blurred to detailed
The image on the left is what my drawing looked like after I had done the foundation colours from what I observed from my blurred reference. After that I started adding the details from my original reference and it started becoming more and more to life. It was also easier to add the details because the foundation colours and values directed my eyes to the correct location of where specific details were to be added. This drawing was demonstrated from scratch to finish during a live stream on Patreon. If you would like to become a student on patreon for a $5 monthly subscription click subscribe below. This 2 part real time tutorial stream is available to all patrons as well as all the previous tutorials.
Goonahra circa 1870
The most exciting commission I've gotten so far this year.
So....I was asked by a local whom owns an old beautiful homestead if I would draw it and I said of course. I was semi reluctant because I'd never drawn something like this before but I knew I had to start somewhere.
I went to the property to take some photos and the owner decided on this one.
When I outlined the drawing I measured all the outer edges and freehanded the rest. I pretty much followed the steps from HomePortraits4u and the freehand lines gave it a real sketch feel. It looks vintage and old and worked out better than I thought.
So if there's a thought of the month or even year it is to dive into new things :)
The materials used:
0.2 black fine line pen
0.5 black fine line pen
Heres a timelapse, but for now, happy drawing and enjoy.
You know when you have those times where you think you have an amazing idea for an awesomely overwhelming project but the excitement over-rides everything else?
Well, that happened with this drawing.
Once day I decided I wanted to draw something that was 1 meter by 0.7meters large because I just happened to have an MDF board that size and so the concept of this project was born. I was in way over my head!
I knew I wanted to draw a wild cat and while browsing www.wildlifereferencephotos.com I came across this reference photo of a male lion cuddling a lion cub and immediately felt the love exposed through this drawing and my decision was quickly made.
And so it began...
Using masking tape I taped a large sheet or Arches Watercolour paper from a 50m roll I purchased a while back onto my MDF board. I then traced the outline onto the paper using a projector. Before I blocked in the black background using my airbrush I cut a large sheet of frisket to protect the lion from the ink. I also used some masking fluid to protect the whiskers and some fly away hairs. Once I blocked in the black background and it was dry, I removed the frisket and masking fluid which left a nice clean white paper surface for me to draw on. And so the 10 part tutorial series of this drawing began.
This entire series of drawing tutorials can be found on Patreon for the $5 subscribers.
What materials did I use?
There is a useful link where you can find all the supplies I use in one place and where to purchase them from @kit.com
Arches watercolour paper 300gsm cold press smooth
Airbrush inks (any brand will work fine)
Faber-Castell polychromos pencils
Prismacolor premier pencils
uniPosco 0.7m white paint marker (the must have supply for this tutorial)
Zest-it pencil blend solvent
Sharp Etching/sculpting tool
Fine line black sharpie
Reeves Watercolor paints (for the rocks)
Get a 4min glimpse into a 54hour drawing
Become a Patreon subscriber and get immediate access to all my drawing tutorials.
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Happy drawing <3
EXPERIMENTING WITH WATERCOLORS
Hi lovlies, the first thing I would like to say is HAPPY NEW YEAR!
I'm not sure how your 2016 was but now is the time for new beginnings, it's a new year and let's make it memorable.
We've just moved into a new house in a new state and the start of our year couldn't get any fresher. I got my new studio all set up and I was itching to start a new project.
As you can see, the puppy monsters settled in real quick too :D
The studio in the new house is a fair bit smaller than what we had in our previous house but the storage is much greater so I only have what I need at the time, out on my table and this allows me to utilise my space wisely.
Right, onto the first drawing of the year 2017.
I have no idea why I decided to draw the hedgehog. I went into a folder on my computer and I had previously purchased the stock photo of this cute animal and decided to use it. I was in no mood to search for anything, I just grabbed the first thing and went with it. After outlining the hedgehog onto my drawing paper I was tempted to try something totally new, 'watercolors'. I watched a few 'wet-in-wet' watercolor techniques on YouTube and desperatly wanted to try it.
Guess what? ...it turned out GREAT!!! I loved it so much I decided to make this my 'theme' for all backgrounds in my new drawings for 2017.
Caran d'Ache luminance pencils
Reeves watercolor paint tubes set 36
Zest-it pencil blend
uniPosco 0.7mm paint marker
Tutorials of all my drawings are available on Patreon. This is a platform that allows you access to all my tutorials ever created for only $5 per month. All videos come with step-by-step instructions and occasional downloadable resources. Yes the Hedgehog will be available as a tutorial there too :)
Wishing everyone only happiness and success for 2017,
May I or may i not,
We often find photos or artworks that draw our attention. So what do we have to understand before attempting to recreate them by painting or drawing?
If you are an artist like me who aims to get the most accurate and realistic drawing by using reference photos then here's a few things to consider. If you find a photograph that you want to use as a reference you need to have certain permissions.
If you purchase a stock photo or any royalty free photo you can use the photo and recreate it however you want and then make a profit from the artwork you created. You cannot use the actual reference photo to make any profits but whatever you have created from that photo is yours and you can do with it what you want.
Photographers watermarked photos
If you come across a photo that you really want to use as a reference but it is not royalty-free then you will have to contact the photographer and ask permission to use the photo. Without written permission from the photographer you may not use the photo and reproduce an artwork from it.
No author for the photo
If you cannot find an author for a photograph you are better off not using the photo. You risk being caught by the author later on and can be penalised by copyright laws.
Copying from an artwork belonging to another artist
You cannot copy from another artists' artwork. They will have full copyright over that work and you will be infringing on copyright laws if you copy another artists work. If the artist gives you permission to copy and make profit from their art then you can go ahead but this is very unlikely. If an artist used a royalty free photo to produce their art then you can use that same royalty free photo to reproduce your art, but you can only use that photo not the artists reproduction of the photo.
When is it okay to copy other artists?
It is only okay to copy from another artist if they give you permission to. For example, I encourage other artists to copy some of my art pieces for the sake of learning. I provide weekly drawing tutorials and this is the only time I would give permission for others to copy my work. Even though I have given them permission to copy my work does not mean they can sell it for a profit. The only time it is okay to draw absolutely anything without worrying about permissions is when it is for practice, if you are in no way making any sort of income from it then you may draw whatever you chose without worrying about copyright.
What if I am commissioned to do an artwork?
If you are commissioned to draw from a photograph, does it mean you can do whatever you want with the drawing after the original is sent to the commissioning client? No, you will still need permission from the client if you want to sell prints of your artwork. When a client commissions you to create an artwork for them they are paying you for the artwork and all rights of that artwork. If you want to sell prints of your commissioned art you need to make an agreement with the client to do so. Some artists put disclaimers on their websites stating that they will not take on commissions if they cannot sell prints of their art.
So a simple rule to remember when you are concerned about copyright is 'if you don't have permission, don't draw it' (this is only taking into account photographs and other existing artworks, not still life).
The YouTube video explaining this blog post is below.
Happy drawing everyone.
Welcome to this weeks blog,
Okay I have made this as easy as possible. Below will be a link to a complete 1 hour tutorial video taking you though my pencil layering processes step-by-step. This video is free on my YouTube channel and anyone can watch it.
The first sphere is a demonstration of layering with prismacolor pencils only.
The second sphere is layering with only Faber-Castell polychromos pencils.
The third is layering Polychromos over Prismacolor and finally layering Prismacolor over Polychromos.
I take you through how I get the smoothest possible look using multiple layers and at the end I demonstrate everything by using a blue rose as a practical example.
To blend I use Art Spectrums odourless solvent and a brush or tissue paper.
This is the only full tutorial I have made available for everyone and it should give you a good idea of the kind of tutorials I provide to patrons weekly. If you are interested in learning to draw realistically then consider becoming a supporter on Patreon.
Happy drawing :)
Grid, Trace or Freehand?
There are many ways to get an outline on your paper before you start colouring and I often get asked how I draw my outlines. So I thought I'd take you through three of the most common methods used and then further go on to talk about:
THE GRID METHOD.
The grid method simply put is exactly as the name suggests. A grid with any number of squares placed over a reference photo and also drawn onto the drawing paper. Using the grid as a guide you can draw the outlines in each square and follow them along until you have completed all the outlines in each square. This reduces the overwhelming feeling of not knowing where to start and is a great technique used for beginners who don't quite have the confidence for freehand yet.
The outline of this eye was drawn using a 2 x 6 grid and took 26 minutes. The size of these drawings are smaller than a post card so 26 minutes for an outline is a long time. Many incorrect lines can be seen looking at the comparison of my grid outline on top of the reference photo. The pupil is lower and bigger, many eye lashes aren't quite right, the sides of the eyelid creases are to low and the middle of the eye lid creases are too high. The line for the eye shadow on the right of the eye is also a little higher than it should be and the small end of the eye brow is too high (six obvious differences in the outline).
TRACING YOUR OUTLINE
There are a few ways you can trace your outline. You can use a light box, computer monitor or window .Or in this instance you can take a print of your reference, colour the entire back of the reference in with graphite pencil and then trace the reference onto you drawing paper, which forces the graphite to stay behind. This outline took as little as three and a half minutes to draw and is the most accurate to the reference photo.
DRAWING A FREEHAND OUTLINE
Drawing in freehand means you are drawing an outline by purely looking at the reference. To get a freehand drawing as accurate as possible artists use various items as a way to find measurements. In this outline I used my finger and a small ruler to measure a number of spots on my reference photo. If you take a closer look at the above outline you will see some graphite dots on the eye brow and a few other areas. Those dots are my points of measure that I used to place on my drawing paper and connect them according to what I can see from my reference (supporters on patreon can view the video where I draw each outline and explain the entire process).
Artists who draw freehand from a reference that is not on paper would use their hands, a pencil or any object they think will work, as a guide. For example, if an artist were to sit on a bench with a sketchpad and try and draw the view you would often see them lift their hand or pencil up and try and find a point of perspective or a point of measure. You'll also notice that they will sit in the same position until the outline is complete so that they can keep the right points of perspective in the same view.
This outline was the most time consuming. It took almost a half an hour to draw. The time however showed its worth as there were very little in-correct lines. The eye lashes were mostly drawn too much to the left. The narrow part of the eyebrow is too high and the dotted line to mildly represent the highlighted part of the eye shadow is not quite big enough. Everything else is almost perfectly aligned. I was very pleased with the accuracy of my freehand outline, it did however take a lot longer to draw then I would like.
HOW THE OUTLINE AFFECTED THE FINAL RESULT
The first thing I notice when looking at the drawn eyes are that they all look good. None of them look dis-proportionate or wrong. They each look like an eye and if you didn't have a reference to compare them to then each eye would be equally realistic. The grid outline has influenced the outcome of the drawing the most due to the many differences in the outline compared to the reference. Its easy to immediately notice that it does not look the same as the reference, the eye is narrower and opened wider. I think it is fair to say that the outline greatly affected the outcome of the drawing. The traced outline and the freehand drawing are so close that it would be difficult to determine which one was was traced and which one was drawn freehand. There were more differences from the colouring then there were from the outline. The eye shadow on the freehand drawing is more accurate than the traced one, and the iris of the traced drawing is more accurate than the freehand drawing. This is also a very useful exercise that demonstrates that colouring has just as much of an affect on the outcome as the outline does. You can be a master an outlines but struggle to get the colouring right which will make the drawing look completely different to the reference. This also adds to the misconception that tracing is cheating. Just because you get the outline perfect doesn't mean you'll get the colouring perfect. I personally found that my freehand got better and better the more I traced. Tracing gets your mind in the rhythm of the true lines so by the time you draw a freehand outline your brain is already familiar with it.
WHAT MY FAVOURITE METHOD IS AND WHY.
My favourite outline method is tracing and the main reasons are because it's the fastest and most accurate method of getting an outline. I also do freehand work but only if I am not concerned about the drawing having slight differences. When I am drawing commissions then I know my aim is to get the drawing as accurate as possible so I will trace them. When I am drawing a small drawing of an animal and all I need is for the drawing to look like that type of animal then I will draw the outline freehand because I don't care about the subtle features unique to that specific animal, as long as it look like a giraffe I'm not worried if the eyes end up slightly bigger or if the spots end up a little different. For really large pieces I will always use the tracing method purely because it saves me a lot of time. By comparing my freehand drawing to the traced drawing I am very confident in my ability in using the freehand method but regardless of that I still mostly use tracing for my outlines
I hope that this information has provided you with a little more insight to getting your outlines and regardless of what method you use the outcome will still be great.
The youtube video on this article can be seen below and the 1 and a 1/2 hour tutorial is available for supporting patrons on Patreon.
Happy drawing everyone.
tHERE'S AN EASY WAY...
Okay so you've been wondering how to sign your work and you're asking "How do i find my perfect creative signature?"
There is the hard way. You can sit in front of a piece of paper and hope that your fingers are going to magically produce your ultimate and consistent signature or...look up signature generating websites. Type in your name or initials and start exploring the wonderful fonts. The best one I have found is MyLiveSignature.com, their website has 120 fonts to pick from and the best part is the fonts actually look like different types of handwriting.
There are so many fonts that seem so relevant to so many different styles of art. You just have to find the one that fits you best. You can download and print it for free and then finally start practicing.
Yes, its as simple as that.
Let me know if you've found your signature in this way. I did.
Have a beautiful day.
I know what you're thinking....
How is this year already over?
This is by far the fastest year of my life but wow, what an amazing journey it was.
Here are a few highlights:
- February, I became a registered business.
- April, I entered into my first art competition with the 2015 Wanneroo Art Awards.
- July, I was booked for commissions for the remainder of 2015.
- September, had an interview published in Americas Colored Pencil Magazine (the Autumn Student Edition).
- October, started creating in-depth tutorials for my supporting patrons via Patreon.com/sheldenefineart.
5000 Facebook Followers
500 Instagram Followers
500 Subscribers on YouTube
1008 drawing hours (Woah!)
250 video editing hours
1 1 of my own choosing
4 Patron of the month drawings
4 Subscriber of the month drawings
Total of 57 drawings!!!! (Very Proud :)
Here is a quick look at a timeline.
I am so excited to see what 2016 brings and its going to be great sharing it with all of you.
Enjoy whats left of 2015 and HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Hello to all you beautiful people,
Todays blog entry is all about changing our train of thought from an injured one to a positive one.
WHEN YOU RECEIVE A NEGATIVE COMMENT:
This has happened to most of us and will probably happen again. You'll receive a negative comment and immediately you cant help but feel 'heart-broken'. You try anything to just shake that feeling but still the comment gets to you. So this is what you do...
STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS ON CHANGING YOUR TRAIN OF THOUGHT:
What you'll need:
- A few pieces of scrap paper.
- Plenty of small pieces of pretty and colourful paper.
- A translucent container (a big one)
- A waste bin
STEP 1. Use the scrap pieces of paper for any negative comments (you'll probably only need one piece). Write the comment down and fold it or crinkle it up.
STEP 2. Use your pretty and colourful paper and write down all the positive comments your have received for your work (there might be too many so just do enough to fill up your bowl).
STEP 3. Read your negative comment. Now scrunch it up and throw it into your waste bin.
STEP 4. Take out a few of your positive comments and read them out loud.
STEP 5. Put that bowl with your art stuff and grab one whenever you need to.
YOUR TRAIN OF THOUGHT HAS CHANGED:
By merely comparing the sheer size of your positive comments compared to the negative comment/s you should already feel uplifted. That negative comment is insignificant in comparison so why let it put so much weight on your shoulders. Disposing of that negative comment is the perfect solution because thats all it deserves. It doesn't need another second of your emotions, so get rid of it.
The bowl of positivity that you have at arms length is a true reflection of your work and its value. That should be treasured and used whenever you need a little motivation to get you back into the creative mood.
Remember, instead of focusing on whats negative, appreciate whats proven to be positive in your life.
To watch the YouTube video on this topic click here. Q&A - How to deal with negative comments STEP BY STEP
Have a beautiful day everyone.