May 11, 2020
Today’s my quarantine birthday. Yay!
I’ve still been drawing and have started to dabble in painting as well (of which I won’t address in this post). I’ve progressed quite a bit from an ear (last post) to full heads and bodies in some cases.
Lucy at 4 months
This was my first full drawing and I hope to never do a full body again. I took a break during the middle because I thought it was hopeless and nearly trashed it. After a few weeks I surprisingly came back. All told, this took me 40 - 50 hours. Way too long.
Benn and I have a long history and he’s a good friend of mine. This photo was taken when he was spending a couple of weeks with me and Rita, of whom he was not a good friend of. This drawing was going to take a long time because I felt the background couldn’t be dropped like I did with Lucy’s. After trying to do the background with color pencils I knew I couldn’t continue down that path. I ended up trying out a solvent, Gamsol, which essentially liquifies the color pencil on the paper. People use it to blend multiple colors but I used it to paint the damn background because I was tired of drawing. It kind of worked. Not the best result but on the positive side I don’t think it distracts much from Benny. This took around 50 hours.
Not a dog and a terrible photo. I started this during the Lucy hiatus and also used it as a break from Benny’s. I used Gamsol on it as well as again, I just couldn’t do a background. The background ruins it for me but it was still a good effort and I think I got some of the harder details of the glass to look somewhat convincing which was what I mostly cared about.
After Benny I was looking for my next project and I met up (online because of quarantine) with some old friends. I remembered one has a Burmese Mountain dog. So I asked if I could draw her and I’d give him the picture. This was the result. I’m pretty happy with it. The white fur sucks but the rest looks pretty good to me. It also only took 20 hours which was much more appropriate time to take. I’d like to get it down to 12 - 15. Once I hit that point I may think of doing a few for money. The reduction in time came from changing my process and also having a better idea at what I was doing. Previously, I would take a small area and work it start to finish. The downside is I’d obsess with some spots which in the end either didn’t look like part of the rest of the drawing or weren’t as important as I had initial thought in the final drawing. This time, I made full passes in an attempt to bring everything up together and do a final pass at the end of details. 20 hours is a long time but it’s a significant change in moral and also being able to see progress quicker. Another lesson learned is white PastelMat is not the same as dark gray when it comes to tooth. Dark gray takes a lot less layers and still comes out looking great. Down with white. Never again.