I want to draw - I have to draw!

This little blog should – in a perfect world - function as a peek into my personal little trip down the road of drawing. I can guarantee there will be plenty of road rage, steep learning curves, crying and thumb sucking involved.
If you scroll down you will see some of my begging steps (hahahaha I'll let that stand - Freudic slip - but I mean *beginning*). Since I never really did any drawing prior, I don’t have any old drawings lying around to share either - unfortunately.
My starting level was nothing, stickmen and general straight line challenged, with an newly added circle handicap – good fucking game.
But I’m determined I will learn this, whatever the cost.
- Tue

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Finished with the two first schedules in Kimon Nikolaides - The Natural Way to Draw


Not really sure what to think so far, I seem to swing from ”A-ha” to ”uhm… this can’t be right”, so it’s very confusing at times to say the least.
It’s very weird not to be “drawing” in the normal sense, but instead scribble things down furiously and then slow tortured with the blind contour.
I do have some fun moments though, like when I’m trying to mimic/feel the gesture and impulse, for example someone doing a stretching out pose and suddenly I find myself drawing in a heavy *sigh* preparing for incoming muscle pains, or when the pose switches into something more battle orientated and out of the fucking blue there's a small growl and clenched fist… goddamn you feel stupid as fuck, but at the same time that sense of immersion is prolly part of the shizzle – I can’t really say it changes much in the sense of the outcome, it gets a lot more engaging sure, but also 99% of the pose gets lost in the process. That’s the thing I can’t seem to find the right balance between chaos and figure, either it’s a drawing of a “spaghetti bowl” or it’s at least in the ballpark of looking human.
What I wouldn’t give for some actual face-to-face  tutoring - it’s the sense of being caught in the rush-hour traffic , well knowing that somewhere there’s a road where you can fucking floor it.

Anywho thought I would at least upload some of those 60 second gesture “scribbles”. These ones doesn’t show the whole spectrum obviously, I’ve gone through my 500 arks of A4 paper and a 4B pencil now (using both sides of the paper ofc.) and the style varies… a whole fucking lot - to put it mildly.

1 minute gesture sketch

1 minute gesture sketch

1 minute gesture sketch

1 minute gesture sketch

1 minute gesture sketch

1 minute gesture sketch
*edit - I can't be 100 % sure, but I think the above pose is the same as the one I posted some days ago, back when I started this -> old sketch
1 minute gesture sketch

1 minute gesture sketch

It’s been a week and some days now and I haven’t drawn anything other than 60 second gestures and marathon contours in this time, so when I was watching an episode of Californication and got the urge to try and capture the gesture or feel, I kinda had to run with it.
I can’t say for sure how much time I spend on each, I put “Katie Melua – If you were a sailboat/It’s all in my head” on repeat and I would guestimate each scribble was about a song or maybe two in length – fairly short and done with the style as my gesture drawings with a little more focus on shapes, but not getting overboard, just trying to zone in and let the pencil do the drawing (Hank Moody’s story in essence is just fucking sublime in my humble opinion!).
The outcome is kinda weird for me, without the connection to the gesture it’s just not the same (for me that connection is out of the window the second I move on), but it’s liberating nonetheless to actually draw something in a short and furious action. Go back just two weeks and I wouldn’t have been able to let go like this, it would have been all analytical, measuring proportions, checking perspective and then “maybe” do a very trembling careful line or two here and there, the thought of starting a line without being fully aware of where it might end, would have been utter alien tbh… so that’s new at least :P

Hank Moody

Hank Moody

Hank Moody

Monday, March 26, 2012

Studying Kimon Nikolaides - The Natural way to draw

Still very much here and still working hard!

I’m busy with “The natural way to draw – by Kimon Nikolaides”, it’s a goddamn extreme program or schedule to start on. Each block of exercise is 3 hours and the last hour is drawing a single blind contour sketch – HOLY FUCKING SHIT ON WHEELS!!! That’s the biggest test of mental strength and focus I’ve ever fucking done EVER, half-way through I want to stab out my eyes with a very fucking dull wooden spoon… and so far I’ve done 6 of those 1 hour sessions - they don’t get any fucking easier… just more agonizing, blind contour = torture, waterboarding got nothing on blind contour if you ask me.
But fuck it, I rather have a red thread to follow than just sitting and waiting for some epiphany, though I do feel Kimon Nikolaides took me on my word when I said I would draw 10.000 circles if that’s what it will take for me to draw a decent circle (not sure if I ever said that… if I didn’t then I meant to and that makes it legit tbh!), I’m not sure how many A4’s I’ve gone through so far, but I’m almost done with my 500 stack :( and that’s with drawing on both fucking sides!!!

Kimon Nikolaides exercises

Here’s the stack so far, I can’t even imagine how big it will be when I’m done… Anyway, the exercises aren’t really meant to be shared and they would make very little sense I think, just take the cross contour, those exercises are literally just lines on a sheet of paper, I don’t follow some outline, instead it’s just from A to B and “oh lets go up now… hey why not go right and hmm up looks fun, oh top of the head now… np lets jump back to the waist and go down the leg a bit…” the outcome is unintelligible even by myself.
I love the gesture exercises though, the fact that it’s supposed to be done “furiously” without stop and never lifting the pen off the paper and not bothering with outlines ofc, is really refreshing.

It's proved a bit hard for me to multitask, meaning I don't get around to draw anything other than these exercises atm, I hope I'll be able to scribble a drawing here and there, but when my motivation and focus are this concentrated I know from experince I need to run with it. :)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Slow and steady wins the race!

I’m a bit slow with the updates atm and I apologize for that, but I found a book called “The Natural Way To Draw – by Kimon Nicolaides”, it really suits me and it’s pretty much what I have been looking for.
It’s very organized with schedules and exercises, there’s no swaying feel good “just do what you want, it’s all just for fun and game tihi – bullshit”, it’s very point A to point B, which I’ve been missing in authors like Vilppu and Loomis, imho they take your hand and follow you on the road and don’t really bother with start or finish. Kimon tells you where you’re expected to start and where finish is and then gives you some basic tools, which you need to learn while on the road… and I love that, gimme a fucking compass and I’ll get there! I don’t want some fucking hiking buddy holding my hand… telling me every fucking swing and bump there’s on the road – PISS OFF!
Long story short, there’s not really much point in uploading those drawings, since it will make absolute no sense - heck most of them don’t even make sense to me the day after. I will share a quick one just as an example to what it is I’m working on :P
 On a side note – Contour drawing can seriously go fuck a duck!!!

I did two “normal” drawings as well ofc.
First is a gun from a friend’s book of different firearms, don’t ask…
Nothing big, but still fun to work with that many straight lines, though it’s a fucking hell to piece together, specially without a ruler, you’re pretty much forced to sketch out the whole thing and then start adding “basic” things and make them all fit together as a unit… ugh I miss circles and curves lol :P

Next is another tablet drawing. I wanted to start something from scratch and not from an old pencil sketch, just curious if I could do it really.
Pretty fun experience, though I’m a fucking bull in a china shop when it comes to understanding Photoshop… *sigh*

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Painting with 0's and 1's! using a Bamboo Pen and Touch to draw in Photoshop

Playing around with the tablet I’ve borrowed!

It’s extremely difficult for me to get used to that thing, but I’ve given up trying to do “pencil” drawings with it, that’s just too alien, but I can at least try to “paint”.
I loaded up some of my old quick sketches and tried out this painting business.  
After a lot of bitching and whining I got advised to check out Ctrlpaint.com for some basic tutorials and yeah… that worked, it’s fun how you can go from a feeling of absolute despair and frustrating to “this is kinda fun”, but yeah at least now I could have some fun and not worry about bloody line sketching with it.

I’ll prolly try and do some lines with it again (no nooo - not those sorta lines... grow up!), maybe it’s just some matter of building up a familiarity with the new tool, dunno.

Anyway, my first project was some bananas. I didn’t really know how to approach it, but even if it felt stupid I had the feeling of learning on some basic level at least.
One thing I discovered though – colors are great and painting is super fun! :P

Next I just wanted to keep going in the same track, so picked up a sketch of some citruses or oranges, not sure which term is correct lol, it's supposed to be citruses but my color “palette” decided it was oranges for me! :P

Friday, March 16, 2012

STOP! Hammer time! some drapery drawings and a quick revolver sketch

Some quick updates - I’ve borrowed a tablet (bamboo pen and touch) soooo… I’ve been preoccupied with that devils tool. I feel old when I’m trying to figure that shit out, without going HULK!
It's not easy, AT ALL! It’s like drawing in blind, but not only that but also drawing in a “wrong” scale… it’s great if you’re looking for a mindfuck.

Anywho, some drawings… A few quick sketches and some drapery studies, holy mofo that drapery is something else, as you can see the first one I did with the “business as usual” mentally, but meh… lines… couldn’t get it to work at least, so tried some value approach which worked better, but it feels weird.
Then there’s a quick sketch of a hammer and a pistol. The hammer I did because it allowed me to use some perspective in practice, which is always nice. The pistol was just to do something else for once, again I thought it would be pretty simple, but noooo… I didn’t want it to turn into anything major time consuming, so went for a more basic thing, but for nothing else I discovered how complicated “mechanical” objects can be and how you pretty much needs to be correct the first time, because trying to correct things in the middle can offset the whole fucking thing, like there’s some lines which just need to be somewhat correct or it’s gg. Anyway it was fun at least and next time I prolly need to invest a bit more time and be more  careful with getting the lines straight… -.- let’s just say; I won’t fire that gun…

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

More quick sketches and a squirrel… (the logic boat sailed a long time ago)

The squirrel started out as just a quick sketch. I was staring at it for ages trying to find a starting point, but as something new I started out with a square to fit the little dude in, which prolly isn’t the worst idea, just to avoid that annoying moment where you discover you drawn the entire thing way too big to fit the paper… yes that happens… more often than it should -.- Anyway after that I finally saw the starting shape which is the circle the tail and head/hands makes, after that it was just business as usual.

 When I was “finished” I kinda wanted to spend some more time on it though, not sure why, but it was interesting on some level. I just continued to loosely sketch some extra details down, nothing major, but at some point I got the bright idea that the background should be ALL black and using a pencil for that would be too much…  so why not a little charcoal, what’s the worst thing that could happen…?

… Yeah… some quick lines and… OMFG!! Why did I do this?! CTRL+Z CTRL+ZZZZ - OH FFS!
Sigh - it looked fucking stupid, the coal didn’t match the pencil sketch at all and the whole thing was just… no… no no no.
It took me ages trying to balance and correct what I could. I don’t really like how the fur looks, but I don’t know a way to make it work or “simplify” it though.

The rest are the standard weird quick sketches of random things from my stock folder ^^
The shark was kinda fun though, I started out with the body and it looked stupid, it made no sense at all, so added the back fin and… side fins? Which only made it look like a freakish Mola fish, but after I draw the tail fin in it was *puff* a shark – it’s so fucking funky how our brain works, one simple little detail and “oh yeah, now I see what the retard is trying to make…” - oh yes, that’s an actual inner dialogue… or it could be at least :P

I prolly should do a lips/mouth study soon... "tomorrow..."

Monday, March 12, 2012

Quick sketches of random stuff like insects and fruit

I don’t really have the slightest idea what I’m doing here, but I can always quick sketch something at least, nothing big just random stuff from reference.

Don’t have much else to say really, there are some obvious mistakes like the citruses, which I fucked up the value with… the… inner… stuff? Is supposed to be white, but yeah I was on auto pilot as usual.

To some extent I do the see the meaning with these quick sketches, even if I don’t think they do anything, I’m still storing some basic blueprints… I hope :P

I had to auto adjust the contrast/brightness with these sketches, so the lines look a bit darker than they really are, guess the "magic" pink strip lost it's power... fåcking bullshit tbh!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Eye of the... Lion and the usual nonsense - Drawing a Lion and some more eye studies.

So now what cowboy?

I don’t know why, but I’m stressing myself thinking I have to draw for quantity instead of quality. It’s some stupid idea about how much you can learn from one drawing… so if I’m investing say 3 hours I can get a lot more value out of my time by doing a shitton of sketches rather than try to finish something – smart ideas… GOD I HATE ‘EM!

More eyes, some of them are from imagination as well, that kinda surprised me, but hey – GJ subconscious! The pairs kinda fucked me over; I really need to make more use of help lines, like an eye line for example. Now I’m drawing and finishing one and then moving on to the other, and that really is stupid of me, there’s no reason for me to be doing that -.-

But I really wanted to try a bigger drawing for once, I remembered how I wanted to draw the Cheetah or I actually think it’s a Leopard - correct me if I’m wrong please – anyway, when I was drawing those eyes I had a wish I could continue the drawing in that scale and get the whole thing… but yeah, only got A4 here and no tablet ofc (come on lottery ticket!).
After I spend like 1 hour digging up pictures of big cats… procrastinating much?? YES SIR!! I finally kicked myself into gear and started on a lion – yeah there prolly is a story to be found here, but I feel like we should know each other a bit more first.
Anywho, halfway through I felt my sense of limitations with a pencil, It annoys me greatly I don’t know a proper technique to really get a dark tone/value out of my pencils, so yeah I managed to kill my own motivation… gg gj! I did manage to get a bit more work done despite though, but prolly Ricky Gervais is to thank for that, was listening to his stand-up show meanwhile - spit and tears from laughing flying around the desk.


I doubt it’s a drawing I will be going back to... or well, maybe trying some charcoal could be fun.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

I spy with my little eye(s)... a study in drawing eyes

Even if I lack some general direction, I can still draw something… right?

Yeah fuck it, I heard you should always be drawing something, if for nothing else just to store some "mental" pictures, after all I can always pray my brain can work shit out from there… “come on subconscious, I don’t really know what you do… but I could really use a hand here and I feel like we can work something out together… you and me man, we’re gonna go places! *raises fist in warning* OR ELSE!”

Some random eyes, the first 8 kinda took some time and there’s a cat, eagle and cheetah eye in there as well – yeah, I got a bit bored and wanted to try something else.
 - If your wondering about the pink stick on the pictures, it's helping my scanner... I got no idea why, maybe it's some contrast thing, but if I add that little stick it seems to help... sorry if pink offends anyone, next time I'll go with a more masculine... orange?

I felt like I spend too much time on those first ones, so the rest of the eyes are quick sketches, fuck the smudging, rendering and all that time consuming shizzle.
It took me two tries before I found the style I was looking for, so after that I just zooned out and got to work. I can’t say really how long it took me per eye, my mind had kinda left the building at this point… but it was a fairly fast process with just a normal mechanical pencil (which wasn’t smart – that shit is way to “pointy” but /shrug)