Birthdays are for the Living

For the first time since I was 15, I had my birthday off! This is entirely new territory for me; so I decided to draw something meaningful to me.

I drew my homeworld.

I know it sounds pretentious, but it’s not incorrect, is it? Plus drawing Terra is not as easy as it seems. So many colours, so many layers, set against an almost velvety smooth blackness. It’s a really gorgeous place.

And I get to live there.

You do too. Isn’t that amazing?

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He’ll Heal Heel

I promised you red, didn’t I? Well after trying four separate times to get started, I finally gave in. I’m just more in people mode. Maybe later.

Skin tones. They tend to be the single greatest pain in my ass! I limit myself a lot on colour choices, because I believe that I can create most of what I need, which is true. Still, it requires a bit of experimentation sometimes.

When it works, like here, it can give the feeling that the warmth and shadows are coming from within the image itself. That’s definitely the goal.

Sometimes I run into an unusual problem that’s kinda normal. People are NOT perfectly symmetrical. Who knew?

This is a study I did of a good friend. She is very chatty and always seemed to have a totally normal facial symmetry… until I looked closer…

I had never noticed that before. I erased her eye a few times before I went with it.

Here you can’t see it as well. Most people are this way; arms too long, short torso, nose curves slightly to one hemisphere. And once you start seeing it, you can’t stop!

Relax.

Although we draw from anatomy and physiology, understand that nature has its own quirks. Try to find a way to make that work for your image. It’s no secret that breast are rarely the same size on a woman. You can choose to give her “plastic surgery” or draw her in a way that highlights her beautiful essence without changing it.

The young lady in this picture loved her picture. She has a disorder, but she likes that her image makes her feel beautiful and special but doesn’t leave it out.

Always remember, “If every pork chop was perfect, we wouldn’t have hotdogs”

We Greg’s are good for stuff like that. 😊

Consumer

Red is getting to be a popular color for me. My whole life I always hated it, but now it’s everywhere around me.

Ha.

I know a lot of people start off drawing the shapes and then finesse that into images. For more complex images I do so as well, but I’ve drawing since I was about three years old. So certain things I tend to do from long held instincts.

The tape is something I started a few years ago. Believe it or not, I used to just use a ruler and paint to the edges! This is sooo much simpler.

I don’t really have a particular pattern to how I get started. Lately the subject is where I start but it could be anywhere. Maybe I should think about it more diligently? Meh.

Never start with your darkest color! I used to do that when I started learning to mix them and it was a horrible period for me. It gave me nowhere to go, artwise.

There’s no worry of bleed over; it’s a LOT of red, lol. As usual, I try to work from light to dark.

Thank goodness for gel pens! Adding details to the earrings help give you the sensation of having them in front of the hair. A brush pen for the black gives the hair some depth.

I gave the blindfold/scarf a darker red to start to create separation from everything else. When all of your colours are so similar a little light tan can have a big impact.

And that’s it! This image took me about two hours, give or take. I’m about due to create an inanimate object. What’s red that I can draw?…

Red

If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you know that I often draw people that I see on my ride into work on the commuter train. The responses I get vary, but it usually works out for everyone. Usually.

The above picture is one that almost got me in trouble. A lady called the conductor and accused me of drawing her. I wasn’t. Worse, she didn’t ask me, she just assumed. I was drawing my friend, Rebekah. Ugh.

On to happier thoughts. I did this one for a Facebook group. Everyday they post a new photo for members to draw. You have until the next post to finish it. I check in when I’m bored or need to draw, but can’t come up with anything. So there’s the pencil work. Not bad…

Then I started to color in the easiest and obvious parts. I find that if I do this it brings all the other layers forward.

Throwing in that much poppy red was a little daunting. It was either going to make the image or make it a mess! I knew some of it would leach into the subject; but if you’re in a room THAT red, that would happen from saturation.

Skin tone is being determined by values. I had to be careful not to over shade or add too much detail on one side of her. She’s supposed to seem a little washed out.

The buckles on her boots were made easier by leaving a accent line in the black of the boot. Then a slightly darker red was added to give a sense of balance. After all, if there’s a bright light on her, why would her background be flat?

Someday prismacolor is going to make a subdued red and I won’t have to blend to get this look! *sigh* It was so bright in the image so I had to go there. I removed the tape(I’ve gotten much better at it) and there you have it.

Keep in mind, while they give you 24 hours to get this done, I try to work it in about 2, tops. It’s really fun and if you draw, give it a shot!

Evidence

My life is still out of whack right now, but drawing as therapy isn’t working. I kinda shifted where I emotionally gather the energy to draw from. Doing so, means that I have brown outs, of sorts, and can’t just put on sad or dark music to get back in the flow. My playlists are useless!!

So when I was asked to do a caricature for someone I reluctantly agreed. I’ve never been very good at those; that weird cartoony look is definitely not the Marvel style of drawing comics. But I decided to give it a shot.

It came out really well and she immediately made it her profile and put it on her Instagram, Facebook… ALL of her accounts. She was actually happy to pay and now a bunch of her friends want one. I feel a little bit better.

I think I’ll play my 2017 playlist.