So this challenge took a little longer than I anticipated, but I did finish (I’m going to slowly upload the results over the next few days) and I’m so glad I gave this challenge a go. Not only is it so nice to look back through the sketchbook and see so many pages filled over a relatively short space of time, but it was really fun to play with different media knowing it didn’t matter if it didn’t work out as I intended. On top of that it was so good to be able to sketch animals I wouldn’t necessarily be able to fit into my other work, and into the bargain it gave me a better understanding of animal anatomy too!
So first up, here’s days 8-14, featuring dogs, hares, hedgehogs, monkeys, hummingbirds, lizards and badgers!
If you’d like to see the drawings from this challenge, and the most recent stuff from my sketchbook, you can check out my instagram page here: Rowena James Illustration
Well, I’m still going! Although I’m having far more fun doing it than I’m sure I should be (The first 3 days I managed each set of drawings in about an hour, the last few days…well, let’s just say they took a little longer…) I’m really enjoying experimenting with different media and I’ve found myself thinking a lot more about which medium to pare up with each animal (so far I’ve found fluffy animals much easier in pencil, and animals with more form/interesting shapes more suited to pen or ink), but then maybe mixing up some unexpected animal/media combinations could be my next challenge!
Okay, well so far so good! This is actually proving a lot easier to sit down and do than I thought it might be (which I guess is a good thing). It’s actually been really nice to just draw for fun/without any specific purpose. So here you are: squirrels, polar bears and deer!
So over the past 3 months or so I’ve been trying to get back into the habit of sketching every day (which technically I have been doing, as part of my continuing effort to turn my illustrations into something I could actually call a ‘job’), but it turns out going away sends my brain into a ‘yes-I-can-draw-for-fun-for-no-particular-reason’ kind of overdrive. (Which is how I ended up filling up a whole sketchbook over the course of a 2 week holiday in france in the summer- a level of drawing productivity I’ve never quite achieved before.)
So it was that when I went into the art shop just before we came away this week I bought myself a new travel sketchbook (more in hope than expectation) but 2 days in and it already seems to be working. Well, it could be the sketchbook, (an A6 thing of beauty with open flat pages, a super soft black velour cover, elastic to keep it closed, little pockets and a place for a pen…ok, ok, I admit, I have a thing for new sketchbooks, but come on, I can’t be the only one, right?!)
Sorry, back to the point- my sudden sketching addiction could be down to wanting to use the sketchbook, or it could have something to do with the super inspiring landscapes, architecture and pretty much everything that makes up the Lake District.
Either way (and this really was the point of the post, honest!) over the course of the next week I’m hoping to make the most of my drawing bug and gather as many sketches as I can (and unlike the last sketchbook, I’ll try to post as much as I can on here).
Finally, having completely missed Inktober last year, and coming to the party a bit late this year I’m going to try and get in as many ink sketches as I can. So, here you go, these are the first 6 scribbly sketches from my first 2 days up here (5 ink and 1 sneaky pencil sketch):
So I posted a working version of this image a couple of weeks ago:
but I was really struggling to figure out how to finish it off. But after working on a couple of other landscapes I started to get a few more ideas, so I came back to this and re-worked it slightly and came up with this:
I’m still not entirely sure if it’s worked- I have a feeling the lighting might be slightly out, but I at least feel like I’ve done all I can with it for the moment and can finally leave it and move onto something else. That said I want to learn as much as I can from it to apply to future works, so if anyone’s got any thoughts I’d be keen to hear them!
Study of Glen Etive, Scotland.
So I thought I’d have a go at a bit of speed painting (something entirely new for me), as mountains are something I’ve really struggled with painting digitally.
I know there’s still a lot I have to improve on (particularly lighting and atmospheric perspective/depth) but I’m surprisingly happy with how the detailing turned out on the left side rocks and I feel like I’ve picked up a lot already (most of it completely unintentionally) so I guess I’ve just gotta keep going!
Boom, finally finished! Well, as close to finished as I reckon it’s going to get…