Thursday, 16 September 2010



Having been brave enough to share my drawing of a mountain with you I thought I would have another attempt at a sketch of something else. So I thought I would have another try at drawing a person.

Here it is, Jackie. Now I have tried and finished portraits of people before using pastels. I have even tried a self portrait. These I have always done from a number of photographs. I have never just sat and drawn.

I hope you notice I am not calling it a drawing but a sketch. I need somebody to tell me how, using pencils I make this into a fully fledged drawing of this person. How to I get those lovely textures so many of you are able to do?

Ruby in her blog said you either have it or you do not. I don’t think I have but I might try to find it.

I mention her because today she is off to the hospital for tests, but more importantly she is one of those who I was talking about in my other blog who always seems to see the positive and good in all things. I know some of you like me follow her blogs.

Jackie the old lad in the portrait is another of that ilk. He only ever sees the very best in everything and everybody.

I know he would laugh out loud if he heard me saying, “I hope I am like him when I am old.”

I am not sure I have managed to capture that wry smile of his; I might even have made him looked surly.

OK Katherine just for you. This is a sketch, done by a pencil.

Keep looking on the good side. This is the way of the Tao.

This blog is linked to my other. It All Depends Where You Are


  1. Your timid, don't want to hurt anybody soul, is showing up in your pencil. Don't be afraid to punch the darks. Squinting will help you discern the values. Check places like his neck, corners of his eyes and mouth. Those missing darks will make him really pop with dimension. Good luck and have fun!

  2. I guess it all depends on not only 'where you are' but your interpretation.
    Sorry, about to preach here. In my blog I didn't mean to imply you 'either had it or didn't have it' as an artist.
    I meant there are certain inherent instincts in an artist which are not necessarily present in those without an artistic bent.
    Artists see beyond the visual; they feel beyond the concrete in front of them.
    Don't know if this clarifies what I was trying to say. I was tryint to describe my artistic journey. Sorry if I misled you or others.
    By the way love this sketch....texture can be obtained so many different ways and I can only offer a few I know of.
    Rubbing against an object, which I am certain you know, like against the bark of a tree.
    Different pencils - some artists use 2H or 4H leads for lighter areas; I just use lighter pressure on the stroke. Many artists rely on paper stumps for shading. Then there are graphite sticks...these are lovely...beware some of them can leave a glossy surface
    There's 5B or 6B for darker areas. Then there's covering an area entirely and using eraser to create lights.
    What am I saying - I don't know; will discover what works best for you. Have fun with pencils...give them the same sensitivity you give your acrylics and you will derive great satisfaction from the exploration.
    Oh, and by the way....try conte sticks or pen and ink ... lovely also for sketching.

  3. Ralph, you just need to refine it... by refining I mean adding in those important darks. Under the top eye lids there should be a touch of dark going across almost like a shadow from the lid..
    Definetly don't stop now! I won't go into a long writing on this here.

  4. Thank you Susan and thank you Barbra. at last my blog is working. last time I posted this everybody said it was good now at last I am getting real help to make it better. I so love all you bloggers but you are even better when with me you tell me it as it is.

  5. Well, I think it's fabulous!! So there.
    Grab you a book on working with pencil. You will find your answers there.
    Charcoal is fun too.