Monday, 24 April 2017


During this semester, I chose to do some of my own personal drawings for some practice. There are still some area of drawing that I am struggling with so this will help me a lot. Some of my results are better than others. I feel that my timed drawings are improving much more due to me not worrying so much about getting all the detail in but rather the base outline of the models. Facial features are what I struggle with the most and although I try and use Peyton's style to draw them here, I can't seem to adapt to it. I may need to try and find my own style of drawing them, rather than relying on someone else's. With colour however, I really like working with and I have really improved on it. I just wanted to see how I could use it here and to also see what blended colours go best with each other.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017


During this semester, I have had mixed responses for my work. This time, it wasn’t just the model we were focusing on but more so the atmosphere/environment around her. We were introduced to some new ones; some being better for me than others. Personally, I feel that I work the best with wet media such as paint due my improved ability to blend colours to create shadows and light on the body and on the surroundings. However, with dry media such as charcoal, I occasionally have difficulties. The reason for this is because, when I apply charcoal to my drawings, it sometimes gets ruined as I can smudge it in a little too much. I have however have had some good moments with charcoal where the shadows have turned out very well where the image seem very three dimensional and realistic. I feel that I can improve using charcoal by being more controlled with it rather than letting it be messy, which can be a achieved through practice and experience.

When it came to artists, I wanted to look at their work and to see if I could learn from them and apply their techniques to my own work. I think that I spend too much time focusing on one specific part of the model’s body and then I don’t have enough time to finish the rest. Therefore, Elizabeth Peyton’s work in drawing celebrity portraits stood out to me. She doesn’t draw with excessive detail but rather executes her drawings quickly. Peyton uses lively and expressive markings while using a limited colour palette and not overworking the drawing. In comparison to my attempt at a self-portrait of Courtney Act, the line work is all wrong and is too tight and sharp. I needed to be looser with the pencil instead of trying to replicate the photo that I used. Aside from the hair which did turn out very well due to the shape and colour, the whole face looks slightly deformed whereas Peyton’s does look natural. The main problem in my drawing are the eyes as they don’t look realistic due to the size, the lack of detail and the fact that I spent too much time on them whereas Peyton only used a few lines for her eyes with a better end result. However, in order to improve this for future work, I’ve been practicing drawing the faces of celebrities as well as facial details.

My tonal work has its pros and cons this semester when concerning it with the backgrounds I have be adding into drawings. I tend to shade too hard in certain areas which then results in the drawing being ruined. I do get frustrated at this due to the fact that my body proportions have been improving this semester but the tonal work spoils it as it make the image look very flat. The drawing with the model standing up while slightly slouched is an example of my shading gone wrong. Although the proportions are slightly better here, the shading lets it down, especially the facial details. I used the charcoal too thick on that area so it looks more like a cartoon face than a realistic face so my intentions for the image did not turn out the way I wanted.

However, with the artist known as Erik Gist, his tonal drawings are very realistic and shaded very smoothly; almost as if the model is coming right off of the page. His facial expressions are very detailed as opposed to Peyton’s work, and this is what I like about Gist’s work. I would rather spend a lot of time on a drawing than a few seconds as it’s how I like to draw. I have started to include chalk into my work which is a new technique for me. I like the effect is has on my work as I can correct my error as well as creating light on the body. It is also good for the background as shown above; it defines certain areas. Gist doesn’t frequently use chalk on his work but rather uses charcoal to shade around the white on the paper to create the light. I find this technique rather tricky as I can’t always define the light the way I want. It ends up looking messy and the smudging around that area looks rather flat. Won one hand, when it comes to backgrounds, I am improving in that area as well as matching the shadows on the ground to the model and props. On the other hand, comparing it to Gist’s work, the charcoal can again be smudged in a little too much and the shadows aren’t as defined as it would like them to be, much like in Gist’s drawings. This is something I could practice with various objects or even people.

Having said that, I had created some decent looking tonal drawings that have good proportions and charcoal/chalk work. This image here is a perfect example of how my work has improved over the progression of the semester. Due to the fact that the model was at a very difficult angle, I was worried that the proportions would look rather unbalanced. However, the end result was very pleasing as she does come off the page and it is very accurate when concerning shading and proportions. In addition to that, I added the shadows and light in all the right placed; not too much and not too little. I think the only slight let down of this image is the blocks behind her. I think that I marked the outline of them too hard so the shadows and light don’t stand out as much now. Also, I think I could have marked out the toes a bit more as they don’t have much shape to them. In conclusion to this, I hope that my future tonal drawings will be as excellent and accurate as the shaded image above.

There have been no colour exercises this semester as we have mostly been working with charcoal and chalk. When we had chances to draw the model with optional materials, I decided to use water colours as it was one of my targets for improvement from last semester. I feel that I have improved in my blending skills as the colours fuse together very well. Here, I have used light and dark blue for the model’s upper body but there is one error I have made. Rather than actually looking at the model to see the shadows and light on her body, I have just been focusing on blending the paint together. The image was a success proportionally, but the lack of attention to the model, the colours aren’t an accurate representation of the shadows and light. In order to improve, I have looked at water colour artists but the one who stood out to me the most was Agnes Cecile. Her water colour paintings are constructs of paint and lines that create an expressive portrait of a person that she has observed. Her work is very surreal but the shadows and light are clearly evident on the model’s face which is what makes it really stand out off of the page. I also like how the colour work well tighter to create a beautiful effect, which is what I want to achieve in my future work.

 I have mostly used water colours in an optional drawing session that we have as I think it is one of the techniques I need to improve on the most, besides charcoal. I do believe that I have improved on it this semester as opposed to last year as I chose the wrong colours to blend with each other. With my most recent paintings, I have chosen colours like green and blue to go together as they are both cold colours, so theoretically they should combined without any mishaps. With this one being my most successful painting to date due to the colour and size, I was very proud of myself as my improvement is clearly evident. Not only is the blending of lightness into darkness successful but the hair looks very accurate and realistic due to the roughness of the brush strokes. The shadows of the body are all there as well as the outlines of the shoulder joints which aren’t painted in too hard so they look very effective. If I had to be very harsh, I would say that the only problem with this drawing is that I coloured it in whole. If I had used patchwork like strokes on this, then maybe it would have been bolder and more three dimensional. I did do a drawing with patchwork strokes but sadly, it didn’t look as good due to the fact that the body proportions were a little off and it wasn’t as big as the first one the second time round.

To conclude, I believe that my work has significantly improved in the duration of this semester. My technical skills in charcoal have been gradually getting better but I do need to practice and experiment more with it as well as paints. My issue with proportions has not been much of problem this semester as I have been able to edit and correct my mistakes on my drawings. There are still issue with some of my drawings such as proportions and shading but these can all be resolved with practice.  



·       Cecile, A. (2016) Mayhem and Muse, Available online at (DATE ACCESSED – 11/03/17)
·       Gist, E. (2017) Watts Atelier, Available online at (DATE ACCESSED – 11/03/17)
·       Peyton, E. (2017) Artsy, Available online at (DATE ACCESSED - 10/03/17)

Lesson 10 - 03/04/17

This week was peer assessment week so we got into groups and commented on each other's work. I liked looking at everyone's work as it's interesting to see what materials they use as well as size. I was quite happy with my critiques but I was quite shocked at what grade my peers gave me. An a- would be a great grade for this class but I don't know if it was generosity or if my work was good. I do lack the confidence in this module so maybe my work was worth that grade. Either way, I am going to fine tune my work so it is perfect for submission after Easter.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Lesson 9 - 27/03/17

This week, we made a maze book and we had to draw different parts of the Hive, as well as the people inside it. I was drawing parts of the Hive that I thought was interesting as opposed to what I thought wasn't interesting. The reason for this is that drawing something that I found uninteresting, the end result wouldn't be that good. I did a lot of small speed drawings and large scale drawings to have a variety of sizes in the book. I did one large double page spread in the center of the book, which was fairly difficult due to the angle but I was so keen to do this particular part of the Hive. I think that the end result was very good. I do think that I needed to add more wet media next time but it was hard to paint in a library during the lesson since I didn't have the water.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Lesson 8 - Barcelona (20-24)

This week, I was away in Barcelona on an Illustration Trip. As I missed the location drawing this week, rather than going out and drawing buildings and people in Worcester, I have now decided to use the drawings I did in Barcelona as a replacement.

We walked all around to try and find interesting buildings to sketch but the most interesting building was the Gaudi Cathedral due to its beautiful spirals on the outside and the colours on the inside. I looked at the shapes of buildings, the colours and also the graffiti on the sides of the buildings. It was a wonderful sight to see with all the fantastic architecture. I did a variety of drawings; mainly with pen and pencils due to the fact that we had a lot of places to go to so we didn't have much time to sit down and draw. However, I am pleased with some of the drawings I did, although some are better than others.