Gymnastics Lovers

I like to see the different search terms people use to get to my blog. I’ve seen “drawing evolution” a bunch of times, like it was a school assignment or something, and “how to draw Shailene Woodley”. The most common I see multiple times a week is “gymnastics drawings” or “how to draw gymnasts”, something along those lines. Bottom line, people love the gymnast drawings.

It had been a while since I had actually drawn a gymnast so I thought I’d give the people what they want and do a new one. (I’ll try scanning this drawing later, the photo didn’t turn out so well.)


This one is of McKayla Maroney. I drew her a while ago here in 2012. I did this drawing the same way I’ve been doing the Bargue drawings. No more grid method here, the string for measuring gave much better results. I also did all the dark tones first before moving on to mid and lighter tones.

2H-2B pencil was used and it’s 11×14 size.

So, thank you to all those gymnastics lovers out there for stopping in and checking out my stuff. I hope you like it.

Keep Drawing!

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Another Bargue Study

I thought I’d share the 2nd Bargue drawing I finished a couple of days ago. Of course I had to do a head bust drawing. It was took much more time to complete but just as satisfying.


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Classical Drawing

OK people, this may be another step in my drawing evolution. About a year ago, I heard about “classical drawing”. This is drawing from plaster casts and studying the form and mastering light and shadow. Something like that. European awesomeness. Something that would normally require a class, which I can not do at this point.

While digging around the interwebs yesterday, I discovered that before using actual casts, and eventual life drawing, there’s a course called “Bargue Drawing”. Charles Bargue, a 19th century French artist, created, basically, a huge catalog of drawings from old human casts. These drawings are used to train your eye to draw what you see. Apparently artists like Vincent van Gogh and Picasso used this method for learning to draw.

I can do this one from home! You put the reference picture drawing right next to your paper and you measure all the major points to have an exact size copy before doing all the shading.



I used 2H, HB, and 2B pencils. I used an embroidery thread as my measuring device (it’s what I had handy). It took about 2 1/2 to 3 hours to do.


Photo Dec 11, 8 26 08 AM

It was so much fun, I’m going to do another one today.

Keep drawing!

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Tom Hanks with Video!

I have a big, gooey, mushy, soft spot for Tom Hanks. He’s my all time favorite actor. I’ve loved him since Splash and BIG. Forrest Gump is my favorite movie of all time. Tom Hanks just knows how to put a smile on everyone’s face. He’s pretty much the only human being in Hollywood I really really want to meet.

In honor of Mr. Hanks becoming a Kennedy Center Honoree, I decided to draw his portrait and I did a speed drawing too!

Funny thing I’ve discovered after doing two videos. I draw much faster on camera. This drawing took 2 1/2 hours! Most drawings always take me about 8 hours. However, this particular drawing is much lighter in detail than I normally do.

I hope you like enjoy it!


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Kate Winslet

I may be on a weird “back to my old habits” kick. My latest two drawings, this one of Kate Winslet and another I’ll show later with my next speed drawing video, have ended up being a little lighter in tone and detail. I don’t know why, maybe these two particular drawings just felt “finished” at these points, I don’t know. But I’m still happy.


By Monday I’ll have my next speed drawing video up and running. Woo hoo!

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My First Speed Drawing Video Is Here!!!

I’ve finally done it. My husband helped me out on Saturday and I sat down and finally completed my first time lapse drawing.


It was fun and I completed it faster than expected.  I’ll not talk about it too much. Just watch and enjoy.


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Steps To Doctor Who (and Other New Things)

I’ve taken pictures of another step by step process of a drawing. This time I choose the Eleventh Doctor of Doctor Who. I remember seeing the episode from season 7, “Nightmare in Silver”, in which the Doctor essentially ends up with a split personality for a bit, and I thought the screen shot with this alloy metal on his face was visually interesting. I found the exact picture I needed online and have finally drawn it. I’m pleased with it.

I began with a light outline in HB pencil.IMG_1474
Then made the lines darker.
Filled in the face with a 2B pencil. I do this to create the mid-tones because I’ve had a weakness of making my portraits too light. This sets me up for more contrasting tones.

Then I add some darker areas in the shadows and eyes. I also erase some general areas where the light hits the face.IMG_1471
Now I begin smoothing everything out more, mainly with a tissue. Then add the main detail lines in the metal piece.
I use a HB mechanical pencil and begin on the metal.
Metal completed. Well, first draft.
I now use a 4B pencil to work on the face some more and darken up shadows. I try making his skin look smoother which is difficult. It’s about this stage that I always think, “I need to try smooth paper, instead of vellum.” Maybe next time. I also started on the hair. I use a 4B pencil and start on the darkest part of the hair and start adding basic shapes.
Hair is still tough for me, but I think I’m getting better. I added the basic dark and highlights.
After a few more details on hair, I take a break and add the clothing. Pretty simple. I use a 2B to start and lay down everything. The corduroy collar wasn’t too hard. I filled it in with a solid 4B with appropriate shadow/highlight, then took the mechanical eraser and erased the lines. Then did my best with a sharp 4B to make then look like sharper ridges. If that makes sense.
I use a 6B to fill the bow tie and I try to leave the jacket soft but with a little bit of texture. I come back to that a little more later.
After a little more hair detail, and when I’m feeling almost done, I show it to my husband. I do this because he’s honest with me about errors he sees. After spending 10 hours on a drawing, fresh eyes are needed. So with his feedback a added some darker shadows around the jaw line, ear, and darkened the jacket shoulder while lightening up the shirt collar.
IMG_1462I realized with this portrait, that the lighting in the source photo is a little flat, which make for kind of a flat drawing. This makes me have to bump up the shadows and details more so it can really stand out. I wanted this drawing to be dynamic and wanted the image to make an impact on you as the show first did to me. Who knows if I actually achieved that.

Finished product.

In other news, I decided to revisit my high school art class days and a made a lithograph block print. I used Daniel Craig from James Bond. Why not? This is experimental and I’m just trying to do something new and different for me.


I got interviewed again. This time by Shannon Orr from the blog “Mastering The Art of Being Me” for a weekly series of interviews she’s doing with creatives around the country. She’s super creative, talented, generally awesome and also my sister-in-law so click here to see the interview!

As always, Keep Drawing!

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