I was looking through my sketchbooks and I really like this sketch of my niece and great nephew that I drew on a glorious day near Tenby in SouthWales.
It’s not a photograph. It doesn’t particularly look like them, but it captures a moment and an essence of their personality that anyone who knows them would recognise.
Sketching is about looking and understanding and this comes from doing it. You can practice by sketching from photographs, but that will make you want to copy the image rather than the essence of the scene.
The subjects move about and the sun changes the lighting and the shadows and people have a habit of sitting down in front of you so you can’t see anymore, so you have to snap and image in your mind’s eye and work from that, just checking for detail now and then.
Sketching can be really simple. It’s not meant to be a masterpiece. It’s not a picture to hang on the wall (though it might turn out to be good enough) It’s a note to yourself – a memory of something that caught your eye, something you might use again another time.
It’s a statement of understanding and knowledge. “I saw this – I understood it and I drew it.”
In this video I show how I have created two characters – hero and heroine – of my space-based, middle-grade adventure trilogy – GENERATION MOON – aimed at 8-12 year-olds and up.
Creating a character takes time. They are like new friends – you may think you know them, but it takes a while to really get to know them and understand their individuality and what makes them tick.
If you are going to create a whole book, populated with images of the characters, drawn from different angles and with different emotions, you need to practice, until it becomes second nature how to draw them.
It also helps to create some kind of a grid that you can refer to as the base plan for the character that you can return to when you get in a muddle or when you need to work out how to draw them in a new and tricky situation or angle.
In this video I take you inside my workbook and show how I draw the characters now and the whole series of sketches and thought processes that led up the the present versions.
00:00:00 Start – Drawing Glenn 00:02:37 Drawing Chao-Xing 00:05:17 Look through all the sketches in the workbook 00:14:52 Draw Glenn 00:16:53 Draw Glenn Again