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  1. #1
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    minimalist cat's sketchbook

    location: USA (GA)
    gender: female
    age: 25


    Background: Self-taught mostly, no formal training. I was a Disney fan before I discovered anime in the late 90's. Since then that's what I've been doing. However, I have unfortunately discovered that I am essentially crippled by the fact that I've adopted this style. I cannot compose or give life to my drawings now because I have a limited idea of what to do. Because of this I became increasingly frustrated and stopped drawing regularly around '07.

    Now, I am trying to go back to basics, learn my ABCs, walk before I run etc.

    I am in an isolated place and I haven't the time or money to devote to finding classes (though I always keep a look out.) So I've had to rely solely on the internet and art books. However I am having a lot of trouble improving. In fact these days it's almost painful to draw after not doing it for so long.

    Fair warning: I am a perfectionist but it is a trait I am trying to shed and I'm willing to do anything in order to improve my skills. But I do need feedback and advice and assistance are welcome, as well as a critique. Be advised I have no freakin' clue as to what I'm doing and I have trouble sometimes interpreting wordy explanations and instructions.

    Yeah uh I really don't know what to do but I was hoping being in contact with other artists would help me somehow.


    ps. sorry about the bad photo...I'll scan some things in the morning...

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  4. #2
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    Hey, your picture definitely doesn't look like you don't know what you're doing. I think you've got some sweet skills and you just gotta post. People here are friendly, so... Keep posting!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sycra View Post
    Hey, your picture definitely doesn't look like you don't know what you're doing. I think you've got some sweet skills and you just gotta post. People here are friendly, so... Keep posting!!!
    Thanks.

    I have to say your comment means a lot to me. I was having a craptastic day (art problems being partly to blame) but it was nice of you to bother to read my post and comment on my drawing.

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    You have a really nice trace, very confident. Please, post more!

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    Okay...so my scanner won't work. I will post digital and pre-scanned stuff if that's alright. I only draw mostly on paper because I haven't adjusted to the fluid feel of tablet pens *control freak*

    This is a dump of different gestures, done in 09 on a site called iscribble. No references used. This is when I first started learning about and doing gestures.

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    Here's a scanned drawing.
    Madonna and Child (Raphael)
    Took 2 hours roughly.
    Originally done in orange Col-Erase pencil, but altered in PS to make it more visible.

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  10. #7
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    hey! keep it up! your gesture drawings look really good! i agree with the person above, in my experience everyone's been really friendly and encouraging as well! draw lots, post lots and you'll definitely improve and getting feedback for it is always helpful for keeping you going (: the internet is a great resource, i feel like a lot of people on this site are teaching themselves so you aren't alone in that (: i will stop by to see what else you post!

    "the world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper." - w.b. yeats

    sketchbook. comments/advice appreciated (:
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    2009 Painter practice (I usually find PS to be easier, but less painterly.)
    Ref. Images from Google
    I realize there are some mistakes (most notably that severe highlight on the apple to the right.) I was pretty proud of it at the time though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by neonndreams View Post
    hey! keep it up! your gesture drawings look really good! i agree with the person above, in my experience everyone's been really friendly and encouraging as well! draw lots, post lots and you'll definitely improve and getting feedback for it is always helpful for keeping you going (: the internet is a great resource, i feel like a lot of people on this site are teaching themselves so you aren't alone in that (: i will stop by to see what else you post!
    Thanks a lot. I do feel a little more comfortable in posting now. (Whatever I post will probably have to be digital or a photo since the scanner won't work.) But maybe that will get me comfortable with digital drawing/painting. And yes I am basically on my own at this point. But it's been that way all along so maybe it won't be so bad.

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    Just a quick sketch from last year based on one of the many AA ads you see on the net. I often have a tendency to draw on lined paper. For some reason it usually looks better or feel better...I guess because the lines help keep me from wandering all over.

    Done with red col-erase and then traced over in pencil to darken (sorry about the sucky quality.)

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    Your sketches look really good. You need a lot more contrast in that painting. Personally I think its good to pull colors right out of the photo when doing a study. Photos have a lot of noise but you can get around it by setting the eye dropper to 3x3 pixel sample mode.

    I love the gesture drawings. They look so active! I'll be checking in again for sure.

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  15. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoKhi View Post
    Your sketches look really good. You need a lot more contrast in that painting. Personally I think its good to pull colors right out of the photo when doing a study. Photos have a lot of noise but you can get around it by setting the eye dropper to 3x3 pixel sample mode.

    I love the gesture drawings. They look so active! I'll be checking in again for sure.
    You're very right. At that time I'd just learned about reflected light so that was what I focused on. Currently I am trying my best to grasp the subject of value, which isn't so easy. It's rather confusing. Yes the painting...it's not very cohesive looking when compared with the ref. photo. I usually do pull colors from the photos, not sure why I didn't with this. Thanks for that tip about the eye dropper.

    Thanks. I was pretty surprised when I was able to do those gestures, especially without reference (but I didn't time myself.) Guess I had some good energy going.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MoKhi View Post
    Your sketches look really good. You need a lot more contrast in that painting. Personally I think its good to pull colors right out of the photo when doing a study. Photos have a lot of noise but you can get around it by setting the eye dropper to 3x3 pixel sample mode.

    I love the gesture drawings. They look so active! I'll be checking in again for sure.
    Right. I haven't grasped the concept of value yet so I realize it's not that cohesive with the photos.

    Thanks. Sometimes I have good energy when drawing (or maybe it's just luck because this doesn't happen all the time.)

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  17. #14
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    Here an abandoned picture of Gaga from BR that I was going to use as painting practice. I realize it doesn't really look like her but I was going for the overall look. The focus was on making it as realistic as I could. I got stumped when it came time to color so I quit. No references was used so this is from memory.

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  19. #15
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    Sorry. My scanner is done in so I will probably have to pose digital stuff more from now on until I get a new one.

    Copied a photo from one of my fashion magazines.
    I had some trouble with getting the nose near enough to the cheek without it overlapping. Eyes are probably too big. Mouth and nose were troublesome s well. Used a ballpoint pen.

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  21. #16
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    For painting exercises, I'm new to it myself but after being around the forums it's pretty much a unsaid rule (actually scratch that, it's said quite often) in that painting from life is better than photo to learn from. Photo's don't give all the information you can get in real life. I say this because I drew an apple myself today ironically and I've drawn them before from a photo and it was a very different experience when ones sitting there in front of you.

    Also disagree with the person above saying use eye dropper to pull the colors out. Personally I think thats a shortcut. Drawing/Painting is about observation, you need to be able to pick the proper colors/values yourself from observation. You better understand it that way.

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    Thanks for the advice.

    Unfortunately when it comes to people, I only really have myself to use as a reference from life. I'm quite isolated and can't get around right now so I wasn't sure how to better teach myself than with photos and magazines. I guess I should try doing self portraits.

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    A super boring lamp on my desk.
    I tried to shade it but I had no idea what I was doing.

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    When it comes to shading, sometimes it helps if I squint my eyes and look at the object in blocks of color instead of clear, sharp form. Just paint splotches at first, refine later! Think of objects, and people, in color blocks instead of trying to see the lines around them.

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    Just finished this.
    Please feel free to critique.

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  26. #21
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    You draw faces wonderfully, the eye studies are looking pretty good too!

    if your struggling with value, i recomend doing some more simple shapes, maybe still lifes (that sorta thing) i would do them in pencil instead of digital for now.

    you will improve alot with consistant studies until nextime, bye!

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  28. #22
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    Striving for realism.
    I'd like it more if I had a firmer grasp on value.
    Please critique.
    EDIT: She's meant to be Asian, I needed practice with Asian features.

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    Last edited by minimalistcat; December 29th, 2011 at 12:08 AM.
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    Loving the eyes!


    As for drawing realism and having a firmer grasp on value, that's where your basic understanding of shapes comes in. Practice spheres, cylinders, and cubes, and then break down the human body into those shapes.

    I like to study from pictures. Just grab any old portrait off the net, bring it into photoshop, and toss a filter over it to make it black and white. And off you go!

    like all things, a better visualisation of value comes with practice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kuddlekins View Post
    Loving the eyes!


    As for drawing realism and having a firmer grasp on value, that's where your basic understanding of shapes comes in. Practice spheres, cylinders, and cubes, and then break down the human body into those shapes.

    I like to study from pictures. Just grab any old portrait off the net, bring it into photoshop, and toss a filter over it to make it black and white. And off you go!

    like all things, a better visualisation of value comes with practice.
    Thanks. I'll keep this in mind. I hate having flat pictures.

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    Personally I feel like I'd be better off doing this kind of thing in pencil. PS makes it almost too easy, but I'm sure I made some mistakes. The shadow probably needs to be flatter on the surface.

    *no reference, to see how much I could remember about the different parts. No white was used. But I will use a reference next time.

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  32. #26
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    You have good drawing skills. /steals

    Keep up, work hard and good luck.

    Sketchbook
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    Creusa- n1frit - DanLiimatta - Fallen - Suz- Hu-ha
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    Just messing around.

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    Lovely SB, keep it coming!

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  35. #29
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    Used a real orange.
    I'm not happy about how soft the brush looks.
    Not sure how to give it some weight.
    It's also not as vibrant. Kind of lost.

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  36. #30
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    Lovely start, great colour studies in particular. Definitely looks like you know what you are doing, now just practice, practice, practice!

    Freelance Artist Website : http://www.allyalbon.com

    Blog : http://allyalbon.wordpress.com/

    Black Cat Chronicles : Soul Thief now published
    http://aileenpettigrew.wordpress.com/
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