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  1. #1
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    Noktpapilio's sketchbook

    Hello, I first came across this website when I was sixteen. I had an interest in art, but thought I wanted to be a programmer. I soon found out that not only did I dislike it, I was no good at it. I spent the next few years trying to complete general ed, jumping from job to job, and generally trying to make my way in the world. As I got older, I started to lurk around here quite a bit more and get into art as a hobby. I thought that maybe I'd like to go to school for it. The only thing accessible to me at the time was community college, and I squandered even that. I thought at the time that doing figure studies and still lifes were boring and I didn't see how they connected to making space marines, alien races and monsters. I was stupid, and the only thing I can say for myself is that I didn't waste anyone's money but my own. Now I'm 23, I have a useless associates in digital media (It being useless is my own fault). I really haven't gotten anywhere with life, I don't know what I want or where I'm going, but I think i'd like to get to a more professional level with my artwork, and I feel finally coming here and starting a sketchbook is the first step.

    I'm going to try my best to update this sketchbook daily, and I would love any criticisms you can offer. =]

    I wanted to put some pictures up today of stuff I've drawn to kind of show where I'm at, my my uploads keep failing, so I will try again tomorrow. =]

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    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 24th, 2013 at 09:37 PM.
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  3. #2
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    Hey Noktpapilio, your story really strikes a chord with me because I was in a very similar situation and I really feel for you. I started getting serious about art a year ago although I'm not sure what "serious" is supposed to mean. I've just been self studying and feeling around in the dark hoping that I'm pointing myself in the right direction. I wouldn't call myself a pro or anything close to it but I do know some things. I'll be coming back to give you my thoughts on your work cause from what I read up there ^ I just want to see you grow leaps and bounds with your art.

    Don't let me down!

    Last edited by KyTran; October 2nd, 2013 at 04:20 AM.
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    These are some pictures that I've done for classes in the past. I didn't get a chance to sort through the ones I've been doing recently because I got busy at work today, but I will do that tomorrow as I have the day off =]

    KyTran, It's great to know I'm not the only one who feels like they're stumbling around. Thank you so much for posting on my sketchbook. I will be sure to get some of my more recent drawings up tomorrow =] I'll be looking forward to see what you think. Good luck to both us!


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    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 29th, 2013 at 11:33 AM.
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  5. #4
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    Here are some pictures of where I'm at right now. These are my favorites, and I didn't want this post to become an image dump so I made an imgur link for all the rest in case anyone is interested.

    http://imgur.com/a/teBeD#0

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    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 29th, 2013 at 12:01 PM.
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    Alright well here is some stuff from today. The picture of the snake woman I actually started yesterday, but finished today. I'd been drawing quite a bit of faces, so I wanted to see what I absorbed by drawing one from imagination. I don't think it came out super great, but I did have a lot of fun with it =] The picture of a bust I started today using a Charles Bargue drawing as reference; I'm going to try and work on it tomorrow.

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    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 29th, 2013 at 12:04 PM.
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  7. #6
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    Nice to see you working hard. Early on it's HARD to see and emulate what light does to the edges of objects and I think this is why less experience artists default to using outlines as a way to hold the form. If you are doing line drawings varying line weights are a way to give drawings form and in theory it's simple. "thicker, darker line for hard edges in shadow and lighter, thinner lines for soft edges in light"

    yeah but what it comes down to is understanding of light on forms and that's something that comes with time and study. Just keep edges in mind when you study and everywhere you look as you go about your day. There are no outlines in real life so what is really going on? and when you draw how can you represent that?

    One thing that Took me a VERY long time to really understand is that the darkest shadows (core shadows) are where the objects surface are tangent to the light source. If you think about what this really means and why this is the case, your understanding of light will grow SO FAST. This is a helpful image
    http://www.artinstructionblog.com/wp...2009_img_9.jpg
    When I was where you are I didn't take the principles in that image ^ seriously but I wish I did because it would have saved me a lot of time in my art studies.

    Another thing that I wish I did more early on is use reference when I did personal work. I don't mean find a face in the exact angle you need and use it to draw a face and then add your own stuff to it. I mean just find reference of your subject mater and look at it while you do your personal work. You will learn a lot without realizing it and your work will look better. This was/is the most useful learning technique for me. There is no shame in it and in no way does it make you a less good artist. And to people who say you're better if you don't need reference, forget them, because they have no idea what they are talking about.

    Again, in no way do I consider myself a expert. I was in the situation you're in and I still am so I just wanted to share the road blocks that I encountered in hopes that it might help you through your road blocks. Keep at it!

    Last edited by KyTran; October 5th, 2013 at 02:30 PM.
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    I didn't get a chance to do much work today, but I did work on the bust. Thanks for the link, KyTran. I know I've seen it before, but as you can see it's gone out the window, lol. In the drawing of the bust I really tried to implement this, but I think it needs more work. Looking at the diagram, I don't have all those different shadows on it. I will post the progress I made so far anyways though =]

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    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 29th, 2013 at 12:06 PM.
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    I tried to apply the picture you gave me to this drawing, KyTran. =] Still not sure I got it quite right, but that's what practice is for, right? I do notice a huge difference from the last picture I took of it though. I also did a study of the sphere from memory to try and get it down. The other pictures were me attempting to draw people at mcdonalds, and my attempt at one of the fancy chairs when there was a lull in patrons. I don't think they came out great; it was really difficult trying to get down a persons gesture before they moved again. The last one is a study of a leg I started.

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    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 29th, 2013 at 12:10 PM.
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    I got frustrated with the leg I was drawing so I completely started it over. Twice =p I think I finally have to proportions down and I'm working on the shading. The second drawing I was trying to shade a cone from memory before I looked it up. The third drawing I was doing on my lunch, trying to catch a guy in the act of enjoying his burger. I had to stop because he totally caught on and didn't seem happy with me. heehee =]

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    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 29th, 2013 at 12:13 PM.
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    I'm actually really glad you did the sphere because now I know what info you are missing. The sphere I linked you actually doesn't label one important. The Terminator!
    The terminator is where the shadow family meets the light family. Basically where the very beginning of the core shadow. Something important to remember is that no part of the shadow family can ever be as bright as any part of the light family and no part of the light family can ever be as dark as any part of the shadow family. In the sphere you drew some of your "reflected light" region (which is part of the shadow family) is just as bright as some of your light family. I see it in your other sketches here and there also. For now when you go to shade I would, very clearly identify where the shadow and light family is and draw a light line to separate the two then begin shading and keep the rule I mentioned above in mind.

    when you do studies from photos you should post the photo too!

    my opinion: For your sketchbook, when you upload images I would re-size them to around 700 pixels(height). It's easier to view, loads fast, and you can't properly view an image if it's in your face. My eyes are about 3 feet from my computer screen and I don't really like to look at images much taller than 700 pixels. When i'm painting i'll go bigger sometimes but every few minutes I zoom out until the image is about 3 inches tall on my screen, otherwise i can't properly asses my image.

    Last edited by KyTran; October 8th, 2013 at 01:23 PM.
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    Ah, I see. Ok, I will try that out tomorrow =] I'm sorry about the pictures being too big; I do see what you mean though. I've been linking the pictures from my imgur account, so I'm not sure how to resize them. I'll ask my boyfriend tomorrow and I'll hold off on posting the ones I drew today until tomorrow. Thanks for coming back and giving me some more advice, KyTran =]

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    You can re-size and then upload images straight onto CA without having to go through another site. Not sure but it might also work if you re-sized the image before you uploaded to imgur.

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  14. #13
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    Kytran: I'm not sure why but everytime I try to attach the images directly to conceptart it doesn't work, but I found out how to resize them; I felt really dumb because it was right there under where you upload them. Let me know how if I should still make them smaller =]

    I didn't get much work done because I wasn't feeling too great and I slept most of the day. But I'm better now and I'm going to right back on tomorrow =]

    I finally finished that leg though I still don't feel it looks quite right.

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    these are just some random doodles I did
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    I really felt that leg needed work, so I started doing some studies of them from one my Andrew Loomis books. The first image is the original copy
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    and this is what I've got so far:
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    Since I had so much trouble with that leg, I thought I'd do some leg studies from the Andrew Loomis book =]

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    I saw in another person's sketchbook that they are trying to work their way to 10,000 hours. I think that's a great idea! I think I'd like to keep track of that also, starting today. I'm going to give a conservative guess on how much time I've spent so far and say about 8 hours. I'm hoping to put more time aside for drawing and try to hit 40 hours a week. Anyways, today I started drawing a picture of my cat, Thane. =]

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  17. #16
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    nice, pay attention to your overall values. A common mistake is to only pay attention to local values. For example, you know what parts of the leg is darker than other parts of the leg but you need to make value comparisons between the leg and the rest of the entire image too. If you don't unify the overall value your image will look flat. It's also good practice to draw some of the background in sketches like this so you can put your subject in a space. I found it helped me learn a level of perspective that goes beyond basic vanishing points. Keep at it!

    ps: if you'd like me to elaborate on the thing about values, just ask ^^

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    Alright, thanks, KyTran. Do you think the values in the cat look ok? I understand what you're talking about, but if you have any more information, I'd love to hear it. I appreciate your help.

    Here's an update on the picture of Thane:
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    And here are studies I've been doing the past couple of days

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    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 29th, 2013 at 12:42 PM.
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  19. #18
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    I'm not sure why some of them uploaded so huge =/ Sorry guys. I'll try to fix it tomorrow.

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    Color and value can be very deceiving, I would suggest opening your drawing in photoshop or gimp and using the color picker to sample the image colors in different areas. Then do the same with the picture and compare. It helps you get an objective look at how dark the color really is, you'll be surprised. As someone in the earlier learning stages you need an objective way to look at color and value otherwise it will take a lot longer to click. I understand that with pencil it's hard to get a full 1-10 value range because you can only get about 1-7 with graphite but consider that the eye of the cat is by far the brightest part of it, thus your drawing should reflect that. There other parts where the values is off too. Don't focus on the texture and making it look like a cat just focus on the value and shape first.

    Your prospective off. The cat and couch don't look like they are sitting in the same space because the plane that the cat is sitting on does not match up with the plane of the couch. I made this quick image to show you what i mean. #1 shows a cylinder sitting on the same plane that your sat is sitting on. #2 shows what a cylinder would look like if it was sitting on that couch. In #2 the prospective shows that the eye/camera is higher up, looking down.

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  21. #20
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    Thank you so much for showing me that, KyTran. Putting it in photoshop made me realize how I'd messed up the values. I fixed it a little bit, but after taking a picture of it, I can see where else it needs to be darker. Here it is so far
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    These are some bone studies/ value studies. I think I have a problem getting values correctly, so I'm going to practice getting them right on basic shapes. My cat kind of destroyed the cylinder, but that's ok because I'm sure I'll be making a ton more =]
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  22. #21
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    Hello, I love your sketchbook! You're practicing so much and I get motivated when I look at these. You vary a lot and it looks so much fun.
    You have a grasp of shapes and values. I like your real life studies and also your anatomy studies. I think you should just keep going!

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    Thanks, Carro! That's so nice! I've dropped by your sketchbook as well; I love your figure drawings, and how you implement what you've learned in your cartoons =]

    This is going to be kind of a sketch dump since I haven't gotten around to posting my drawings from the past couple of days. I managed to hit 30 hours last week, which isn't too bad, but I'm going to try and push it to 40. I'd also like to try and draw a little bit faster, since I've noticed it takes me forever to determine when a drawing is "finished".

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  24. #23
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    And here are some hand studies. I want to get good at drawing people! Can you tell? =]

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  25. #24
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    Here are some more sketches I have done over the past few days

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    I wanted to try doing a digital picture, and maybe I shouldn't have jumped into color first thing, but I'm having fun with it. =]

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  27. #26
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    I can see you improving! For your drawings of glasses, mugs, bowls pay special attention to ellipses because they say everything about the prospective. I'm seeing conflicting planes again like in the cat drawing. Also I can tell you aren't drawing with the pivot of your elbow or shoulder but mostly with your wrist. Along with your sketches I would fill pages upon pages of straight lines and ellipsis. Lots of them. It sounds dumb but you need to get that hand/arm control. They are always good to do and I still do them to warm up sometimes.

    Even though you haven't been at it for long I know you can sketch out a good ellipse. The ellipses on your mug(setting aside the issue of prospective) are crooked and distorted. Sketches should be "messy" because they are done loosely or because you are exploring an idea and are not ready to commit to permanent lines. They should not be messy because the artist is sloppy although it happens to the best of us at times.

    as for the digital painting you are focusing too much on the detail. Think of it this way, paint the painting in the order of it's most important attributes to least important. The texture on one little section is not very important while the shape, base color, and overall value pattern is more important. So paint those first before you start texturing anything at all. As you study art you'll hear this concept perpetuated countless times and it's easier said than done in early studies so don't get frustrated. Keep at it!

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  28. #27
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    A total of 61 hours

    Wow, I didn't realize it'd been a few days since I posted. I've been working though =] This past week I got 31 hours. Better than last week, but I'm going to keep trying for 40.

    KyTran, I get what you're saying; I often draw in my little sketchbook instead of at the table, so it makes sense that I'm using my wrist a lot. The pictures I'm posting are before I saw your advice, so my next ones I will do at the table and I will draw with my arm and limit the sketching in my little book.

    I don't think making pages of ellipses sounds dumb, it sounds like something I need to do because they are so difficult for me! I feel like I really don't get perspective either; I don't think I ever got it down quite right, so I ordered a book on it, and when it comes I'll get some studies in.

    Thanks for your tips about the digital painting. I got further with it, but I will fix it before posting the update. It makes a lot of sense that you should see how the whole picture is coming along before doing the details. I tend to zoom in a lot, and I think I get too focused on the section I can see. That is a habit I will have to break.

    First up are some really messy drawing I've been doing to warm up. I haven't posted them because I didn't think I needed to, but KyTran telling me to work on ellipses made me think that maybe if I showed what I was doing as warm ups I might get some more suggestions.

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  29. #28
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    Next are my studies of heads I've been doing. I've been crazy about faces because I want to participate in the international portrait day, but I've been kind of worried that I won't do a good job. So hopefully drawing a ton of faces will help =]

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  30. #29
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    Nice to see you getting some work done. The ellipses you're doing are too small to effectively develop your control. I would say do some that are at least 2 to 6 inches in length at varying roundness. stay loose when you are warming up but don't get sloppy just because you can be. I have a really small sketchbook I draw in when I'm just sitting and waiting for things, table or not, small or big I am still drawing with both the pivot of my elbow and shoulder so it's just a matter of getting comfortable with it.

    rather than trying to churn out a lot of hours or drawings focus on doing fewer high quality drawings. really take your time, you will learn a lot more from each drawing that way. Also I bet you have some understanding of vanishing points but you are not applying it to your cubes and other simple shapes. Map out some vanishing points and draw some nice cube and then compare them to the ones you have done. all your cubes seem to have the same error.

    If you have time could you re-size some of your bigger uploads. It's taking me quite a while to load your page. Thanks

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  31. #30
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    Yesterday was really terrible. I feel like I couldn't get anything decent done, and it really frustrated me. I started few drawings, but didn't get really far with any of them. I think the only good thing I can say about yesterday was that I tried. I hope today will be better.

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    here are more heads from my sketchbook

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    these are a couple samples from the pages of ellipses I made

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    And here is an update on the basket

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    Hey KyTran, thanks for all your advice. I'm trying to use my elbow and shoulder instead of my wrist. Drawing bigger kind of forces me too, but I noticed that in small places I lapse, like on the wacom. So I will have to keep watching myself.

    That makes a lot of sense. I feel like I almost exclusively do small, short studies. I think the only couple of things I made into projects are the picture of the cat and the basket, and even those aren't completed pictures. Also thanks for your suggestion on the perspective advice.

    I'm really sorry; I've been meaning to come back and make them smaller. I will try and do that today.

    Last edited by NoKtPapilio; October 29th, 2013 at 11:34 AM.
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