May 8 - May 14: this week at Valdraws

I only did one very ugly master study this week, which I won't post here, but not because I was being a slacker; I spent a lot of time working on my Butterfly Girl book dummy and I feel good about how much I got done. It's all still quite rough and some pages only have a faint scribble to describe what will be on the page, but I currently have a stack of 28 individual sheets that constitutes almost the entire book, so I have a pretty good idea of what the final dummy will look like.

I also bought a couple of new figure drawing books after struggling more than I should have with drawing my main character; sometimes it feels like I've forgotten everything I ever learned about making art and I need a refresher. My favorite of the new books is Drawing the Head and Figure, by Jack Hamm. It's clear and to-the-point and has a lot of simplified step-by-step instructions for drawing various body parts, facial features, hair, and even clothing. I've only had it three days and it's already been tremendously helpful; I used some of the instructions to help draw this sketch of my book's main character:

I also checked out a couple more wordless picture books from the library, The Red Book and The Only Child, which is longer and almost more of a graphic novel, and listened to most of It's Only Too Late If You Don't Start Now, by Barbara Sher, to help me stay inspired, as well as watching a video on gouache by James Gurney, which I bought on Gumroad.

I also found an artist I had never heard of, James Tissot, who did a lot of gouache over graphite, so I saved a bunch of images for inspiration. I'm not too fond of the religious content in the paintings, but the technique is really nice.

It felt like a pretty productive week, but scanning all my rough dummy sketches would be pretty tedious, so I'll just leave it at that! Until next time!