Friday, March 13, 2009

Portrait of Raven and Minnie

Raven O'Keefe
8" x 10"
Graphite on Strathmore 100lb Bristol Vellum

This was part of a portrait exchange from one of the art groups I belong to. Raven did a portrait of me. This was a lot of fun to do. You can see a quick slide show of the work in progress, below.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Pencil Drawings - A look into the art of David J. Vanderpool

I picked up David's book some time back, but only finally had time to sit down and read it from cover to cover.

The book is well written and has lots and lots of photos of his work (my favourite kind of book!). There are many step by step photos of several of David's pieces with insightful text explaining how he got the effects.
Messy looking hair is much harder to draw than hair that is combed. Light must be able to bounce through that careful styled ‘mess’, as well as the shadows that help some of it stand out. Take your time by tackling one section at a time. Much like muscles in a hand or chest, hair needs to be drawn in sections too.
It is a great way to get into the head of the artist, while picking up tips for your own work. His style is a little different than mine, but I love his realism and his technical skill. I have tried a few of his techniques in the latest piece I am working on (will be able to post it soon) and I find that it works well for me.

Here is what is said about the book on the site:
Pencil drawings - a rare and often over-looked art form in today's art scene. This collection of masterfully crafted graphite pencil drawings shows the step-by-step process it took to complete over 26 dynamic drawings in less than a year. With over 350 illustrations, see the portraits develop and read the artist's thoughts and views on how he crafts each incredible work. This "journal style" book gives the reader unique insight into the creative mind of the artist and takes the reader on a journey from blank page to masterpiece.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for tips and techniques, or likes to get inside the head of an artist. I give it 4½ stars out of 5.

If you are offended by human body, this is not the book for you. There are a few images that portray full male and female nudity.

To see more of David Vanderpool's work, please go to

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Portrait of Ana By Raven O'Keefe

Ana Tirolese
By Raven O'Keefe
8" x 10"
Graphite on Paper

My friend, Raven O'Keefe, did this lovely portrait of me as part of a portrait swap in one of the art groups she and I belong to. I am thrilled with the portrait. My guys have already been figuring out where to hang the portrait once we get it framed.

Raven O'Keefe is a very talented artist. Please view her sites by clicking on the links below.