Friday, September 27, 2013

The Sketchbook Challenge Blog Hop… and a giveaway!

Welcome to today’s stop on The Sketchbook Challenge Blog Hop! This is the ink sketch I made for this month’s theme — Houses and Hideaways — based on this photo of my house:

Perspective is always an issue for me, since I never learned it formally. One thing I do sometimes is to put a piece of tracing paper over the photo and sketch in the main lines. Then it is easy to see how the lines get closer together as the object (the house, in this case) recedes from where I was standing to shoot the photo.


Next, I work in pencil to sketch in the main lines:

I often get comments about my cross hatching. Maybe it’s because I am rather obsessive about it! Let me show you what I mean. Here’s a photo I took of some beautiful berries last fall in Michigan (I don’t know what this plant is; do you?):

And here is the sketch based on that photo:

 The cross hatching adds wonderful detail and texture to the background:

Here’s a photo of a beautiful red coneflower:

And my sketch:


I used cross hatching here to create the effect of many layers of leaves back behind the main flower:

The cross hatching between the petals helps to make them pop forward:


Here’s a photo I took on Election Day several years ago:

And here’s the sketch based on it:

I used lots and lots of cross hatching to differentiate the different shades of blue and red in the flag, and the black of the tree trunk. Cross hatching was especially useful to show the wrinkles in the fabric of the flag:

Here’s a photo I took of a big grasshopper on some Swiss Chard:

 And the sketch based on the photo:

I used cross hatching to make the background darker, more dramatic, so that the grasshopper and the leaves took center stage. It is also useful for doing shadows, like this one under the grasshopper’s body, to create depth.

This Lenten Rose photo…

was the inspiration for this sketch

Here, the crosshatching behind the stamens helps them really stand out, and become a focal point in the sketch:


And around the petals, it makes the background darker, so that the petals appear to come forward:

I’m giving away a custom-designed sketchbook cover, and a Moleskine sketchbook that fits inside – similar to mine above. Leave a comment after this post and tell me a little bit about your favorite house or hideaway. I’ll pull one name at random at noon, Friday, Oct. 4, and contact you to find out your favorite colors, so I can design a sketchbook cover just for you! The winner will be announced at the end of this post on Oct. 4.  

Note: If your comment does not show up right away, please don’t freak out. Please post only one comment. I now have to moderate/approve all comments, because I was getting a ton of Japanese porn spammers leaving comments on my blog! I’m a busy person, so it might now show up for a while, but I’ll approve it as soon as I can. I promise. (I am teaching all day Friday, Sept. 27!)

We have a winner! Loretta has won the sketchbook.