Fun and Games at Life Class

7 pm, Life class:

Teacher: OK, let’s do something fun. You’re only allowed 20 lines, you have 5 minutes.
Stuart: That’s long. 5 minutes … I may have cheated, stopped counting my lines.
Teacher: … and for the last 5 minutes, switch the tool from thin to thick.
Stuart: OK, I’ll switch to wax crayons.

20151103_evening-3Teacher: More fun. Now you’re only allowed 20 horizontal lines.
Stuart: … but I can’t see any
Teacher: Yes, and you may also fill in shadow shapes, if you like.
Stuart: … like this?
Teacher: … now five minutes again, and then an additional 5 to “complete” the drawing as you wish.
Stuart: … ok, those wax crayons are coming in handy.
Teacher: Now you have 15 minutes for a pose. Try out the stuff you’ve just taught yourself

Teacher: One normal pose.
Stuart: Hey, foreshortening is my middle name!
Teacher: Continuously changing pose. Stick to the same drawing, the model changes the pose set-up every few minutes.
Stuart: … like this?

20151103_evening-1Teacher: Good night! Don’t forget to sign the attendance list.

Keep It Small and Simple (KISS)


Just back from figure drawing class. Using A6 sketchbooks and the A5 Moleskine concertina sketchbook.

Also accompanied by:

  • Winsor&Newton Colman watercolour travelers’ set
  • My waterbrushes (Pentel and Koi)
  • The Da Vinci RedSable/BlueSable/Squirrel/Synthetic brush size no. 6
  • Lamy fountain pen with Lamy Royal Ink cartridge
  • Copic Multiliner (black, 0.3)
  • F-C. Albrecht Dürer watercolour pencils

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Moleskin concertina (approx. A5) (everyone loves this, get one for yourself) with Lamy and waterbrush. 2 x 15 minutes.


A6 sketch book, Copic + DaVinci and Colman paints. 15 minutes.


A6 + Lamy and waterbrush. 10 minutes.


Moleskin A6 journal (cahier). Copic + Albecht Dürer pencils and waterbrush. 3 x 5 minutes.

Urban Sketching in Lithuania

Just back from a 10 day holiday in good old Lithuania.

Visiting relatives, taking in the sites and even a short trip to the Baltic seaside.

Here are the few sketches I managed to get done while there.


1: from out of a Lithuanian Kepyklele (a bakery)
2: in a small restaurant in the “Republic of Uzupis”
3: an exhibition case in Medininkai
4: view from our hotel room in Vilnius
5: at the Beer Library (Alaus Biblioteka)
6: from the veranda of our hotel in Palanga

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Preparing for Figure Drawing

So, I go back to figure drawing classes regularly, starting tomorrow night.

I’m going to continue from where I stopped with the ink class, so I’m planning to use paint brush and India ink on whatever I have at hand. To get into the swing of things, I’ve attempted a few sketches on newsprint tonight. All based on photo references.




Last night at ink

Today was the last night at my inking course.

I didn’t really get into the swing of things, but came out with this flowing water study. No references were used here. The teacher gives you a few ideas and let’s you make the mistakes for yourself. I’m especially not very fond of the smokestacks in the background.


First Attempts at Waterscapes

Again, … back from a Tuesday evening class, where our teacher gave us a 45 minute introduction to how he paints a very specific landscape, which we could use as a reference, or just do what we liked.

So, of course, I went for the do-as-you-like option. And here we are.

(This is all on really flimsy, calligraphy paper, my wife is going to kill me if she reads this. Using up all her paper …)

1st pic [CLICK FOR LARGER IMAGES], got some input during the course and adapted it here and there (got some pretty good advice, it’s this stuff you really need to memorize, so you can be objective about your pics during the making):


2nd pic (this was actually, what we may have been expected to be doing, as the paper is too thin, I couldn’t use any washes, or at least I didn’t dare use any):


3rd pic (Then back to the river bank scene with a stone and a butterfly now) (got some good advice here too):


4th (back to the waterscape, just a 2 minute sketch):


5th (trying something out you see all the time):


And the last one, 6th, basically had an idea, but I also needed to use up my ink:


Contrast … and Trees

Just back from my Tuesday inking course. Today, we were to learn how the darkness of a surrounding area, when contrasting with lighter elements, can bring the lighter objects (here trees) towards the viewer.

The first few drawings (chinese paint brush, India ink in differing states of dilution, on extremely thin calligraphy paper) are exemplary for this, but the others were drawn by me in the last 30 minutes, obviously just because I was having fun or I just needed to use up my ink. (The first drawing has a bit of Van Gogh and Bill Watterson.)

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