Well good morning. Happy Monday, and yes, l am still way behind with everything (except my actual artwork, l am way in front! How did that happen?!). I am really excited to be sharing this piece with you, simply because it was such a challenge for me. Anyone who has been reading my ramblings for a while will know that l am new to this coloured pencil drawing thing and l am totally self taught. I hate using that expression for myself because it sounds like l have been teaching myself in some sort of methodical and progressive way. The truth is that l just pick up my pencils and mess about until a thing looks right! And now people are starting to ask me questions about color theory and my views on this or that technique! Which is really funny, because l have none! I just draw. If it doesn't look right l keep messing around until it does. And this piece required a lot of experimentation for me. All new textures, all new patterns and shapes.
To be honest after the first day l began to wonder if l could actually do this thing. I am not a precise person and my brain doesn't order patterns in that neat way that some people have. And l was working scale by tiny scale. I knew l had to do this for his head as l would never be happy to put a base colour down and try working the scales over. I wanted all the colors in the right places, and there were so many colors this would never have worked for me.
When l began it was the scales and patterns on the head that l foresaw as my biggest challenge, but in actual fact l had the hardest time with the body. Try as l would the scales would just not come out pointing the right way. I kept looking and l could see they were just a simple shape, but when l came to draw the simple shape it refused to look anything like the simple shape l saw on the photo. You would laugh if you could see how many times l got it wrong! Eventually l came up with a method that worked for me. Firstly, l laid down a few base colors and some light shading, then l actually drew faint lines in the directions that l could see the scales going, both horizontal and vertical, so l created a sort of grid, (l need to do a tips page on this to explain it properly) but then l could work the individual scales to shape around each 'square' of the grid. Some more shading, colors and highlights and the end result was much better than l expected it to be considering the crazy way l went about it.
Now l am sure there are easier ways to do the same thing if l had some proper art training, but you know what, l really don't mind. I like the challenge of working it out for myself, l don't like theory, l don't like someone saying that you should do something one way or another or use or not use certain colours. I do love colour, l love just trying things out and seeing what happens. And sometimes l think we are made to feel as artists that things have to be complicated, that we have to know certain things, and the sheer fun of drawing and coloring gets lost along the way. Just get stuck in and draw and have fun and you will make progress with or without special training. Anyone can do it, and that is really what l have wanted to get across ever since l began writing this blog. Just draw.
Prints and all kinds of goodies with this design are available now in my shop.
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