What's up? Yep, I'm back... as I do twice a week. This time, I will be talking about an old friend of mine, a dear companion from the early days, the sidekick in that continuous adventure of mine called artwork. I will be talking about: my pencil (that's right!).
Ok, I know that doesn't sound very exciting. But, what you don't know is that my pencil is magic, it is not like any other pencil. Ok, ok, I'm over doing, my pencil is not magic and is exactly like any other pencil that you would buy at any store. But, reality is that I am not talking about a pencil in particular (believe me I've had my good share of them throughout the years). Rather, I am talking about graphite tools being an essential part of my artwork, be it regular wooden pencils, mechanical pencils, lead holders, etc. That is what I call "my pencil", a tool that has always been there for me.
Pencil drawings were indeed my first love. And you know how stories about first love go, they always have a special place. I'm not joking when I say this. I remember back in my college days, while taking a speech class, I ended up talking about my mechanical pencil as the topic of one of my assignments (trust me, I wasn't a very good student, but that's another story). Up to this day, I enjoy using my mechanical pencil to do sketches that will become full paintings; or using my wooden pencil for finished drawings. Due to my current assignments and commissions, I don't get to do finished drawings as often as I would like, but the love will always be there.
Just yesterday, for #tbt I posted an old drawing of mine, from six years ago, featuring amazing model Veronika Kotlajic, a fellow artist friend that I admire and respect. That drawing is very special to me, in big part (among other things) because is the biggest one I've done (30 inches high, compared to my usual, 10 or 12 inches high). Not the biggest painting, but the biggest drawing, pencil drawing indeed. See, drawing is a very relaxing process, at least to me personally. I get to "lose myself inside myself" because of this. So, working on a piece much larger than my regular size, gave me the opportunity to immerse myself in that relaxation for a much longer time. It was truly a trip... fortunately, getting "pencil high" is completely legal.
There isn't much of a mystery of why I love drawing with graphite pencils: the control level, the possibilities of working with so much detail, the melancholic sense that can be evoked, the elegant look that comes with it, and so much more. I've tried working with color pencils in the past, and even though I liked them, I completely love drawing with graphite. By the way: nothing wrong with color pencils, we just have to find the tool that makes us feel comfortable the most. That is how I ended up working mainly with graphite pencils, airbrushes and digital tablets.
What you read about are completely my personal preferences and experiences. However, an advice that I always give to anybody who approaches me, looking to get into pin-ups, is this: "sketch, sketch, sketch... and then sketch again". Quick sketching is like the daily workout for a body builder. It keeps you in shape and it also gets you to where you want to get. I do my sketches with the help of my buddy, but anything is valid, as long as you keep sketching: charcoal, a crayon, a brush, a chalk... even a rock (hey! if you can make it work, anything is valid). Those sketches will prepare you to do finished drawings or paintings: the more you do it, the more you learn. I know this because I'm still learning every time I take a trip with my buddy, my pencil. :)
Pin-up artist by day… and also by night. Well, mostly by night, because night time is my favorite time to paint.