Readers of my personal blog (Archipelagoes) will already know that a few months ago I decided to try to teach myself how to draw. It took me several weeks before I started to make satisfying progress, but since then I’ve learned just how pleasurable a hobby it can be. It turns out there’s an effort-to-reward cycle with drawing that is five to ten times faster than writing — in this way it’s like crack cocaine for creative people. I promise to seek help if the monkey gets too heavy.
An example of what I’m doing. I produced the somewhat dark-themed picture above as a submission to Dinotopia illustrator James Gurney’s “Art by Committee” challenge (which he hosts on his fascinating blog, Gurney Journey). This month, Gurney invited his readers to submit works depicting the hypothetical owner of this (actually quite real) business card:
As you’ll probably deduce from the drawing, my mind went in directions both sci-fi and seedy — triggered mainly by contemplating the male reaction to the implausibly optimistic marketing promise “A Wish Come True”. In terms of materials, I took a step back from charcoal on this one, using it mainly for the rain-esque backdrop and for a bit of skin tone and shadowing. Most of the drawing is rendered in graphite.