Reclining sculpture – digital sketching

Let me start with the obvious – this looks weird.  In my defence, so does the sculpture I was sketching (see below).

My intention here was to do a quick sketch using my under-used iPad, or rather “unused for drawing” iPad.  It’s been otherwise employed for hours of Netflix and BBC viewing on the daily commute.

One of my artist friends who got the same kit as me at the same time commented about using the Ink Bleed Brush on a drawing.

As I hadn’t used anything much other than the pencil yet I thought I’d give it a try.  With a few provisos though to make it a “realistic” experience.

If I’d been sketching this with a sketchbook and ink then there would be no “layers”, no “undo” and no “magical” help.

So that’s how I drew it, I refused to use the Undo function and it was on a single layer (*initially).  I tried to draw it in the same way as if it had been analogue, spending as much time as possible “observing” and sketching whilst not looking at the paper screen that much.

Using my eye as the measuring device, looking for overall large shapes and lines first.  It came out OK as a quick half hour sketch, I didn’t slavishly follow all the little indents and shapes but just gave a vague impression.

*that background layer – I mentioned that I wasn’t going to use layers, after all there’s no layers on a straight-to-ink drawing in the sketchbook.  If there was a pencil underdrawing then that could be considered a layer but I find that direct sketching where all mistakes will be recorded for posterity tends to focus the mind more.

However the drawing was definitely lacking something, it was a bit hard to determine the shape from the background so I added a dark background layer and then erased away where it had gone over the lines into the drawing.

I’m sure there’s a way to do this with a “Bucket Fill”, and there’s also something called Masking Layers – but I can’t seem to get either to work.  I’m 100% certain it’s user error and misunderstanding so hopefully I’ll learn how to do that properly.

It’s come out OK though, acceptable for what it is – just a skill-building sketch.


6 thoughts on “Reclining sculpture – digital sketching”

    1. Really? 😬

      Oh good, that’s definitely a good thing then. Thank you very much Kim, I’ll stick with it then, along with the ‘loose watercolour’ – opposite ends of the spectrum.

      1. You definitely should. The best thing about working different mediums, in my opinion, is that you never get bored or tired with them. You just switch between them when you feel like it 🙂 For me, digital drawing/painting is brilliant for some relaxing time on the sofa 🙂

  1. It looks like you captured the form of the sculpture very well. I would say it was definitely challenging, a skill building exercise for certain. What do you think of the ink bleed brush? I think it does a wonderful job of mimicking pen and ink on paper.

    1. I’d say it does a fair job, a few definite bonuses;
      – unlike a dip pen it doesn’t wait until you’ve nearly completed your drawing before deciding to dump a big fat blob right in the whitest area
      – no need to wash your hands, clothes, worktop, eyes, etc. after dip drawing for an hour.
      – if you’re overcoming the fear of drawing in a public place then it’s true that you’ll go relatively unnoticed with an iPad add compared with setting up with a pot of ink and taking out a sketchbook

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