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“Troy” pet portrait, and amur leopard in soft pastels!

"Troy" - 11 x 14inch commission in coloured pencil. Art by Wild Portrait Artist. SOLD.

 

troy finished low res watermarked for fb and insta
“Troy” – 11 x 14inch commission in coloured pencil.

This beautiful boy was one of my Christmas commissions. His endearing puppy-dog-eyes and sweet expression were so much fun to render  It was so refreshing to work with paint thinner again for my coloured pencil art too. I didn’t realise how much I missed it!

This piece was drawn using Caran d’Ache Luminance, Caran d’Ache Pablo, Faber Castell Polychromos and Derwent Drawing coloured pencils. The paper I used was Fabriano Artistico 140lb Hot Pressed Watercolour Paper. I used Daler Rowney odourless paint thinner to blend. Touch-Up Texture and Titanium White powder were used on the chest to pull out the white hairs and highlights on his collar.

My sped-up tutorial is available to watch on YouTube now. The 2 hour version of tutorial will also be available for my Patreon supporters at the $4 tier very soon!

 

I also completed my drawing of an amur leopard in soft pastels last week.

"Determination" - 30 x 40cm portrait of an amur leopard in pastels.
“Determination” – 30 x 40cm portrait of an amur leopard in pastels.

 This piece is now available for sale on my Etsy, so check it out if you’re interested! 

This was such a fun experiment. I may have started off a little wonky on the chin and mouth area, but once I got the hang of the medium it was as natural as riding a bike.

The tools I used to create this piece are Rembrandt soft pastels and Stabilo Carbothello pastel pencils on Clairefontaine pastelmat. Reference photo by Katerina Mirus from Wildlife Reference Photos, used with permission.

Soft pastel is a really enjoyable medium to work in. Expect to see more in this medium from me in the future! I can definitely see myself doing lots of little landscape studies in this medium.

The fully commentated tutorial video for this piece will be available this weekend! I’ll also be reviewing and discussing my thoughts on the brands I used to make this piece too. I might end up splitting it into two videos depending on how long it is. Stay tuned!

 

Last but not least I also started on a new coloured pencil drawing this week.

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“Mythical Beast” – work in progress. Coloured pencils on Fisher 400 sanded paper. I’m about an hour into this drawing so far.

I’m so excited to share this one with you. The concept to this drawing has been swirling around in my head for months now and I finally have a spare moment to start putting it onto paper! 😀 The subject for this drawing is my absolute favourite animal – the okapi. They are an endangered species native to the Congo and their closest relative is the giraffe. When they were first discovered they were so strange-looking that they were thought to be mythical creatures – hence the title of this piece – “Mythical Beast.”

I’m trying to get a sense of mystic surrealism in this portrait so I chose to have the okapi looking up at the aurora borealis – something you would never normally see in the tropical forests! It also gives me the excuse to use lots of pretty blues and greens, muahaha!

I’m using Caran d’Ache Pablos, Caran d’Ache Luminance, Faber Castell Polychromos and Derwent Drawing pencils for this drawing. I’m using powder blender to blend the background, but I’ll also be trying out paint thinner when I get to the okapi itself as I’ve never tried using paint thinner on sanded paper before! I still marvel at how quickly I can get things done with the powder blender. I’m only an hour and ten minutes into the drawing so far, and my background is already almost finished!

I’m also trying out Fisher 400 paper for the first time for this drawing. The tooth of the paper is wonderfully consistent, and in my opinion is superior to UArt paper.

 

This is turning into a long blog post so I’m going to leave it here for now! I’ve got lots more in store for you guys so keep your eyes peeled 🙂

 

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The Home Stretch

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Just a small update this week. I’m on the home stretch with Jack and Jess’s portrait now! I should hopefully be finished by the end of next week. Still recording my progress on this drawing, then I’ll have over 116gb (20+ hours!) of footage to edit down for youtube. I will be uploading my first vlog this coming week too, a studio tour of my art desk. Stay tuned!

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Jess and Jack: Coloured Pencil commission work in progress

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“Jess and Jake” (working title) – 30 x 42cm coloured pencil commission on Fabriano Artistico HP Watercolour Paper.

Today I started work on a coloured pencil commission of two very sweet and loving dogs, Jess (on the left) and Jack (on the right). These two sweethearts belong to a friend’s mum so I’ve had the pleasure of meeting them multiple times now! I’ve been looking forward to this drawing for a while! Just look how snug and adorable they look!

One of my favourite coloured pencil artists, Lisa Clough, inspired me to do youtube video recordings, so this is my first ever piece where I’ll be recording my full process on video! Stay tuned for the video soon after I complete this piece – it will be a fully commentated tutorial of my process and the techniques I use. I hope any artists out there who see it will find it helpful and I’m sure it will be interesting for commissioners as well to see how I create my artwork 🙂 Really looking forward to it!

Being on camera forces you to focus on what you are doing. This is amazingly useful! I’ve been struggling to concentrate recently and keep getting distracted by other things. But while I’ve been working on this drawing under the camera’s lens, I’ve been able to keep going for 3 hours straight without break – an extremely long time for a fidget pot like me!

This piece is A3 sized (30 x 42cm) so it’s quite large. I’m three and a half hours in so far (not counting the time it took to do the rough sketch). It’s probably going to take around 18 hours to finish.

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“Mini” portrait commission in graphite and process

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“Mini” 11 x 14 inch commission, graphite on Fabriano Artistico HP Watercolour Paper.

I’ve been in a bit of an art slump recently after accidentally throwing tea all over this commission and having to start on it all over again! I hate it being so delayed (It was meant to be a Christmas gift! D: ) but now that I pushed through my slump and finished it, in a way I’m glad I spilt tea on the old version despite my embarassment. I think the portrait turned out for the better in the end! I really love this piece, I think the sheen on Mini’s fur came out really well without being too obtrusive. 🙂

Tools used: Caran d’Ache Grafwood pencils, AIN 4B 0.5mm lead, one Faber Castell 9000 8B pencil, Fabriano Artistico HP Watercolour Paper

 

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I also have something special in the works – quite possibly the biggest coloured pencil piece I’ve ever worked on! I’ve not drawn anything for myself for a while, and I’ve also not done any works in coloured pencil since November. I’m really looking forward to starting it. Stay tuned!

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Work in Progress: “Mini” Portrait Commission in Graphite

 

I’m currently working on an 11x14inch graphite portrait of a very cute dog called Mini. This is where I’m up to so far:

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“Mini” work in progress, 11 x 14 inch commission in graphite

 

Below is a little progress shot I took a couple of hours back. All three stages of my artwork process are pretty much visible in this WIP shot! On the muzzle I have just started adding the lights and darks with a 9B pencil. On the right hand side of the face and ear I have smoothed it all out with a blending stump and roughly added the fur direction with a Mono Zero eraser. On the left hand size is what it looks like when (mostly) finished, most of the details have been added and the values are just about right. I’m constantly adjusting the lights and darks throughout the whole process.

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For those curious I use Caran d’Ache Grafwood pencils for all of my graphite work, they are my favourite graphite pencils ever! I also use a 0.5 mechanical pencil with AIN Stein 4B lead for the detail work such as hairs and whiskers.

 

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Chando work in progress

Where has all the daylight gone! My desk can’t hold any more lamps and it’s still not light enough! This has to be my least favourite part of winter. It’s always so dark. Roll on, spring!

Been steadily working on my current commission of Chando the ridgeback. It’s 21 x 29cm (a tiny bit smaller than A4) and is in coloured pencil. Orange and blue have to be my favourite complementary colours, so I’m trying to work that into this portrait a little. I’ve been layering my flat colours on the muzzle and right side of the face, it just needs a few more layers with paint thinner and then I’ll be drawing in the fur.

Work in progress shots below 😉

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“Moses” Finished Portrait Commission and Progress

Last week I finished a graphite portrait of a gorgeous, sweet old dog called Moses as a gift for my client’s sister. Now that she’s seen it and it’s been sent off to Germany, I’ve been given the go-ahead to show it to you all! 🙂 I had a lot of fun with this one, especially with the detail work on Moses’s nose. The nose is quite possibly my favourite part of  cat and dog portraits to draw!

"Moses" - 29 x 21cm portrait commission. Graphite on Fabriano Artistico Hot Pressed Watercolour Paper.
“Moses” – 29 x 21cm portrait commission. Graphite on Fabriano Artistico Hot Pressed Watercolour Paper.

Below you can see my step-by step process behind the portrait. I make sure I start out with a very detailed rough sketch, which is especially important in close-up portraits where there is a lot of detail in certain areas like the nose. I then “blush” graphite powder onto the paper in the darkest areas of the portrait. This gives myself a better idea of the lights and darks. Then I build up the darks from there, after which I work on adding all of the fine details. My final step is to take a step back to see if the values on the drawing are correct, and lighten/darken areas accordingly. A lot of pencil artists tend to work on a drawing completing everything in one square inch at a time, but my mind just doesn’t work that way. I have to get a generalised plan of what I’m trying to achieve and then gradually and evenly flesh everything out.

moses walkthrough

Up next is a coloured pencil portrait of a lovely ridgeback dog. I’ll be able to share work in progess shots of my next commission with you, so stay tuned for updates in the next few days! See you soon!

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“Faith” – Finished German Shepherd Portrait and Step-by-Step

I added the finishing touches to this portrait last night! There is nothing more satisfying than finishing a drawing and taking it down off my drawing board 😀 It took me a while to come up with a name for this one… but I think the name “Faith” is pretty apt, don’t you? The original piece is up for sale on my ebay page, please check it out if you’re interested!

"Faith" - 21 x29cm original portrait in coloured pencil
“Faith” – 21 x 29cm, coloured pencil on fabriano artistico hot pressed 140lb watercolour paper.

The reference I used was from wildlifereferencephotos.com. When I first saw the photo I was desperate to draw it! The dog looks so full of life and has such a gorgeous expression. I just hope I did it justice!

If you remember me mentioning a few blog posts ago, this portrait was also my first time using Fabriano Artistico paper rather than my usual Bristol Vellum. I think I can safely say that I much prefer it to the Bristol Vellum! It felt like I could layer coloured pencil endlessly on this paper which made it so easy to get details in. Definitely recommended.

Here’s the step-by-step process for this piece:

"Faith" drawing step-by-step

I also recorded all of the pencils I used for this portrait, just for interest’s sake. I used around 40 different colours for this portrait. It just goes to show that there is no magic “perfect” colour, you have to blend a lot of colours together to create depth in your piece.

Faber Castell Polychromos:

Black, dark sepia, burnt umber, dark indigo, venitian red, burnt ochre, brown ochre, cinnamon.

Caran D’ache Pablo:

Indigo blue, raspberry pink, cocoa, ochre, russet, apricot.

Caran D’ache Luminance:

White, titanium buff,primrose, brown ochre 10%, brunt ochre 10%, brown ochre 50%, burnt ochre 50%, burnt sienna 10%, sepia 10%, sepia 50%, sepia, french grey, raw umber 50%, cassed earth, crimson aubergine, violet grey, anthraquinoid pink, apricot, brown ochre, raw sienna, burnt ochre, burnt sienna, russet, french grey 30%, olive brown 10%, burnt sienna 50%

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German Shepherd Portrait Update: The Home Stretch!

Just a quick update on this guy – I’m roughly 60% of the way through now. Got all of my base colours down minus the metal on the collar. Now that I know where all the markings and shadows need to go it’s just adding detail everywhere and fleshing out all the fur. 🙂

I’m not really sure how many hours I’ve spent on this piece – to be honest I lost count! But just to give you a rough idea, the gums and teeth alone took me a little over 2 hours to do last night.

I am currently open for pet portrait commissions and have 2 slots open for Christmas. Email me at wildportraitartist@gmail.com or check out the contact me page to order!

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German Shepherd portrait on Fabriano Artistico paper

I started a new dog portrait last Thursday and decided to draw it on my newly-purchased Fabriano Artistico 140lb hot-pressed watercolour paper.

My first impressions of the paper is that it is a slightly smoother and much denser paper than my usual Strathmore Bristol Vellum. The colours layer beautifully and because it’s such a heavy weight I don’t feel like the tooth of the paper is flattening out as quickly as the bristol vellum, which was one of the issues I faced in my Knobbed Hornbill drawing. Not very far into this portrait yet so we’ll see how I feel about Fabriano Artistico further down the road but so far I’m very happy with it and I think it’s my new favourite paper!

Not a commission this time, just drawing for fun! Photo reference used with permission from Wildlifereferencephotos.com by photographer Sue Dudley.

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