Author: Chris_Lockwood, Contributing Editor
|Next step, begin inking!
I usually start with the eye as it gives me a focus, then I work from the nose to the tail.....just my way....you can start where you feel comfortable. At this initial stage in the drawing it is important to try to pen the strokes in the direction that the fur is growing, so check your reference often.
This is where I find that I get lost in the flicking and suddenly notice I have gone the wrong way. With practice you will notice when you reach this point and refer to the image more often.
For the darkest areas here I used a brush pen.
|Your drawing should look something like this after you finish the first layer of strokes....notice the longer strokes on the tail.
I know it doesn't look so pretty at this stage but not to worry. You remember I said that this technique was very time consuming..... so now what we do is start all over again but this time work all over the picture. Use the same strokes to darken up the fur to give shape and form.
Again, check your reference picture to make sure you are darkening the right areas.
|You can't really rush this stage....take your time and try not to concentrate on one area too much as there is a danger of going too dark, too soon. Move all over the picture adding strokes here, there and everywhere....slowly building depth and tone.
I hope you can see in the picture below how the furry look is emerging. In the tail, I added quite a lot of squiggly ended strokes to try to make it look fluffy.
|Now you have the basics. The rest is up to you.
Questions that you might ask yourself are:
Have you achieved enough depth to the fur? Are your shadows dark enough? Are there areas that need more defining or less?
It is up to you, the artist, to decide when the drawing is finished!
I am quite happy with my Squirrel... I think his body fur is a little stiff....(note to myself) need more practice. Finally, I sat him on an ink wash to anchor him to the ground and he is destined to be framed and given to my daughter who is squirrel mad.
|I hope you have enjoyed watching him come to life....|