View Full Version : Sandra's 2016 sketches

01-30-2016, 02:34 AM
Hello all,

it's 2016 and since you've helped me improve in my sketching last year with your comments and encouragements, I wanted to start a thread for the sketches I would be doing in 2016. For the first part of the year the sketches are going to be in Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media pad and I will be using my colored pencils until I use them up.

This first sketch is a color chart and testing of Caran D'ache Swisscolor colored pencils in Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media 5.5x8.5 pad (this paper has vellum surface) since this was my first time using this paper.
These next two sketches are sketches I did on different days of various subjects.
I really liked how on this paper I was able to get the Faber-castell Pitt Artist pens to be more-pastel-like by smudging them a bit right after laying a mark down on paper.

As always, comments and critiques are welcome and appreciated.

01-30-2016, 04:46 PM
Always fun to test supplies. Great job.

01-30-2016, 08:21 PM
Thank you Debby. I am hoping to get a sketch done today with these pencils and will try to post it.

Joan T
02-01-2016, 08:22 PM
It is good to test materials. Some materials behave so differently depending on what paper you are using...or how long they have been drying. Can't wait to see what you sketch next.

02-07-2016, 04:37 PM
Joan, thank you. It is true about some materials behaving differently on different papers. On Strathmore 400 Series Drawing pad paper these pencils were actually watersoluble.

Yesterday I started a sketch of a mimosa flower. Then my pencil got dull, so I'll sharpen it and finish the sketch today. Hopefully I'll be able to post it before tonight as I'm trying to become a more regular sketcher.

02-08-2016, 01:46 AM
The next sketch in my sketchbook was that of a mimosa flower from one of the branches my mom and I picked recently. I ended up doing this sketch over two days, finishing it today.

It is in my Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media 5.5x8.5 pad with Caran D'ache Swisscolor colored pencils.


As always, C&C are appreciated and welcome.

02-08-2016, 03:29 PM
Good for you to keep sketching. On this flower sketch, if you want you could add depth and definition to the petals with some shadows. A light purple would work.

Joan T
02-08-2016, 09:57 PM
How great that you are still doing sketching...and from life too. Nice! I agree with Debby that some shading or lines would give the petals some definition.

02-09-2016, 01:31 AM
Sandra, how awesome you are still sketching. You go girl. This sure is the place for helpful advice.

02-10-2016, 03:10 PM
Debby, Joan, and JJ, thank you all. Debby and Joan, the original sketch was done when I was sitting a couple feet away from the flower and did not have my glasses on. For practice, I started another sketch yesterday, incorporating your suggestions and it's turning out better already.

02-20-2016, 05:06 PM
Here is another sketch of part of a mimosa flower, taking into account Debby's and Joan's suggestions. This was done with Caran D'ache Swisscolor colored pencils, and Caran D'ache Classicolor violet watercolor pencil, and old formula Derwent darker yellow watercolor pencil in Strathmore 300 Series 5.5x8.5 Mix Media pad.


I think in this sketch I ended up pushing the darks too dark, but the surface would not allow me to add more color to the lighter part of the flowers.

Vellum works well for Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Pens and I like how I am able to get a smudgy effect with them on this paper, even when working on the "wrong" side of the paper, but with colored pencils I can't get more than maybe seven layers down on this paper before the color starts coming off on the previous layers. Makes me wonder how watercolors are going to handle on this paper.

C&C are welcome and appreciated.

02-21-2016, 03:12 PM
Colored pencils need the right kind of paper, just like any other media needing the right surface to work on to get the effect you want. Smoother papers can only take so many layers of colored pencil. If you want to try the as many layers as you want, a hot press watercolor paper or Stonehenge work for that technique with colored pencils.

Trying different things is how we learn what works and what doesn't. Your sketches are getting better definition. :) Just keep practicing.

Joan T
02-21-2016, 06:16 PM
I like how you are trying to do some shading...it gives more definition. Nice!

You will find that some paper is good for one material and not so great for another. A lot of papers buckle with watercolor, but when I'm just doing a sketch I don't mind that so much. I just hate when the paper starts to pill if you add watercolor...that annoys me. Happy sketching!

02-21-2016, 06:18 PM
Thank you Debby.

02-21-2016, 11:53 PM
On February 11th I did a chart of Caran D'ache Classicolor, Supercolor Soft, and old formula Derwent watercolor pencils. I just now got around to posting this color chart.


I did another sketch today. This is a flower from a bouquet my mom brought home from her morning walk today. This is using Caran D'ache Swisscolor colored pencils in my Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media pad, which is my current sketchbook.


C&C are welcome and appreciated.

02-22-2016, 03:07 PM
Lovely flower.

02-22-2016, 05:04 PM
Thank you Debby. I want to try doing a dry painting with the Faber-Castell Pitt Artist pens on the "wrong" side of the paper in this sketchbook as one of my next experiments, but overall I think I will eventually have colored pencils (or watermedia) and Pitt Artist pens as my main sketching media.

02-26-2016, 12:56 AM
...as I'm trying to become a more regular sketcher.
Hi Sandra,

That's my goal, too.

Mark Taro Holmes in his book, The Urban Sketcher says, "If you can turn off your internal critic and judge yourself only by quantity, you will have discovered the true path to mastery."

Thanks for posting these sketches. Seeing others improve is one of the most inspiring things for me. I hope to see more.

02-27-2016, 04:20 PM
Hi Philip, thank you. I'll try to get some sketching done today (it's been slow getting to sketch lately) and will try to post them tonight or tomorrow.

02-27-2016, 09:24 PM
I did another sketch today. There is room on the page for another sketch, so I will post the page when I finish it (hopefully tomorrow).

02-28-2016, 12:23 AM
Super sketches. Look forward to your new one :)

02-28-2016, 12:51 AM
Thank you JJ.

02-28-2016, 03:43 PM
Nice start and good to see you're trying different media with different tools. I'm still in the process of learning what works and what doesn't for me and the things I use!
Also good work on adding definition into your sketches :)

03-25-2016, 01:16 AM
Aiylah, thank you.

03-27-2016, 08:49 PM
I haven't been on WetCanvas much this month, but I've done a fair bit of sketching in the meantime.

These first two sketches, done in colored pencil (Caran D'ache Swisscolors) on Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media pad contain parts of the scavenger hunt from Feb. 25-Mar. 4 hosted by jmfletch.

This next sketch is a sketch of the flowers I did with the same pencils and paper. These were the flowers dad bought for mom for her birthday, which is why I titled this sketch "Birthday flowers".

With these sketches I was starting to feel like the Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media paper did not like the colored pencils too much, but since I only had brush pens besides colored pencils, I ended up using colored pencils for the next several sketches.

A bit later in the month I went to a figure drawing event and I'll post those sketches in my next post.

C&C are welcome and appreciated.

03-27-2016, 09:14 PM
On March 21st the Monterey Drawing and Painting Group had a Figure Drawing event that I attended. I took my Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media pad and my Caran D'ache Swisscolor colored pencils with me.

The following are the sketches I did during that evening:

I have to admit that prior to this event the last time I did any type of figure drawing likely was back in high school when one of our class projects including drawing our hands. Figure drawing at this event was challenging, but the sketches of those around me were inspiring me to try again and keep going.

As always, C&C are appreciated and are very welcome.

03-27-2016, 09:27 PM
The very next day, my dad, my brother, and I went to San Francisco for my brother to get his passport. Naturally, I could not pass up the chance to go to Blick Art Materials in San Francisco and pencils I'm using now and and a few boards and sketchbook for the future.

On the way home my brother played one of his favorite songs on his phone and I did a brief sketch of the emotions evoked in me by that song. Here is this sketchhttp://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/27-Mar-2016/226500-img015.jpg

After I was done with the song sketch I did a sketch of the hills by the roadside. It's amazing how green they are at the end of the traditional rainy season in California when everywhere else in the Northern hemisphere it is hay-like. Robert, you might remember such hills from the time you lived in San Francisco. Both of these sketches were done using Caran D'ache Swisscolor colored pencils on Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media pad. The hills sketch is below.

The pencils I got at Blick Art Materials are Staedler Mars Lumograph pencils in a set of 6 with HB, 2B, 4B, 6B, 7B, and 8B. Later that evening after we got home I did swatches of the pencils and I liked them. A few days later I did a sketch of what was left of the Caesar salad I had for lunchhttp://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/27-Mar-2016/226500-img017.jpg

Comparisons of Derwent HB, 2B, 4B, and 6B I did after I found my old kit from a How to Draw I took years earlier showed they're really similar to the Staedler pencils. So the Derwent pencils will redelegated to my field sketching kit.

As always, C&C are welcome and appreciated.

03-28-2016, 03:16 PM
Keep sketching. :) Keep learning and stretching yourself.

03-28-2016, 04:33 PM
Debby, thank you. I certainly plan on doing so. I did a sketch of a rose yesterday, but the page has room for another rose attempt, so I'll post the page when finished.

Joan T
03-28-2016, 09:39 PM
Good to see you trying different materials and even sketching from a live model!:cat:

03-29-2016, 05:29 PM
Thank you Joan. I definitely plan on posting more sketches with the new pencils I am using. Going to finish the page with the rose sketch today and post it tonight.

03-30-2016, 01:50 AM
Today I finished the page with the sketch of a rose I did on Sunday, so I'm posting the entire page today.


These were two of the roses my mom received as a birthday gift at work in and she had them in her office for about ten days until she brought them home at the end of last week. The previous time I tried sketching a rose it was not as good as I thought it would be and it was difficult last time, so I decided to give it another try. This time I did it using Derwent Graphic pencils (last time I sketched the rose in colored pencils). I had my glasses on when I was doing these sketches, but I was sitting from halfway across the room.

C&C are welcome and appreciated.

04-29-2016, 01:03 AM
It's been a slow month sketching-wise, especially with me not posting often. On the brighter side, I've been able to do several sketches, so I'll go ahead and post them. Since March, I've been using graphite to try to focus on values and improve my drawing skills.

This day I felt like doing a sketch just to do the sketch.
Nearly two Sundays ago we went to Julia Pfeiffer State Park with my dad's friend, so naturally I took my sketching with me. This time I had my Derwent Graphic pencils and tortillions with me. Here are my sketches from that day.

The sketch at the bottom of this last page is a poor attempt of a cutting board that was higher than eye level for me. I did this sketch before I realized I did another sketch on the next page.

C&C are appreciated and welcome and provide a big incentive for me to keep going with these.

04-29-2016, 01:10 AM
Here is a sketch I did last Friday of a flower that my mom brought home with her a few days earlier. It smelled like jasmine green tea, even when she first brought it, so I decided to sketch it last Friday before it wilted. Here again I am using Staedler Mars Lumograph pencils in Strathmore 300 Series Mix Media pad, as I was using in my previous sketches.

Here it is:


I am not sure why the 7B and the 8B pencils felt harder on this paper than the 6B or if it was the pencils or the paper.

C&C welcome and appreciated. Your feedback really helps me.

04-29-2016, 05:03 PM
Great group of sketches. Glad to see you are still sketching.

04-29-2016, 07:54 PM
Thank you Debby. I'm going to try to do a sketch each day, so will try to be posting more often.

05-14-2016, 01:22 AM
At the end of April daily sketching did not happen so much, as I got sick on the 29th of April. I still wanted to get a sketch in while I was sick, so I sketched a candle and candle holder my brother and I gave our mom for Mother's Day one year.


Even before I got sick, my mom brought daisy flowers home but during my sick time I did not feel like sketching them. This day I decided to do a sketch of them.
This was when the flowers were getting to be really wilted. Another time mom brought home these little leaves and part of a branch and the inner leaves really looked like flowers. Before they got too wilted I sketched and the sketch is below.

Since it's been a while since I did a sketch of a still life and the fruit plate was looking yummy, I did a sketch before I got too hungry to eat the fruit.

C&C are welcome and appreciated.

05-14-2016, 02:44 PM
Sorry you got sick. Hope you are feeling better now. The pear shows how much you are improving your sketching with all your practice. :thumbsup:

Joan T
05-18-2016, 09:22 PM
Your sketching is really coming along nicely and your shading is getting better.

05-28-2016, 01:33 AM
Thank you Joan. I've continued sketching for most of this month, I just haven't gotten to posting the sketches.

These first couple of sketches are sketches of rose blossoms. The first sketch was not a very good attempt, but I decided to post it anyway.

On May 16, I went to the art meetup event. This time the theme was Imagery. The person organizing this particular event was reading excerpts from poems or short stories and we were sketching what came to mind.

Here are some of my sketches from this event:

I'll post the next several sketches in my next post.

C&C are welcome and appreciated.

05-28-2016, 01:48 AM
Here is another sketch from the Imagery art meetup event I went to.

Another time I was sketching either a couple of leaves or a flower.

Several days later my mom and I went to Peet's Coffee and Tea and I took my sketchbook with me.

I did a few sketches.

I have more sketches that I'll post in the next post.

C&C are welcome and appreciated.

05-28-2016, 01:55 AM
In the days after my previous sketch I may have gotten a bit bored so I tried sketching a subject that has been difficult for me - a wing of an eagle.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/28-May-2016/226500-img042.jpg (I'm not sure why the uploader is uploading it sideways).

Earlier this week I was going to Saratoga after dropping my dad off at Santa Cruz and meeting him in Santa Cruz on my way back. Since I wanted to sketch while in Santa Cruz, I brought my sketchbook with me. When I met my dad, I wanted to walk around the university campus in Santa Cruz, so I did some sketches in my sketchbook.


I was not able to do a sketch today. I'll try to do some sketches tomorrow.

C&C are welcome and appreciated. Thank you.

05-30-2016, 03:12 PM
You are doing wonderful practicing. Just a quick comment on your cup. The bottom ellipse needs to be a little bit rounder, to mimic the top rim of the cup. You are doing great. Keep it up.

Joan T
05-30-2016, 08:22 PM
Glad to see you are still getting to do some sketching. The more you do the better you will get. I like the shapes on your flower petals. Shading those is difficult. The best thing is to draw, draw, draw!

09-01-2016, 02:00 AM
With life having been up and down several times during this summer so far, plus a trip to Ukraine, I have not done as many sketches as I would have liked. I did some sketches, however, during the trip and been trying to get into more regular sketching after the trip.

Here are the better sketches during my trip:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Sep-2016/226500-img046.jpg This is a picture of one of the cats my uncle and his family have.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Sep-2016/226500-img047.jpg This is one of the figurines in their home.

These were done in my new Bee Paper Aquabee Deluxe Sketchbook with Staedler Mars Lumograph pencils. As this was a new sketchbook, I decided to include a color/grayscale chart I did in June.

C&C are welcome and appreciated. Thank you.

09-01-2016, 02:11 AM
After we came back to the United States, I did a few sketches at home.


09-01-2016, 02:19 AM
More sketches at home, all done with Staedler Mars Lumograph pencils in Aquabee Deluxe Sketchbook.


After another sketch at home, I went to Projector Landscape Sketching Meet-up with the Monterey Drawing and Painting Group. Here are my sketches from that event:


09-01-2016, 02:24 AM
More sketches at home, all done with Staedler Mars Lumograph pencils in Aquabee Deluxe Sketchbook.


After another sketch at home, I went to Projector Landscape Sketching Meet-up with the Monterey Drawing and Painting Group. Here are my better sketches from that event:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Sep-2016/226500-img057.jpg These last two sketches I have been experimenting, trying to see how well watercolor and ink work on the paper in the Aquabee Deluxe Sketchbook.

C&C are welcome.

09-01-2016, 02:32 AM
I'm finally caught up with the sketches I have done so far. Here are two more I've done at home.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Sep-2016/226500-img059.jpg Thinking that with the color sketches at the Meetup event, I decided to give watercolor pencils another try on this paper (I'm using Bee Paper Aquabee Deluxe Sketchbook for this sketch and will continue to use this paper until I finish this sketchbook). This is done with Caran D'ache Classicolor Watercolor Pencils and watercolor pencils are better on this paper, though buckling of the paper gets to me.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Sep-2016/226500-img060.jpg Today I did this sketch of half of an apple and then after seeing the gorgeous sunset outside, wanted to sketch it. I knew I had maybe five minutes until the colors changed to where it would be all shadows, so I decided to use my Staedler Mars Lumograph graphite pencils here.

C&C are welcome and appreciated.

09-01-2016, 02:53 PM
Hope you had a wonderful vacation to the Ukraine. Good to see you are still practicing. I noticed several comments about the medium you were trying to use and the paper not playing well together. If you want to use wet media, it definitely helps to get paper that will take the water or in the case of markers, alcohol.

09-01-2016, 05:48 PM
Debby, thank you. I think part of the problem was that I was using more water than was needed, but also I was experimenting and was trying to see how much water or ink I could use before the paper was to the point of not being able to handle it. I've seen gorgeous watercolor sketches done on this paper at the Projector Landscape sketching meet-up, so watercolor is definitely possible in this sketchbook. I'm just not liking how it behaves on this paper.

Munin Raven
09-05-2016, 01:48 PM
Nice to see lots of sketches and experiments. It can only lead to great things. I hope you keep it up. :thumbsup:

09-12-2016, 01:06 AM
Good to see that you are getting in a lot of sketches!