Archive | May 2012

Fighting elf – Lineart

fighting elf

Fighting elf. Lineart done with Staedtler pigment liner. Ulla Hennig, May 2012

One of my goals for the coming month is to get better with drawing people. I found out that the web offers a lot of help in this regard: There are a lot of tutorials on YouTube, there is an amazing website called posemaniacs, and there is the website “Drawing tutorials Online” where I have been a member for more than half a year now.

So I printed out a fighting pose. I also wanted to get some clothes on the figure in question and decided to draw a fighting elf.

In a second step I will colour the drawing with my markers and will then upload the finished piece.

Dragon # 3

Brown dragon

Brown Dragon. Markers on drawing paper. Ulla Hennig, May 2012

Do you recognize the dragon? It is the same as in this blogpost, I just coloured it in a different way and put it into different surroundings. I’d copied the ink drawing in order to be able to play around with colours and background.

Another Dragon

Green Dragon

Green and red dragon. Copic markers on Drawing paper. Ulla Hennig, May 2012

Yes, it is another dragon. I must admit that I am deeply fascinated by these creatures. In Germany we have a lot of folk tales describing dragons as evil creatures, which threaten to destroy villages and kill innocent people until some young prince / knight appears on the scene and manages to do away with the monster.

But there are also the Eragon books in which dragons and their riders play an important part in the fight against evil; and there is also an author called Anne McCaffrey who is famous for her “Dragonsriders of Pern” books. In these Pern Sagas dragons help their human friends to fight against a biological enemy by burning it with their flames.

In the painting above I decided to put the painting on a background made in Photoshop. Doing it this way I not only saved ink but also could play around with the background colour.

Shades of Brown and Grey

Various shades of brown and a quick sketch of a horse. Ulla Hennig May 2012

I vaguely remember that at school we had to do that: draw squares and then fill them with certain colours. You had to be very careful not to make a mess with your colours: not to create mud with them and not to let your paint go outside the squares. I deeply hated doing that. We did the colour wheel as well, but I was not interested in colour theory and mentally skipped the whole subject.

Now, many years later, I know that it is important to “know your colours”. I can shade with a pencil – and I want to learn to shade with colours. And in order to do that I have to know how my colours look like on the paper which I will use for the final painting. Yes, there copic colour charts on the web, but as they are a printed out version they differ from the colour you get when you put the copic on the paper.

Doing these colour charts is also something which can be done when you don’t feel like creating something. You need a ruler to draw the lines, and your copics, and the only brain challenging thing is to get the right number for the colour written down.

Green Dragon


Green dragon. Copics on Drawing paper. Ulla Hennig May 2012

I love dragons, and I love to paint dragons.

With this one I did some experiments with my copics and tried to blend and mix colours. I’ve got a copy of ┬áthe line drawing of the dragon, so I can really play around – add various backgrounds, try different colour combinations and such.

Ball – drawing exercise done with pencil

Ball. Drawing exercise done with an HB pencil. Ulla Hennig, May 2012

Yes, I’ve come back to drawing and to Drawing might not be so very important when you use oil pastels as a medium, but with copic markers it is. So I did this ball, and after having finished it I wonder how to do this with colour, and especially how to do this with copic markers.

Dead Tree

Dead tree

Dead tree. Copic ciaos on drawing paper. Ulla Hennig May 2012

I had a photography as a reference image for this tree, but I decided to simplify the drawing. I used some of my new copics for that drawing – a grey and a light yellow. You will notice that one of the browns needed a refill badly! It is called “Dull Ivory” and I use it pretty much, for trees mainly.

Bird of Paradise

Bird of paradise. Copic ciao markers on drawing board. Ulla Hennig May 2012

I did this for the May challenge over at the botanicals/florals forum at Wet Canvas. The challenge included painting the flower in an Art Nouveau style. Well, I admit it is very much my interpretation of Art Nouveau…

I had a reference photo for the painting from the Reference Images Libarary at Wet Canvas, but I simplified it quite a bit.

The Colour Blue

copic blue colours

colour studies. Ulla Hennig May 2012

This is nothing but a colour swatch and some doodles. When I did this I noticed how big the leap from B24 to B 29 is. It is almost too big for shading–but a nice colour when you want to apply strokes in order to get some structures on the painted object.

I also noticed how important it is to do these things–the colours on the caps of the markers don’t give you the “real” colour on the paper. I also noticed that I can do this even when I think that there is no time for any art activity–there’s always time for doodling!

Two Elves and a Tree

Two elves

Two elves and a tree. Ink and copics on drawing paper. Ulla Hennig, May 2012

I am still knee deep in the world of fantasy. I had no reference for that drawing. The only thing I had in mind before I began with the pencil sketch was one elf and one tree and something for the elf to look at. And somehow this drawing developed.

And for the first time I applied the copic markers in some kind of pointilism – applying one dot beneath the other in order to get a kind of grassy look. I used the brush end of the marker for it. The next time I will use the chisel end trying to get more defined strokes.