Archives for category: life drawing

I love autumn! This is the time of the year that really inspires me to paint with warm, comforting colors. This still life features a persimmon and a pumpkin – beautiful seasonal produce. IMG_7994

Unlike the other paintings I am currently selling at ArtworkbyBob, this piece is available already framed and ready to hang!

I’ll be updating again soon with more fall-themed still life paintings, so stay tuned!


I did this drawing during my last class of the semester at The Watts Atelier. The class was head drawing, and we usually use newsprint and charcoal. I decided, however, to try something a little bit different for the last class and opted instead for some brown paper and graphite. I used Bordon & Riley’s #840 Kraft paper, which is a lot of fun to draw on and a bit of a change of pace for me. I started my drawing with graphite and added highlights with white charcoal.



Some good friends of mine recently got married, so I decided to make this portrait of their son, River, as a wedding gift. I already had some photo reference of River playing chess that I had shot for another project.

I made this drawing using a technique that combines graphite pencil and charcoal powder. First, I draw the head and features in pencil without any tone. I use a hard pencil at first and then go over the lines with a 2B pencil to darken them. After I have a linear drawing established, I apply the charcoal powder to darken in the shadows. (this is where it can get a little messy.) I use a large bristle brush to scrub the charcoal powder onto the paper. It’s important to keep the drawing horizontal on a flat, hard surface. I go back to using graphite once the shadows are blocked in to add more detail and refine the image. Much of the original drawing is usually wiped out by the charcoal. I like this technique for drawing portraits because it’s very painterly and fast. You can get nice effects with the charcoal powder that would take much longer to achieve with just graphite alone.

My friends loved the drawing, which made me really happy. I think River liked it, too.

Another Friday, another life drawing session at the Watts Atelier. This week, I again decided to make a sketchbook drawing with ball point pen, white gel pen and marker. I had fun with this one:

This was the last friday night workshop for the current semester at Watts. I’ll have three weeks off of classes, during which I’m planning on doing a lot more painting. I have a few projects that I will hopefully be posting about soon. More on that later!

While I lived in New York, I often attended life drawing sessions at Spring Studio in SoHo. I usually just brought a sketchbook and a ballpoint pen rather than drag my 18″ by 24″ drawing board two miles from my apartment. drawing in ballpoint pen takes a different discipline than drawing in charcoal, which is obviously much more forgiving. I actually find that I much prefer these small, relatively quick efforts over my charcoal drawings.

I haven’t done a life drawing in my sketchbook for quite awhile, so I decided to change up my friday night life drawing routine and bring my sketchbook to draw in rather than the usual newsprint pad and charcoal pencils. Here is my drawing, which I worked on for about an hour and a half.

sketchbook figure drawing

Just a few recent life studies from head drawing class at The Watts Atelier:

Hi. I’m Catherine, but folks tend to call me Bob.

I’m an art student, aspiring photographer, intern and math tutor. Mostly, I just like to draw things and photograph stuff.

Since I’d rather not spend a lot of time talking about myself, I thought it would be better to kick things off with a random smattering of work from the not-too-distant past.

Just one of many life drawings from school. Charcoal on newsprint.

Shot this while I was still living in Manhattan. This is on 2nd avenue, not far from my old apartment.

Shot this in North Park recently