Translation: I’ll be dissecting one of my (better) failed drawings.
A few months ago, I made a black & white drawing which – despite the improvements I made to it – didn’t seem quite good enough to post in one of my daily art posts on here. I don’t know why I thought this, but I did.
Still, rather than letting this drawing go to waste, I thought that I’d give you a detailed description of how I tried to improve this picture- in case it helps you to learn how to draw using just two colours.
At the very least, I hope that this article is an interesting “behind the scenes” look at how I make my drawings.
Anyway, here’s the original version of my untitled drawing:
“Untitled Punk Drawing (original version)” By C. A. Brown
When I’d finished this drawing, something didn’t quite look right. It looked ok, but it didn’t really look that great. So, I abandoned it for a few hours and then I returned to it and made a few subtle improvements. Here’s the improved version of the drawing:
“Untitled Punk Drawing (improved version)” By C. A. Brown
In case the changes aren’t that noticeable, here’s an altered version of the original (un-improved) drawing with all of the major changes highlighted and numbered. I’ll provide a list of what I actually did below the picture, in case it’s useful to you.
[CLICK FOR LARGER IMAGE] I’ve highlighted and numbered the changes in colour. Hopefully this is still readable if you’re colourblind. But, if not, then I apologise.
…And, here’s what I did in each area of the picture in order to improve it:
1) To break up the large white area in the background, I added a cross-hatched floor to the bottom of the picture. I also added a few curved black lines to the bottom of the white area in the background, in order to make it look more like a curtain or a backdrop.
2) Both the lead singer’s and the guitarist’s trousers were shaded too lightly in the original picture. This meant that their trousers kind of blended into the background slightly and didn’t really stand out. So, I darkened both of their trousers using both black paint and additional scribbling.
3) The cymbal stands in the original drawing were scribbled fairly lightly and they kind of blended into the white background behind them. So, I darkened them quite significantly, so that they stood out and were more noticeable.
4) Since I’d decided to make the background look like a curtain, I added thin curved lines to it in order to give it a more curtain-like texture.
5) I’d forgotten to shade the singer’s microphone properly. This also meant that part of the un-shaded microphone blended into the singer’s neck slightly. So, I added some light shading to it, to differentiate it from everything surrounding it.
6) I added a thin curved line to the singer’s thumb, in order to make it look slightly more realistic. I’m surprised that I haven’t used this technique in any of my other drawings yet.
7) The white scratchboard on the guitar was the same colour as the guitarist’s arm and this meant that his arm wasn’t immediately recognisable at a glance. So, I added a dot pattern to the guitar in order to make the guitarist’s arm stand out against it.
8) The guitarist’s hair and the lead singer’s hair were both the same colour. This wouldn’t have been a problem, except that their heads were right next to each other and it made it difficult to tell them apart at a glance. So, I added a lot more shading to the guitarist’s hair, so that there was more contrast between the two musicians.
I also made a few other smaller changes that probably aren’t worth mentioning here.
But, if you take anything away from this article, it should be that – when you’re drawing in black and white – you should make sure that any two areas of your picture that are next to each other are shaded differently from each other.
Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂