Sketchbook Crawling: Christmas / Boxing Day 2017

This should have been done far earlier, really, but other aspects of reality had taken attention and priority. Anyways, time to introduce myself a little while it is still the 25th in at least a timezone.

On the side I tend to enjoy sketching, whether to kill time, study something, to entertain ideas, etc. However, most of these sketches are done very hastily, with most being done under 30 or even 15 minutes at most…definitely not portfolio material, yeah? Additionally, I’ve been terrible with sharing these often outside a select few contacts, something which I hope to address over time.

There will be a lot of errors in post that will be noticed (whether by me or you all who may somehow stumble in here), but in my opinion, it’s still worthwhile to post and comment on them. We all start somewhere and must improve somehow, anyway.

Approximate times of creation will be given if I recall them, as I’m also going to be going through a few years’ worth of backlog whenever I do these. I’ll be going through these in chronological order.

Incomplete Yukari [Autumn 2011]
Graphite pencil (HB), fine line pen (various), coloured pencil.

I was definitely strongly into Touhou at the time. As for the image….I call it very rudimentary now amidst a lack of form and perspective understanding, and would grade it as little better than secondary school stuff…even though I was in university at the time of the sketch, and also drew during secondary school myself (and assuredly, the contents there are even more elementary). Okay colouring, though, given that caveat.


As Viewed on Youtube 9 Times! [Sep-Oct 2012]
Charcoal pencil (2B?).

Drawn whilst at a fair, as some performer had that caption on his promotional material. I don’t really think that view count is something worth promoting, though.

The contour isn’t too shabby at least.



Saxton Hale contour [~Oct 2012]
Charcoal pencil (4B?).

“The name’s Saxton Hale, AUSTRALIAN, CEO of Mann Co, and the man who’s about to burn this place to the ground!”

Sketched using a TF2 comic (I think it’s the one where he fights the yeti when disguised as a scientist) as a reference. It got the base forms somewhat right, but it definitely has the feeling of being too heavily traced, now that I look at it.


Moriya Jensen [Spring 2013]
Writing pen? (0.5mm), coloured pencil.

Very crude, yes, but the crossover was silly enough. I don’t recall if there was a major reason for making this.





Pyro & Spy [Aug 2013]
Mechanical pencil (0.5mm).
Spy, is your neck broken?

Pyro’s pose may be referring to some old meme, or it might not. I have no comments.




Aya of the Scoot Army [10 Sep 2013]
Digital (Sketchbook Pro 7).

Done in response to an art challenge on a Touhou forum, and an obvious crossover between TF2 (image referring to Rubberfruit’s “Heavy and Scout Think They Are Birds”, and the related Scout Army meme) and Touhou (the character Aya Syameimaru). Incredibly absurd concept, not too well-executed in retrospect (though credit to it for being something I committed more time to than normal), but it did the intended job.

I’ve been experimenting with digital sketching here and there over the years, but I think it works better for details and whatnot later on in a sketch’s process. For fundamentals and drafts, traditional materials are somehow more fun to work with.


“Would you care for some TEA?” [Spring 2014]
Graphite pencil (HB).

Amusing little caricature with a few odd forms noticed in retrospect. But it does show increasing Francophone influence in the style.




“Presidente, your shoulders are too broad for Juanito to approve!” [~Jul/Aug 2014]
Mechanical (0.5mm) or graphite pencil (HB), I forgot.

Can El Presidente pass an edict to fix his shoulder proportions? (inb4 this becomes a thing in the next Tropico game)



Wololo! [Spring 2015]
Graphite pencil (HB?).
Just an amusing Age of Empires monk.

With a redo of the pencil layer using my current or future understanding, I could probably give a so-so ink and colour treatment.

But for now, enjoy some dance music.



New Year’s Eve 2015 commute [Dec 2015]
Charcoal pencil (2B-4B?), graphite pencil (2H-2B), fine line pens (probably between 0.5mm and brush type).

Drawn onboard a commuter train whilst en route to a local party. Sloppy, yes, but I was drawing this out of boredom more than for serious practice.

…and now a number of things I follow or partake in are revealed. How…direct.


Colleagues [Feb 2016]
Graphite pencil (2H-2B), writing pen (0.5mm), watercolour pencils.

Most of the subjects here are based on former co-workers at various stints I had at the time. Did a poor inking job, though.


“Why are you in another style?” [Jun 2016]
Fine line pen (0.3 and 1mm), coloured pencil, graphite pencil (2H).

Sketched a few acquaintances following a meetup. The stylistic contrast between these segments is jarring, but several others and I found it amusing after the fact. Never got to finishing this one sadly.

The figure to the right was blurred out to respect their preferences.


My Moé Face…in Your Home [Aug 2016]
Fine line pen (<=1mm), coloured pencil.

The bottom character was drawn in response to positive news from a close friend (name has been censored out) – but it was never shared with them. Top muscular figure is completely unrelated.

I mistakenly drew Kagerou without referring to other works or official images, hence the wrong colour scheme. The caption may have been influenced by a work I saw in National Gallery of Canada.


Coffee Shop Cop [Feb/Mar 2017]
Graphite pencil (4H-4B?), coloured pencil.

The shading isn’t the best, and the materials themselves don’t synergise in this way…but I still find it appreciable for some reason.

There’s also some rudimentary one-point perspective practice.


Slav-squatting Serval [~4 July 2017]
Graphite pencil (2H-2B).

This sketch is probably the catalyst for me watching Kemono Friends a few weeks later. I also blame the show’s Steam store listing.

It had its endearing moments, to say the least, and the producers definitely gave it their efforts within their constraints. Now back to ignoring anime as usual. :U


Ink test [Sep 2017]
Water-soluble ink, sketching nibs, some student-grade oil pastels.

A quick and shoddy sketching test. Water-soluble ink is obviously not favourable in this context.


A lot of 3-5min D.Vas (and then some other things) [~11 Nov 2017]
Graphite pencil (2H-2B), 1mm felt pen.

Several draft ideas drawn as part of a postcard sketch. Iterative, impulsive, improvisational, and infallibly unpolished – and the final drawing I did put on the postcard was also done within 4 minutes (and also shoddy).


Grumpy Mall Santa Doodle [late Nov or early Dec 2017]
Probably a 0.5mm writing pen.

I had to put something seasonal here! The idea of a miserable holiday season is cliché, but given I was hopping by a mall at the time and saw the mall Santa doing what mall Santas tend to do, there wasn’t a reason to not lampoon the situation rapidly. Later drafts of the Santa figure and the child were done with sketch pen, but those never got past the drafting phase.

And that was that initial entry. It is pretty apparent that many areas could use significant work (e.g. hair, clothing physics, how to stylise and simplify aspects), but more importantly, committing to individual entries for longer would be a very useful improvement method that permits more experimentation at later stages (colouring, highlight/shadow emphasis, whatever). Seems like this is a consequence of treating sketching as a small-time hobby and not a half-serious discipline, backed by the relative absence of formal instruction.


But again, we all start somewhere and must improve somehow.

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