Danny

Today’s portrait is not a Sktchy face. This is Danny Gregory, founder of Sketchbook Skool and all round art guru who is celebrating his birthday today. I owe Danny a lot. He is the person who got me drawing for the first time since childhood when I was in the depths of major depressive illness after a serious breakdown some years ago. It’s no exaggeration to say that drawing, and by extension Danny, was one of the things that helped to save my life.

Since that time chronic mental and physical illness has become a part of my life and daily drawing is part of my toolkit for maintaining my wellbeing. Sketchbook Skool and Sktchy, and the online communities that surround these, have become an integral part of my life and crucial to my mental and physical health. I’m hugely grateful to the people who make up these communities for their ongoing friendship and support and to Danny, Koosje Koene and Jordan Melnick for their foresight and hard work in creating and sustaining them.

Those of you who follow this blog regularly will know that a few months ago I became a teacher for Sketchbook Skool. I can’t tell you how exciting it is for me to go from student to teacher. The very least I can do is draw Danny on his birthday and wish him a very happy birthday!

Faeze

This was so much fun to draw! I want to focus on drawing hands in a future Spark class so I was looking at inspiration photos with hands. This one caught my eye – too hard for a first class on drawing hands but fun for me to draw. The muse is Faeze from the Museum by Sktchy app.

Erika

We practiced drawing noses in my Drawing Faces class for Sketchbook Skool’s Spark programme this week. I love drawing noses and hate drawing mouths (because I find them so difficult to get right) so drawing Erika’s nose and mouth here was both a joy and a struggle! We focused on finding the roundness in these features to help us draw them well and it was a lot of fun.

I usually play around with the drawings a little after class, adding finishing touches when I have more time. But this week I have builders putting in new windows and I had to pack all my art materials away straight after my class, so I had to finish my drawing entirely in Procreate. So all the finishing touches are added with digital Copic and coloured pencil brushes.

Angie

This is Angie from the Museum by Sktchy app. I’m absolutely in love with the True Grit Chromagraph brushes I bought recently – True Grit brushes aren’t the cheapest Procreate brushes on the market but they’re worth every penny. They’re the best quality of any I’ve tried and I get excited every time they bring out a new set!

If you’re interested in having a look at their brushes you can check them out here – and this post isn’t sponsored by them in any way, I just love their brushes.

Murphy

I have two things to tell you about this portrait. The first is that I hate drawing someone if I don’t know their name. As you will know if you’re a regular follower of this blog, most of my photo inspiration comes from the Museum by Sktchy app. Most of the images posted on there to be drawn are selfies but people do also post images of family members or friends, and often theses images don’t have names. If I can’t name the person I won’t generally draw them. This guy wasn’t named but I really wanted to draw him – it’s such a great inspiration photo – and the last name of the person who posted the photo is Murphy so I decided to steal her last name and use it for his name. Sometimes, if there’s an image I really want to use, I can create a workaround to one of my own rules 😂

The second thing I want to say is that this is the second portrait I’ve drawn of Murphy this week. I drew the first one in my sketchbook and painted it in watercolour and it is truly, embarrassingly awful. The worst portrait I’ve drawn in years. I did think about working on it in Procreate to try to improve it but once I’d uploaded it and had a look I decided that it wasn’t worth rescuing and I should start again. So I did. And this is an infinitely better portrait. Sometimes it’s better to simply start over.

Chewie

I always try to draw a Star Wars themed portrait for May 4th, which is Star Wars Day. Today I’ve taken my inspiration from a mini Chewbacca – I loved this little guy’s Chewie costume in a photo posted by Amber on the Museum by Sktchy app. He looked so excited to be dressed up in it.

Hope you like the portrait and have a happy Star Wars day. May the Fourth be with you!