This is Neshama from the Museum by Sktchy app. I decided to stop drawing her T this point because I really like the expression I’ve caught on her face and I have a tendency to overwork ballpoint pen drawings. I didn’t want to overwork this one.


It’s taken me more than a week to finish this portrait. I got stuck on the hair for some reason and now it feels either over or under done. I suppose I mean that I think I should have either left it alone sooner or I think I need to work on it more, but I don’t have the time or motivation so I’m leaving it here and moving on.

The face is the Alina from Museum by Sktchy, who I’ve drawn before, and I used my usual Bic 4 colour ballpoint pens.


As time passes ballpoint pens are increasingly becoming my comfort zone but, if you’ve been following this blog for any length of time, you’ll have noticed that I’m gradually adopting a “less is more” approach. I like my ballpoint pen portraits best when they are simple and not too heavily worked.

I always work my first layer in blue and the hardest decision is always whether to add any more colour once I’ve done that initial blue layer. I loved how this looked with just a single layer of blue and I honestly can’t say if it’s better or worse with more colour added but I’m pretty happy with how it’s turned out.

I used 3 different Bic 4 colour ballpoint pens in a Life Noble Note Plain notebook and the muse is Vazha from the Museum by Sktchy app.


There’s no question that drawing lines with a ballpoint pen is the most therapeutic kind of drawing for me. It’s just so simple and straightforward and I’m simply building up the image layer by layer with each colour. I’m still on sick leave at the moment and right now this is the kind of drawing that I find the most soothing.

The model is Kate from the Museum by Sktchy app and I used Bic 4 colour ballpoint pens in a Life Noble Note Plain Notebook.


I’ve gone back to Bics for my first portrait of 2022. This is Mahdiar from the Museum by Sktchy app (of course) drawn with my usual Bic 4-colour biros in a Life Noble Note Plain sketchbook. I’ve made him look a bit moodier than he is in the inspiration photo – he’s looking much happier in that but I lost his smile along the way.

I’d like to wish all my followers a very happy new year. I hope that 2022 brings you everything you would wish for yourself and your family, and I seriously hope it sees the beginning of the end of the Covid pandemic for all of us.


My drawing mojo is so up and down at the moment for a whole host of reasons and most days I’m having to push really hard to get myself to sit down and do any drawing at all and, especially, to stick with it when it’s not going so well. This ballpoint pen drawing of Avonlea is a good example.

I am really fighting with myself when it comes to drawing hair – anyone who knows me well will knows that this is a familiar battleground. I really struggled in the past when I only drew with Copic markers working out how to draw hair. Eventually I found a way that worked well for me with markers but I still haven’t got there with ballpoint pens and watercolour. And so when I’m struggling I just want to give up.

I know, from past experience, that the struggle is usually a good sign. It generally means I’m getting close to a breakthrough, to making some real progress. But this time around it feels like I’ve been stuck in this hole for a long, long time and I’m getting weary of it so I’m hoping that breakthrough comes soon.


Today is Day 1 of Inktober 2021 when artists worldwide draw in ink for the entire month. Today’s Inktober prompt is Crystal and I chose to draw Sktchy muse Weston WIlliams with a Bic 4 colour pen.


I’m still struggling to draw at my desk due to lower back problems but it’s improving slowly with treatment. I’m managing a little bit of drawing most days so here’s a portrait of Vazha from the Museum by Sktchy app drawn with Bic 4-colour ballpoint pens.


I’ve lost my pencil case with my drawing ballpoint pens in it. This is a major disaster. It’s taken me several days to replace my 4 colour Bics (especially the one with turquoise & light green) and I can’t find another golden yellow ballpoint anywhere. Paperchase don’t make the one I had any more. Aargh! I don’t know what happened to my pencil case but very afraid someone (not saying who) accidentally knocked it into a bin bag when emptying the rubbish bin under my desk… So making do while I rebuild my ballpoint pen collection. Moral of the story is to treasure your precious drawing supplies and guard the hard to replace ones jealously.

This is J from the Museum by Sktchy app, drawn with the three Bic 4 colour ballpoint pens I’ve replaced.