Man at Arms pencil study

Pencil study of a medieval 'man at arms' by Stuart Fowle

This Man at Arms pencil study is a natural progression from the previous Viking/Saxon studies that I have been doing over the last year.

I seem to be drawn (no pun intended), to drawing these studies and not any animals at the moment. However, the techniques I’m using are very useful no matter what the subject is.

Moving on from the ‘Dark Ages’ I’ve found an image of what looks tom me to be a ‘Man at Arms’ from the Medieval period. I came across the image on Pinterest, but the link to the original is via Flickr

The different textures, metal, cloth, leather, skin and hair are what caught my attention. I enjoy the challenge of trying to capture them. So while that type of challenge currently appeals to me, I’m riding that wave, as they say.

On my last pencil study (Another Viking pencil study) I used 0.5mm mechanical pencils. I wasn’t too happy with using them. So for this drawing I went back to my favourite Steadtler Mars Technico clutch pencils.

I just find using the clutch pencils so very natural. The weight is consistent and so is the length of the pencil. So you can always be confident that you don’t have to keep adjusting your hold on the pencil.

With this drawing, I stayed away from using any blending stumps. However I did make good use of a Winsor & Newton Putty rubber for lifting the graphite to help lighten areas. Plus, by dabbing the putty rubber on the skin areas, it gave a more natural skin texture than using a blending stump.

Is the drawing perfect, far from it! I still need to learn how to get eyes to look like they belong together!! But overall, I’m quite pleased how he came out.


Stuart Fowle is a participant in the Amazon EU Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.co.uk.

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