New sketch book

There is something magical and also something daunting about starting a new sketch book.

So I got myself a couple of A5 Winsor & Newton heavy weight wire-o sketch books.

50 sheets of glorious 170gsm white paper. Large enough to do a decent drawing or study, but small enough to be able to carry around.

What did I decide to do as my first drawing? Also what was the goal of the drawing? Not all drawings need a goal, but this time I felt I had a goal to achieve.

I’ll be honest, I’ve not put pencil to paper for quite some time. So I wanted a little project that I could just play with rendering texture, hair and eyes, with no pressure to create a masterpiece.

It had to be a horse subject. I have lots of my own reference material taken over the previous years (this study is based on a photo I took at the Westpoint Equestrian Fair 2019).

While it was a little daunting to put pencil to paper. I was surprised at how quickly my method of drawing and rendering detail came back to me, and quite relieved at the same time!

Some technical notes. I used the grid method to sketch out the horses head. I use this when doing commissions or when I need to get the proportions correct.

Pencils used were a .05mm mechanical pencil, with a HB lead. Also used a 2B and 4B Staedtler Mars technico clutch pencils.

Erasers used included Staedtler eraser and Tombow erasers, plus some old blue-tak for lifting off graphite.

There is no blending used in the study. I’m not keen on doing too much blending with graphite. I feel that with smoother papers, it tends to not work so well.

Plus blending makes the graphite more permanent by ingraining it in to the paper. This then makes it harder to erase or lift out. I’m always going back and forth adding darks or making areas lighter as the drawing progresses.

Anyway, enough of the chit chat, lets see what I drew as my first study in my new sketch book (Note photos taken on an iPhone6, so not the greatest). Drawing size is 10x15cm.

Work in progress picture of my irst study in my new sketch book.
Work in progress. You can see the mechanical pencil, eraser, Tombow eraser and blue-tak.
Work in progress photo of horse head study in my new sketch book.
Work in progress. You can see the texture and detail starting to appear,
Horse head drawing finished, dated and signed. First drawing in my new sketch book.

ArtOnTheHoof an update

ArtOnTheHoof an update, since Boxing Day 2020, I’ve been quite busy working on getting the site up and running.

It has taken a bit longer than I expected, plus I also hit a few technical issues, will chat about later.

However, what I have got up and running, I’m actually very pleased with.

The main galleries are up and running. Still have the wildlife and life drawing galleries to add.


So what issues have I hit?

Well the first was adding an SSL certificate. Now I hasten to add, this is a static site, no eCommerce etc., so in reality it does not require an SSL certificate.

However, Google likes sites to have one and therefore better for SEO etc. My website provider (LCN) used to supply a free one, but not any more.

So I had a play at installing some free ones, but they kept hitting technical issues. Guess LCN wants me to use their paid ones!

Therefore at the moment, no SSL certificate installed.

Second issue that I have, is that I have yet to find a WordPress plugin for my Etsy shop that I trust.

The plan for now, is to just link to items in my Etsy shop, such as the Prints section in my Etsy shop.

Currently have 3 Giclee prints on sale, it’s a start.

New toys

Got some new toys in the post today, a set of TomBow erasers (guess that can be classed as an ArtOnTheHoof update).

The set includes a oblong 2.5 x 5mm pen and refill, plus a round 2.3mm pen and eraser.

Saw these on some YouTube videos, and they looked really good. Basically they are great for erasing thing lines of graphite pencil. In the past I’ve cut up big erasers to try and get a thin eraser to do the same. The results were never very good!

So I’m really looking forward to giving these a go on my next drawing.

Tombow pen erasers. An ArtOnthehoof update image.
Tombow pen erasers.

Gallery Updates

Just a quick reminder that the following galleries are now up and running: