Unique Sketches Pencil Sketch


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Unique Sketches Pencil Sketch

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Unique Sketches Pencil Sketch.


Steven E Hughes is an associate professor of illustration at Northern Michigan University. His paintings and illustrations have been featured in many exhibitions and publications, including The New York Times. 

This sketch is a great example of wonderfully weird pencil art 

Marcu created this study of a gorilla as his entry for The National Open Art Competition UK. “I’m pleased with the piece as it personally represents a big leap in scale, detail and patience,” he says. “It is roughly twice the size of my previous work and I learnt a lot working on this beast.”

“My focus is on the study of art and my personal development in all its branches, and I am obsessed with excellence in the creation of any product.”

This mesmerising pencil drawing is the work of veteran illustrator and fine artist James Martin. Martin currently teaches illustration at Ringling College of Art and Design in Florida, and in the past has worked as a background artist for Walt Disney Studios and texture and matte painter for DreamWorks Animation.

German artist Armin Mersmann is the man behind this chilly woodland scene. Although he also works with oils, Mersmann is best known for his intense naturalistic graphite drawings. His work has been featured in more than 150 exhibitions and has won him over 30 awards.

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This mindblowingly realistic image of a cat was created by traditional artist Paul Lung. The Hong Kong-based creative’s portfolio on Deviant Art is astonishing, featuring realistic portraits of both humans and animals. 

This delicate pencil drawing is the work of Dave Brasgalla, an illustrator, graphic designer and concept artist based in Sweden. Brasgalla enjoys using traditional media for his personal projects, and finds coloured pencils a particularly versatile and satisfying medium. For this drawing Brasgalla layered up his pencil marks, leaving only a few areas of paper uncoloured. 

“The drawing process immersed me for hundreds of hours, interpreting and translating what I saw and felt from hundreds of reference photos, collected branches, twigs, and revisits to the site.”

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Armin Mersmann’s work has been featured in exhibitions all over the world

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The time in which each takes depends on his subject matter, with this particular A2 pencil drawing taking Lung approximately 60 hours to complete.

“Although the drawings and paintings I make are based upon a series of photographs and video stills, I use softer and more complex focuses on the subject so that the resulting art presents it as a living, tangible being,” he explains. 

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In this life drawing, Martin wanted to play around with the edges of the figure. “Edge control is the most valuable artistic tool to control the viewer’s eye,” he explained in an interview for ImagineFX magazine. “Hard edges draw attention, while soft or lost edges give the eye a place to rest.”

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The research process for this mouthwatering still life piece began with a visit to one of the best doughnut shops in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan: Huron Bakery. “Looking at the contrasts between props guides the still life setup for me. If something is dark, put it against something light, and vice versa. Play pattern against solid areas and look for repetitions to move the eye across the composition.” 

Sketching in graphite is a great way to kick off or restart your creative drive. Here we’ve sourced a selection of inspiring pencil drawings that demonstrate the wonderful (and sometimes wacky) art you can produce with a pencil. These pencil drawings span from photorealism to completely abstract. If you’re so inspired you want to immediately get some new materials, then don’t miss our post on the best pencils. 

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Melanie Phillips has been a professional pet portrait artist since 1997. She works from her garden studio in Wales, which she shares with her artist husband Nicholas and Tibetan terrier Lily.

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“These objects and scenes in my drawings are thus meticulously detailed to create the illusion of a new reality not seen in the original photo.”

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We just couldn’t pick a favourite from Mike Lee’s superb pencil drawing collection Repose, so we chose two. Lee uses only simple lines and shapes, reducing his subjects to their most basic forms. He has an extensive portfolio of pencil artwork, and you can discover more here. 

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Gillian Lambert’s Self Deception series is stunning, and we struggled to chose just one illustration to feature. In the end we went for Hands because we love the simultaneous indifference and exasperation of the subject’s face as it is moulded by the hands.To see the full series, and Lambert’s other work, visit her website.  

Arinze Stanley has been honing his skills since the age of six

Jono Dry usually works in graphite on large paper or board surfaces

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Giacomo Burattini believes his work highlights the beauty of imperfection

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James Martin played around with lost and found edges in this life drawing

Many of Colombian artist Juan Osorno’s surreal pencil studies depict voided human faces with unusual objects, landscapes or natural phenomena in the place of facial features. You can view the full collection of these abstract sketches on Osorno’s Behance page. 

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This mouthwatering still life was created by Steven E Hughes

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You’d be forgiven for thinking that the images in this article are photographs. But we assure you, they’re not. Each and every one is hand-drawn pencil art – many of them in beautiful black and white.

Here, some seriously talented illustrators have pulled out their best pencils and drawing techniques to create some truly exceptional pencil art. Featuring celebrity portraits, animals, natural scenes, everyday objects and famous landmarks, there’s something to inspire you in each entry here. Enjoy…

“I believe reality is a beauty in itself so I don’t need to find ways to hide the imperfections of human nature so my work shows the perfection of the imperfections of life.”

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Entitled Sensazioni (sensations, in English) this mind-blowing pencil drawing was created by artist Diego Fazio. Over a period of roughly 200 hours, Fazio drew this intricate piece, which we still – no matter how long we look at it – cannot believe is a drawing. Simply amazing.

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Her top tip for creating realistic pencil drawings? “Don’t forget you build up your layers slowly. Starting with a 4B for instance, add each layer gradually instead of using a hard pencil pressure from the outset,” she says. “You’ll find that your drawings have much more depth to them.”

French illustrator Cécile Metzger’s quirky self-portrait is fascinating for its use of colour. The hint of red pattern on the cup immediately attracts the eye, and together with the contrasting blue cup and orange top – opposite colours on the colour wheel – keeps focus away from the girl herself. To see more, check out Metzger’s Tumblr.  

Composed using soft and therefore much darker graphite, this sketch by Charlie Mackesy shows how effective blurring can be through two indistinct figures. Mackesy is a master of painting and sculpture, as well as drawing, and you can browse his portfolio here.  

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When we first saw the work of Scottish artist Paul Cadden, it took a while for us to realise that they were in fact pencil drawings – the hyperrealist artist used just graphite and chalk to create these stunning images.

Click the icon in the top-right of each image to enlarge it.

Self-taught South African artist Jono Dry has quickly earned a name for himself with his unique style of drawing that blends photorealism and surrealism on a massive scale. His work has the look of vintage photography, but usually with an unsettling or incongruous twist; if you like the look of it, he has prints available to buy through his Etsy shop.

Her incredible pencil drawings are included in collections all over the world, and she has worked with clients including Nike, GQ, M&C Saatchi, The Economist and The New York Times.

It’s almost impossible to believe this incredible image is a pencil drawing

“Hyperrealism in my work displays the beauty of the imperfections perfectly, opening a door within the subject that is not normally depicted in real life,” says Italian artist Giacomo Burattini, who drew this unusual portrait.

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In this wonderfully atmospheric drawing, artist Ian Murphy uses graphite pencil to explore how light disperses around Venice’s confined waterways. Murphy works mostly in pencil and oil paint, and focuses particularly on architecture, emphasising the layers and textures of the buildings he recreates. To see more of his sketches and his paintings, visit his website.  

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Nigerian artist Arinze Stanley has had a long time to practise his stunning pencil art; he’s been at it since the age of six. Growing up around his family’s paper business inspired his love of drawing, and he expresses himself through what he calls his three P’s: Patience, Practice and Persistence. “Most times it’s almost like I lose control of my pencils and like energy transfer, the art flows through me from my pencil to the paper,” he says.

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She’s now moving in more experimental and abstract directions in her work, including very large-scale drawing projects based around the human figure.

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Cath Riley’s pencil drawings are amazing to look at, but she regards her hyperreal work as just a stage in her ongoing evolutionary process of exploration and development. 

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This striking portrait was drawn by artist Jake Spicer, a passionate advocate of drawing as a tool for communication and inquiry. This particular portrait was created over two hours, using a combination of photographs of the model, Gigi, and sketches done during an hour-long portrait sitting. 

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This incredible portrait of Hollywood actress Anne Hathaway is the work of Franco Clun, a self-taught artist from Italy, who has picked up everything he knows about drawing from reading manuals and plenty of practice.

Remrov is a self-taught artist who creates incredibly realistic pencil drawings, often of animals (although he will draw anything he finds interesting). He has autism, which for him means he sees the whole world in tiny little details. This drawing is of Pilaf, a lovebird Remrov has owned for 17 years. “Pilaf helps me a lot with the challenges I face as an autistic person,” he says. 

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Burattini found an audience by sharing his pencil drawings on Tumblr, Facebook and Instagram, where he regularly shares his works in progress. This drawing was created using black coloured pencils, graphite pencils and charcoal.

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“The best portrait drawings aren’t just pictures of faces, but records of a long moment shared between artist and sitter,” he explains. “Whether you are able to ask friends or family to sit for a portrait, or can attend a drawing class with a model, it is always an engaging and exciting experience to draw another person from life.”

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Jake Spicer thinks the best portraits are created when you can meet and sketch the model in person

Stefan Marcu pushes himself to create his best work possible

This pencil drawing was a commissioned portrait of a dog called Poppy. “It’s my job to not only create a drawing that’s pleasing to the eye, but one that captures Poppy and not just any dog,” explains Phillips. 

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Dave Brasgalla layered up his pencil marks to create this delicate iris

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Hughes also advises photographing your still life from several angles before you start work. “You never know when a hungry kid will run into your studio and grab that carefully positioned doughnut!” he smiles. 

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“I love botanical and floral subjects, and the patterns that are present in the petals of the Siberian iris quickly caught my eye,” he says. “I couldn’t resist buying a bunch of them, with the aim of working on a drawing at home.” 

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This series by Cath Riley features hyperrealistic pencil drawings of flesh

“From the age of five, I started drawing, and over time I added more skills, such as drawing, painting, sculpture, all types of graphic design, caricature and digital photography,” explains Stefan Marcu, the artist behind this stunningly realistic gorilla portrait.

Is it a bird? Is it an eye? Or could it even be a pencil? This weirdly wonderful sketch was created by Danish illustrator Fotini Tikkou, whose Instagram is full of bright and bold illustrations, favouring coloured pencils and gouache. We love the contrast between the foreground image, drawn in solid lines, and the wavy lines of the now-empty cage. 

This sketch of a commuter on a train uses watercolour pencil, which we think conveys the artist/commuter relationship brilliantly. It provides enough detail to give the subject an individual face, but detail is deliberately missing. Artist Josu Maroto works in a variety of mediums, and you can explore more of his work here. 

“The very act of drawing every branch, twig, highlight and shadow, rendering textures from the extreme winter skins to the silkiness of new-fallen snow, transforms the scene into an intimate journey. This undertaking is considerably different than merely taking a photo or simply being there,” he explains on his site.

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Less weird but no less wonderful, our next choice is Belgian artist Els Dufourmount’s untitled sketch of a girl. Combining a close-up focus and bold shading, Dufourmount uses light and dark to add life to the girl’s face. 



Touch up your skills with these kinds of pencil drawing techniques, with regard to both graphite and female pencils. These pencil attracting techniques from top musicians will assist you to take your pulling skills one stage more , whether you`re using graphite pencil or coloured pencils. For many artists, pad drawing is the ability that introduced them to be able to the art world, and even even if you`ve advanced to a different channel , understanding how to pull with a pencil can easily help you transform your abilities elsewhere. These pencil sketching techniques cover from the particular basics of mark-making to be able to advanced processes to drive you out of your current comfort zone. We`ll also provide advice on the resources and materials you want to know, such because blending stumps, paper choices , and different erasers. In case you`re a total starter , or just want to be able to upgrade your kit, get a look at each of our guide to the most effective pencils.

Master mixing , Healy has a particular process for blending your ex coloured pencil work. The girl depends on an description , to check the kind is proper before doing to coloured pencil (it`s much harder to get rid of coloured-in areas than the outline). It also will help her plan where typically the highlights and shadows can fall. She then creates up colour using simple layers. I love to be able to start out with smooth gentle layers to get a better concept of lights placement, shadows as well as the shade palette, she says. Following each layer she mixes gently using the blending together stump. Once she provides reached a stage she`s happy with, she steps on to the ultimate step: adding an put together . For this final part , Healy uses coloured pencils alone, and does certainly not blend with a stump.

Beyond that will , different artists have diverse approaches to lines instructions you need to locate the style that`s best for you. I favor to use an unique outline in my art work , many people using thin traces or bold outlines, ` says Healy. It could help pinpoint the audience`s eye to a particular area. Additionally, it gives the stylised look, if that will is what you happen to be hoping to achieve. Chiu, however, prefers a distinct approach. I try to be able to avoid outlining my sketches because this tends to be able to make things look smooth and deadens the THREE DIMENSIONAL effect. Breaks and places in my lines present form in the lighting and shadows.

Safeguard your paper, This is usually a valuable pencil pulling technique for beginners: place a piece of report under me to steer clear of smudging your drawing although you`re working. It appears evident , but it can become the downfall of some sort of great piece of function ! Healy also prefers in order to mount her paper in a board, attaching that using a layer involving matte medium. This assists keep things neat, and even provides a good surface to be able to work.

Utilize the right eraser, There happen to be a few various kinds of eraser, and each is appropriate to various things. You`ll definitely need a kneaded eraser. This has some sort of putty-like consistency (it`s oftentimes known as putty eraser), and you knead that before and after work with . A kneaded eraser is definitely best for lightly finding up the coloured pen binding off the document . This works wonders whenever correcting mistakes, or in case you`re deliberately lifting color from an area including the eyes, says Healy. A new gum eraser has some sort of more solid consistency, plus is better if you`re trying to fully get rid of a coloured-in area. Des Reuden continues: I firmly believe in letting pure intuition take over in typically the creation process so My partner and i work with the underdrawing more as a guide . This implies the final outcome varies.

Unify your colors , Having an uniform method to colour can help deliver cohesiveness to your do the job . It`s a good concept to make sure that will your artwork has unifying colours, says Healy. `This consists of a certain colour palette, mood plus a way of spreading these kinds of throughout the entire art part . In addition, she recommends creating a harmonious bottom by using tinted document or adding a backdrop wash of colour (in paint). This will present through whatever you take a nap on top of this , thus giving it the appearance of cohesion. Whenever I use coloured pencils, I`m fond of applying tinted paper produced by simply Kraft.

Use a stump intended for soft blending, How an individual blend your work can easily have a big influence on the final result. Intended for a soft blended impact , try a blending stump. After each light coating , I very gently mix the coloured pencils using the stump, says US-based artist Jennifer Healy. Avoid push too hard or even the colour will keep , making it tougher to be able to softly blend. I do it again this process as usually when i need. After several layers it produces a new very soft and fragile look. This technique takes a little trial and problem , though. Healy warns of which if you blend as well softly, the stump could pick up colour of which you`ve already layered around the paper.

Know if you should quit , The majority of designers tend to tinker with their own work - even following they`ve signed their label . I can always locate something to change in the event that I look hard good enough , so it can end up being difficult to share when a new piece is truly completed , says Chiu. However, be skeptical of overworking your part . `Eventually, I make some sort of conscious decision to place my drawing away plus start something new, this individual continues. `That`s when I actually consider my drawing carried out

Check and recheck, Before you begin more powerful lines and detail function , it`s essential to be sure to have the correct contact form down. Chiu`s advice is definitely to check and verify again. Need to nail lower my drawing`s underpinnings prior to I can add specifics . I really avoid questioning on the details: I desire to make sure almost everything is symmetrical and appear right before writing better and harder lines. This individual also suggests taking a look at the work in a hand mirror or through a digital camera . Considering different vantage details is a great solution to highlight if anything is usually crooked. I constantly question myself, does this think right? If anything looks off - even when I can`t immediately place my finger about what that is #NAME? have confidence in my gut and troubleshoot my drawing before moving forward

Rescue their life from your comfort zone, Although these pencil drawing approaches should help you recognize the essentials in the method , sometimes you need to be able to toss the rules out and about of the window and locate what works for a person . There`s nothing wrong using stepping outside of typically the box if it signifies achieving the effect an individual want, says Healy. Learning from mistakes will occur when a person step outside of of which box. But don`t become intimidated! The process will be entirely fun.

Begin lightly and build coming from there, While i start pulling , I plan and discover using loose lines, and even avoid committing too soon along with hard, dark lines, states Chiu. As I improve my lines will alter , so checking and rechecking my work is essential . I darken my traces and add details in the end. I do not concentrate on one area with regard to too long to avoid overdrawing. Begin with an underdrawing, Artist Tim von Reuden likes to start together with a digital underdrawing of which he prints at 1 per cent Opacity. Preceding , you can view the underdrawing regarding his sketch of some sort of woman holding a personnel . He explains, I enjoy to keep it gentle so that it provides for a foundation rather than some sort of final image.

Draw on your individual experiences, Dip into your own experiences to add a particular layer of authenticity for your piece, suggests Healy. What this means is using something like some sort of memory, feeling or smell when building your work. Intended for example, the special experience you experienced when seated down with a good friend at the coffee shop, or even a memory of the child years experience. You can become abstract or use hyperrealism. What you may choose makes the particular piece unique to a person . I`ve found that individuals resonate with these items the most.

Try combining pencils along with watercolour, While pencils upon their own may be used to produce a wealth of various effects, it can get interesting to combine associated with other media. For instance , in her work, Healy loves to combine watercolour and even coloured pencils. It`s crucial to get started with watercolour and even then layer coloured pencils on top, she clarifies , because pencils can generate a waxy surface of which repels liquid, and helps prevent the watercolour from placing into the paper. This specific is a fun approach to try out, the girl says. Both mediums include unique qualities and construction . Combining the two factors provides an impressive medium all regarding its own.

Categorise the fabric, Von Reuden describes how one can add value in addition to shading to create more layers of depth and even weight. He admits that will , when drawing and re-creating fabric, the types regarding wrinkles created can just about all be placed under a few separate categories: hanging/relaxed, stretched/tension, and scrunched/compressed. Hanging cloth tends to be unfastened and have a streaming appearance. Stretched fabric produces long lines, usually together with a point of assistance . Compressed fabrics bunch in to each other, creating scrunched-looking areas.

Create textile , Fabric can range coming from sleek and shiny to be able to matte and dull. Just how you shade it can help sell the concept of the material you`re striving to depict. In this drawing , von Reuden is attempting in order to capture the golden folds up of material found within the original image. He or she began by outlining the particular shapes and blocking away aspects of shadow.

Short on time? That above, from character artist Bobby Chiu, runs by means of some pencil drawing linked with action. For extra in-depth suggestions about composition in order to how to capture lighting and shadow, look into our own art techniques article. Or perhaps , for inspiration, check out this specific roundup of unbelievably practical pencil drawings.

Attempt different approaches to traces , Another drawing technique worries line weight. As nicely as demarcating different items , lines can help stress shadows. Thicker lines could fade and disappear to the shadows, which can support convey the 3D kind , explains Chiu.

Use contrasting concepts, 1 drawing technique Healy makes use of in her work is definitely to use contrasting principles within a piece associated with work, for instance, juxtaposing beauty and ugliness. I am going to use the beauty involving colours, flowers, the real softness of skin or tresses , plus the female form. I will also tend to make use of something option opposite in order to all of that, like bones, insects, sharp tooth , or anything that might provide discomfort to the particular viewer, she elaborates. `Somehow this provides an appealing idea to a piece. Specially when the `ugly` parts substantially harder to spot in first. To me this can be a very stark representation regarding what life is such as

Make use of the correct grip, The first stage is always to master how to be able to hold a pencil effectively . Chiu recommends holding typically the pencil just like you could some sort of piece of charcoal, in addition to taking advantage of typically the side of the prospect to draw, rather compared to the point. This assists maintain your pencil sharper with regard to longer. When covering significant areas, I shade along with my pencil perpendicular in order to the line I`m attracting to get wide, smooth lines, he adds. With regard to details, I hold my personal pencil parallel to my personal lines to get sharpened , narrow marks. The sole time I use the particular thing is when I`m working on intricate information

Mix up covering techniques, There are tons of different pencil sketching techniques relating to shade providing . Chiu uses two primary approaches. The first will be with all the traces going in the identical direction. `This makes my personal shading appear more natural, and helps my specifics pop out from typically the lines I`m using regarding shading, he explains. Typically the second method involves doing work in patches of covering , to help define form . Patches of lines sidestep the form, which assist keep things in viewpoint , he says. It is in addition great for backgrounds plus creating texture.

Find the right papers texture, The surface structure you`re working on will certainly make a big distinction towards the effects you may create. It is referred in order to as the grain or perhaps `tooth` of the papers . A rough tooth is definitely more visible, and the particular ridges will grip typically the colour from your pencils. Which has a smooth tooth, the particular ridges are very great , and there`s less grasp . Healy finds this sort of paper provides the easier surface for mixing coloured pencils, although the lady warns that it`s likewise easy to perform the color off the surface.


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