TUTORIAL - Traditional Pencil Shading Technique - by Icey (NUDITY)

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  02 February 2007
infamae - Thanks a lot! Glad to see romanians browsing this forum. Aa... o kestie mica - mi-ai zis machu crezand ca sunt Machu de pe VA?... Sau chiar stii ce varsta am? Cheers!

demented - Thanks d! You're on a great road yourself! I'm happy to be a moderator on SOFA... It is such a great place to learn a lot of things. Best wishes, bro!

aliasali - I'm sorry about this problem... I hope you've managed to see them. If not, just PM me and i'll send you the links to the images.

Blessing - Thank you! I will post more - just have to take the time to start a new tutorial... Glad to be of any help!

Ravmaster - I've used mechanical pencils - a 0.7 HB (or B… not quite sure) and a 0.5 2B - for blacker areas

neeko - Thanks a lot! I'm flattered to see you have your first post in my thread!

Hope i'll be back soon with another tutorial. Thank you all for taking the time to check my thread! Feel free to ask any questions!

CGTalk sketch thread HERE
  02 February 2007
Man that was an awesome insight on your process & workflow; Short and sweet yet chock full of information.
I will most definately show this to show my students next lecture!

Great addition to the community
Draw and draw more.... it can only help.


Dominance War 5 page
  02 February 2007
Beautiful pencil work! Thank you for sharing your techniques! Looking at your work makes me want to dig up dust off my pencils. I look forward to your next tutorial!
  02 February 2007
Wow. This is the kind of level I hope to get to someday. Thanks for putting up the walkthrough. I'll study it some more and see if I can apply it to my own stuff.
  02 February 2007

that's a really great tut!

I have one remark though and I think it's really important:

when drawing we are creating the illusion of placing a 3D subject on a 2D platform (paper, canvas, etc)...

Everything that is white (as in not shaded) can be concidered flat.
A really good drawing will have almost no or even no parts that are not shaded at all...

But maybe the lightest shades in your drawings you show here got lost in the scans (I know that is a problem I'm having myself), so forgive me for mentioning but I think everyone who reads the tutorial should realize this. It's something that is often not mentioned because it seems so obvious...
  03 March 2007
Blacklion - i'm honoured to hear that. I'll be back with something solid soon.

Aviva - thank you. You should do that! You should dust off your pencils because it's a wonderful feeling using them

Asatira - hope you'll find this stuff useful. If you work hard you'll get even better, trust me!

NR43 - first of all thank you for dropping by! You are giving me a hard time answering that! hmm... Well, you are quite right about that. But the human mind works pretty well with imagination. As you've said, everything is 2D, even the 3D models, even a photo. A white spot is as flat as a black spot, but artists have used this method of getting rid un unnecessary details and gaining impact by shading a lot of their shapes, just letting the brain figure the rest of it. And the truth is that the human mind does this thing pretty good!

Of course, everybody is free to do as they please. They don’t need to know that they have to shad everything so that the drawing won’t look flat. If they fallow this rule they’ll risk flatting the whole image, as I’ve done in the past. What they need is to find something that works for them. And I mean aesthetically first of all, so that they enjoy the result, understand the result and achieve what they had in mind.

I'll be back soon with a new step/by/step -tutorial stuff....
thank you all!
CGTalk sketch thread HERE
  06 June 2007
Man great tutorial! i'll have to practice this my self later!
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  09 September 2007
a siberian tiger sketch

Ok my first post and my first sketch on cgforum.
Reference image http://www.boneclones.com/BC-008.htm

click for particular

I don't manipulate in psd because this pc is old, but i must clean up because all my sketch are dirty :P i apologise for the scan and for my english.

scan in 600dpi.
All critics or comments are welcomes!

Last edited by EKOes : 09 September 2007 at 10:44 PM.
  09 September 2007
theblackmage - hello! Glad to heve inspired you. Drawing is a lot of fun! Use the advices, don't copy the drawing

EKOes - Hello!
Welcome to this forum I'm glad your first post is on this thread.
Your image is pretty good! Depth and sense of 3D space works just fine. More will come with practice.
What i can add to help is that the linework - the early sketch before shading - tells you a lot about the final drawing. You can try to vary the thickness of the line according to your light and shadow – thicker on the shaded areas – for example around eye sockets – and thinner on the lighted ones. Leaving this type of marks really helps you a lot in understanding the next step of the drawing better. You can try several line-drawings with no shading, see how it goes All that matters is that you’re having fun – and trust me… it gets better and better the further you advance with your skills
One more thing… Just let your hand slide on the paper… let the hand do what the brain wants, and do not interfere in your thoughts…. With your thoughts. Don’t rush out for erasers if you done something wrong, but double and triple the line… The human brain chooses the shapes he finds best suitable with his taste, and that’s a huge advantage! So if you’re trying to draw a circle for example, don’t just use a single line, because you won’t get something round on a first try, but draw several ones and let the brain choose the right pass.

Cheers! Hope this helps you a little!

CGTalk sketch thread HERE
  09 September 2007
okay thanks for the help, my first problem is the material, unfortunately in italia i discover only low-medium material, finder prismacolor ecc is very very hard or impossible.
In this picture i made an error, i use a charcoal, task instead that the just road is to use matite various 6b 4b 2b H 2h 4h 6h, or not?
An other thing that I ask myself, in before or the second phase when I must set up the shadows I do not know if to outline them or to vanish them.
Ok thanks for the answer!
  10 October 2007
EKOes - You can use whatever lead you want (even though i think 4H or 6H is a little radical). I usually use a HB or B, even 2B... The important thing - and i can tell you this from my own experience - don't change the type of lead you're using, or you'll mess up your work. About the shadow - in nature you'll find only vanishing shadows, but be very careful for the core-shadow that forms where the light hits (or passes) tangent to your shape. I don't know if you can get your hands on a Scott Robertson Gnomon DVD, but they are wonderful in explaining these kind of things! Hope i've helped....
CGTalk sketch thread HERE
  10 October 2007
A new tutorial with a new creepy subject. The basic idea is to complicate the subject and see what new problems appear on the way. This is made using as reference a picture I took in Paris, at the Musee de l’homme.

Now… because the drawing is much more complicated, we have to take extra care for proportions. I start with very light lines, finding the edge and figuring proportions using the near elements. Some prefer to build geometrically their forms, but I find it much harder… but if that helps do it! You can start from one point to the other, or you can walk with the whole body at once. Some (including myself) prefer to render something on the early drawing, especially when this is a complicated one, just to get a sense of direction to where your final drawing is going, others just render everything step by step. Do as it best serves you! No one has the right to tell you what’s best for you!

Try not to rush for an eraser (unless you have no choice), but double the lines. Trust your brain. He will choose the right contour on itself, so just go on with the flow. If the model has funny proportions, do them right or exaggerate them because otherwise they will seem like mistakes in your final drawing, and we don’t want that.

Remember : you have to paint an idea! Don’t blindly follow what’s in front of you!!! Otherwise the whole thing is useless.

CGTalk sketch thread HERE
  10 October 2007
At this step you are only guessing a level of 3Dimensionality that you had in mind the whole time. Choose your lights carefully and remember : “When light doesn’t enter, there is darkness.” – Harvey Dunn. Keep in mind all the useful things you’ve heard. I don’t have that big of a brain so I just save my favorite quotes and review them every time I need an advice.

“The human mind looks for recognizable forms to create order in the visual universe” (Michael Mentler – The Bone Doctor) Applying this in my case : I don’t need to draw things like the picture offers them to me. I need to understand the idea of bones, the idea of a skull or a ribcage and paint that. If you understand the thing you’re drawing you suddenly are free to create your own universe! That is outstanding!

CGTalk sketch thread HERE
  10 October 2007
For the next step you’ll be reshaping the perspective and the minor mistakes that you have in your drawing. At this point you should think about you are planning to emphasize on your subject. ALWAYS look for what’s best in your work and take that out as much as you can, leaving the rest in the lowest detail possible.

Note that I said eye... the next time you are talking to someone notice that you only focus on one eye at a time.... The biggest mistake by far that the artist makes when doing portraits is drawing both eyes will the same amount of detail. Always choose one eye as the focal point. Obviously this is the closest one to you in most cases and in a straight on view it is the left eye because we read the page from the lower left to the upper right.

This is what Mr. Mentler told me once. I’m applying this in my case by focusing on the first skull (witch is better!) and leave the rest fade out, only suggesting it.

The scanner hides a 1000 light lines that exist in the drawing. I’ll just leave them there and cover them with the hatching. They will later on give a nice vibration over my drawing.

The drawing is going the right way, but I don’t like how the lower half/body distorts the perspective. The one thing I can do right now trying to focus the attention on the upper skull and hope that the lower one will skip attention. But I really do need convincing power in my future steps.

“Horizontals and verticals tend to emphasize the eternal and the very static.” Iain McCaig said this if my notes are right. So what I’m doing is trying to vary my hatching so that it gives motion even to a static subject.

CGTalk sketch thread HERE
  10 October 2007
I’m almost done. But I think I’ve over rendered some areas in the wrong direction so now I have to cool them down a little (take a few steps back). A kneaded eraser is very good in these situations. Also this is where you can focus on the last minute details just to increase the excitement and spice up your character.

Just don’t rush things like I did here and don’t be discouraged if this isn’t the highlight of your life. Every study is a step forward and your achievement is in what you’ve learned, not in what you have by the end of the day.

CGTalk sketch thread HERE

Last edited by Icey : 10 October 2007 at 07:48 PM.
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