Tag: the virtual instructor

Bluejay from The Virtual Instructor

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Another tutorial from the virtual instructor complete. I loved how it turned out. This one is a Bluejay on Pastelmat paper using Pablo colored pencils and Panpastels for the background. I think the instructor used polychromos pencils, but the only oil-based pencils I have are the Caran D’Ache Pablos.

I was once told that referring to colored pencils as oil or wax is incorrect because they all have both oils and wax in them. Some have more at different points in processing. It helps me to think about colored pencils in terms of being hard or soft. With the pencils I have, Pablos are the hardest and the Derwent Drawing Pencils are the softest.

Before this project, I wasn’t fond of the Pablo pencils at all. They seemed light, and I didn’t like how they layered on paper. But once I used them on Pastelmat, I realized how much I like them. With Pastelmat, you can layer a lot, so with using a harder pencil you can layer light over dark. It’s a very painterly effect. I did use a few Luminance and Coloursoft, too, as I only have a set of 12 of the Pablos and needed an indigo blue and a dark gray.

This was the second tutorial the Three Little Birds series. I may tackle the third, but I need to buy some black paper. We’ll see.

Kingfisher from The Virtual Instructor

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I followed along to a tutorial by the virtual instructor, Matt Fussell, to draw this Kingfisher in colored pencil. I think it was the first time I totally focused on creating a finished-looking colored pencil portrait, and I’m really pleased with it.

As always, I struggle with perspective. My bird has a few issues, but I won’t dwell.

I used Strathmore 500 Bristol and a variety of colored pencils, mostly Caran d’ache and Derwent. He used Prismacolor, and the few I have are nearly gone. The course is called Three Little Birds, and there’s also a Bluejay and a hummingbird.

The Virtual Instructor

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For Christmas, I subscribed to art lessons at The Virtual Instructor for a year and have completed my first course, The Secrets to Drawing, and also followed along with a live, weekly lesson. So far, I, truly enjoy the classes. I’m gaining skills and filling in missing pieces of my understanding of art.

I bought four Stillman and Birn sketchbooks for my notes and projects while I follow along to the videos. The recent live lesson series focused on graphite and white charcoal on gray paper. I used my new Tombow graphite pencils, a Conte white pastels, and my Nova S&B sketchbook with gray paper to draw this rhinoceros.

This lesson was important because it taught me how to layer different grades of graphite, and using white for highlights was also interesting. (Graphite can go over charcoal, but charcoal cannot go over graphite.) I decided to use this process on a sketch of my own, so I used a photo of my horse and his friend playing in their pasture. I tried out a new paper, Stonehenge, which I love. The texture is like vellum, but it’s somehow crisper, if that makes any sense. This sheet was tinted a warm gray color, not as dark as Nova. I used my Tombow pencils and the Conte pastel. This was a super fun drawing, and I especially enjoyed drawing the texture and patterns of the horse blankets.