Actors can be mercurial, artists can change the way they want to see things just as quickly. In the span of an evening last February I tried out three ways to look at actor Michael Sheen on paper. (When I drew these sketches I was watching an episode of “Prodigal Son,” which I enjoyed and was sad to see canceled.)
Sheen plays a surgeon who is brilliant, but also a serial killer. And his son Malcolm Bright, played by Tom Payne (yes, Jesus/Paul from “The Walking Dead”) is a consultant for a local police department. Malcolm has a rather “fraught” relationship with his father. Lou Diamond Phillips plays the police captain that Malcolm works for. (LDP does a fantastic job in this role.)
I started with brush pen and ink wash. I did a brush pen sketch to explore a different angle. (He has an interesting nose.)
And then I ended up drawing a sketch where I went so fussy with my lines that I went way past any nod to likeness and just let myself enjoy the fussiness of building line after line after line. (See the final post image.)
I think it’s healthy do to this. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
This week why don’t you spend an evening sketching something 3 different ways? Don’t bother to watch TV. Get out your favorite still-life subjects (for me that means my Dinosaurs, but flowers, vegetables, office supplies—you can use anything that appeals to you).
It’s more fun if you do a still live set up because you can move your position all around to get a different view. Use two types of pen and then do a sketch with a color pencil. Do one of your sketches as pen (or color pencil) and watercolor. Mix it up anyway you want.