A Child’s Portrait Sketched with Pastel Pencils

,
Young child sketched using charcoal pencil

I drew this young girl’s portrait (in value only) using CarbOthello Pastel Pencils on toned paper.

This portrait was for a grad school illustration assignment and drawn from a photo reference.

It’s always a challenge to capture the likeness of a person, no matter their age.

For this assignment, the goal was to better understand that a child’s head and facial proportions differ significantly from that of an adult’s.

Mayra Ruiz-McPherson

Let's stay in touch!

Sign up to receive occasional insights, tips, and bonus content! Plus subscribers receive a link to my FREE ILLUSTRATION STARTER GUIDE.

I won't spam you. And you can unsubscribe anytime. Powered by ConvertKit

Pastel Pencil Illustration of Sleeping Passenger On Board United Airlines Flight Leaving Managua for USA

,
Illustration of sleeping passenger on United Airlines flight from Nicaragua to Houston, Texas

I have safely left Nicaragua — a country now in full-blown revolution mode — thankfully in one piece.

Washington Dulles bound

As I await my flight from Houston, Texas back home to Washington, DC, I feel so happy to have brought my sketchbook and pastel pencils along my travels.

Not only was the entirety of my Managua stay (and all my plans while there) ruined by the inundating waves of political upheaval, but I’m a nervous traveler in general and so having the ability to draw while on board my flight was a delightful distraction.

Pastel pencil illustration of sleeping passenger

During my outbound Managua flight, I was kind of a nervous wreck from this having happened right before boarding.

Then once in flight, we began to experience major turbulence along the way, which made my anxiety much, much worse.

Then I looked up and saw this man slumbering deeply as the plane shifted abruptly to the left and then to the right by winds. I envied his peaceful state. No matter how aggressively the plane’s flight was impacted by turbulence, this man never once awakened.

I don’t know what prompted me to bust out my sketchbook to draw the sleeping man;  I just felt incredibly compelled to do so.

Perhaps I had hoped that, in recording his soft peace by way of illustration, I may benefit vicariously from his profound sense of calmness.

I quickly grabbed my Stabilo CarbOthello Pastel Pencils and went to work, using a limited palette of blues to help visually emphasize the man’s silence, his slumber, and dreamy state.

Drawing people from life is challenging for me.

Because folks tend move around and then I lose my place or drawing groove.

Also because I feel uncomfortable to constantly stare up at someone while I’m drawing them from life — and they don’t know that I’m drawing them so when they see me staring at them over and over, I fear they might think I’m some kind of crazed stalker 🙂

Despite said challenges, I find I enjoy drawing people from life.

And the fact that this man was sleeping so profoundly without movement made drawing him that much more pleasurable.

Enjoy!

Until next time,

Mayra Ruiz-McPherson

 

 

 

Let's stay in touch!

Sign up to receive occasional insights, tips, and bonus content! Plus subscribers receive a link to my FREE ILLUSTRATION STARTER GUIDE.

I won't spam you. And you can unsubscribe anytime. Powered by ConvertKit

Practicing Ellipses with Oil Paints

,
Practicing ellipses with oil paints

I really want to thank master oil painter Elizabeth Floyd for being a fantastic and inspiring teacher.

She helped me to better understand how to improve my ellipses, which are still a work in progress but slowly improving.

Warm thanks also go to the fantastic staff at The Art School in Great Falls.

They are always there when I need tutoring, mentoring, and extra support.

Mayra Ruiz-McPherson

A Doodled Girl

,
A pencil sketch doodle of a girl wearing studious glasses

Here’s a doodle of a young girl quickly sketched while attending a webinar today.

She’s got thick, studious-looking glasses and a half-baked grin on her face.

🙂

Enjoy!
Mayra Ruiz-McPherson

Let's stay in touch!

Sign up to receive occasional insights, tips, and bonus content! Plus subscribers receive a link to my FREE ILLUSTRATION STARTER GUIDE.

I won't spam you. And you can unsubscribe anytime. Powered by ConvertKit