Drawing Cityscapes by Paul Hiles

27 March 2015

I am fascinated by the architecture and life of the city. The constantly changing light and shadow, the reflection on the Thames and shadows created by tall buildings... from quiet and contemplative parts of the city, to the bustling life of the West End.  These elements inspire my work and drive me on to find more ways to communicate what I see and feel in these exciting environments.

I develop my ideas in a small sketchbook, adding notes and scribbles,  I’m becoming more fascinated by stories, history, memories and experiences from childhood to present day events and people that have influenced or inspired me, my work is a reflection of what I continue to learn.

Drawing Cityscapes by Paul Hiles

Nelson's perspective

 Top tips for drawing cityscapes

First gather lots of visual material such as photographs you have taken or images in magazines, books, the internet or other artists work. I sketch whenever I can; adding details, ideas with notes and observations in my sketchbook. Reference material is important.

Use drawings of different cityscapes for reference to see how the artist has tackled it and use different mediums to create different effects. This will get you thinking about composition, lighting, colour, tone etc. If something or someone inspires you, retain it. Paul Cezanne, David Bomberg, Frank Auerbach continue to inspire me.

Have a strong focal point.

I start with a simple layout at the top and work down, where larger shapes are in respect to the horizon line, buildings, vehicles, fixtures and people are visualized as simple shapes and forms. Know which lines are important. I don't draw every line. Perspective lines are more important than those that describe little things like window trims and street signs.

I exaggerate the curve of the horizon in the distance with soft, less detailed buildings drawn with 2H and HB pencils; this helps to gently lead the eye to a distant focal point. I use softer, darker 3B to 9B pencils for the detail in the foreground, the deeper contracts of light and shade help to create a greater three dimensional feel and make the foreground stand out. This can help to enhance a greater sense of scale depth and drama in a cityscape.

I add the finishing touches and details once the basic layout is established.

Don’t be afraid to scrap or re draw a piece of work, do it again!

Paul was the second prize winner with the drawing 'London 2012' at the Derwent Art Prize 2014

Visit Paul's website - www.paulhiles.co.uk

Drawing Cityscapes by Paul Hiles

London 2012

 

Comments
11:30 by Emma Chapman Emma Chapman

How to Draw the Human Form; Figure Drawing by Jill Preston

20 March 2015

Drawing the human form is challenging and can be very frustrating.  Yet it can be exhilarating and sublimely satisfying.  The process is the key.  Here are some pointers.

Gesture drawing to warm up and avoid inhibition.

 How to Draw the Human Form; Figure Drawing by Jill Preston

Figure 1

Work quickly, drawing arm outstretched, look for flow, rhythm and movement.

 

How to Draw the Human Form; Figure Drawing by Jill Preston

Figure 2

Work boldly, with the whole body.  Avoid premature attention to detail.

Use the side of the tool to block in the large areas in shadow. Charcoal is a most effective medium. Do not measure at this stage; check the half way point and use plumb lines.     

How to Draw the Human Form; Figure Drawing by Jill Preston

Figure 3

Squint and see the lights and darks.

Areas of light and shadow give volume and substance to the figure.

Keep exploring, avoid hard outlines, early lines wont necessarily be the best so sketch these lightly.

How to Draw the Human Form; Figure Drawing by Jill Preston

Figure 4

Explore the landmarks and plane breaks; - see on Figure 4 -   the shoulder, under the collar bone, down to the base of the rib cage and similarly the top plane of the knuckles of the clenched hand.

How to Draw the Human Form; Figure Drawing by Jill Preston

Figure 5

Even at the final stage, keep away from detail.

On this draped figure, only the big folds have been described, enhancing the underlying planes.

Charcoal is great, but soft pastels as a drawing tool, can be exhilarating!

How to Draw the Human Form; Figure Drawing by Jill Preston

Figure 6

Placing the figure in its context, and using colour to continue exploring the form can be a thrilling part of the process.

Life drawing needs continuing practice, and good teachers are invaluable. 

"Drawing is like studying Greek and piano - you can't speak or play in your conscious, which is clumsy.  You must get into your subconscious, which is graceful.  But that takes time. "

(Hale, R.B. 1991 Master Class in Figure Drawing  Watson - Guptill Publications/New York)

Visit Jill's website www.spacecolour.wordpress.com 

Visit the Derwent website www.pencils.co.uk

Comments
11:30 by Emma Chapman Emma Chapman

Painting on the streets of London with Pintar Rapido

2 March 2015

We are very pleased to be donating a prize to Pintar Rapido again this year.

Pintar Rapido is open to professional and amateur artists of all skill levels and the challenge is to celebrate London’s urban cityscape and diversity by creating a picture from start to finish in a day. The following day all the paintings will be hung in a public exhibition and sale at Chelsea Old Town Hall, King’s Road Chelsea, London where the Pintar Prizes will be awarded.

Roger Beckett, founder, said: “Last year we had over 400 artists taking part in making Pintar Rapido the biggest outdoor painting festival and exhibition in the UK !It’s great fun and everybody is welcome.”

Pintar Rapido London takes place over the weekend of July 11/12 this year and tickets for artists are now available on the website.

Everyone who takes part in Pintar Rapido is automatically entered into the Pintar Prize. This year there is £3,000 worth of prizes.

  • £1,000 cash prize donated by sofa.com
  • A £750 Cass Art Gift Voucher
  • £500 cash prize donated by Bective Leslie Marsh
  • A voucher for £250 worth of Derwent products
  • Five day's worth of Open Studio time (worth £240) donated byHeatherley's School of Art
  • And another prize of five day's worth of Open Studio tuition(worth £240) donated by Heatherley's School of Art

The judging will take place the morning of the Pintar Rapido exhibition on July 12. The winners will be announced at 12 noon. The judges will be awarding artists who they believe have best captured the spirit of city in their picture.

www.pintarrapido.com

Painting on the streets of London with Pintar Rapido        Painting on the streets of London with Pintar Rapido

   

Photography: Franco Camillo

Comments
16:21 by Emma Chapman Emma Chapman

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

27 February 2015

 Who would have thought you could do so much with a pen!

 

1. Stones, pop down to the beach and pick some up.

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

2. Skateboard.

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

3. Picture frame, would make a lovely gift for mum!

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

4. A Ukulele, release your inner George Formby.

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

5. Trainers, other trainer brands are available of course!

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

6. A backpack.

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

7. Canvas bags, off to the beach again....

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

8. Glass baubles.

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

9. Lamp, we love this intricate design.

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

10. Saw, if ever you felt the need to decorate your dad's.

(although we don't recommend you do, we're just showing that you can use them on metal really).

 

10 things to decorate with our Graphik pens, to make them look cool!

 

For more information on our Graphik pens, which are clearly magical, please visit our website http://www.pencils.co.uk/en/gb/6128/pens

These wonderful items were decorated by our very talented Marketing department.

Comments
09:30 by Emma Chapman Emma Chapman

Environmental initiatives at the Cumberland Pencil Company

18 December 2014

We are aware just how important it is to protect the world around us. Without wood, we wouldn’t have pencils! 

In 2008 we moved from Keswick to Lillyhall, Workington where the new factory was built with the environment in mind. Below are some of the ways we help reduce our impact on the environment.

Environmental initiatives at the Cumberland Pencil Company

-Back at our old factory we developed a painting process for pencils that significantly reduced our VOC emissions, by using UV curing instead of solvent based paints.

-The waste sawdust from the manufacturing process is burnt in a furnace. The furnace is monitored weekly to ensure emissions are well below and legislation. The heat generated from burning the waste is used to heat the factory in winter!

-Rain water is collected and used to flush our toilets.

Environmental initiatives at the Cumberland Pencil Company

-All lights are controlled by motion sensors, so that they are switched off automatically if there is no-one in the room.

-We are constantly looking to improve and reduce the packaging we use for our pencils. As part of ACCO Brands, our parent company, we have supported the recycling of more than 900 tonnes of material year on year, for the last 10 years.

-The company also operates a Cycle to work scheme, to encourage workers to cycle instead of using their cars.

Environmental initiatives at the Cumberland Pencil Company

Barbara Murray (our Technical Manager) and the rest of the environmental team have won a few awards for their hard work! In 2005 the Company was presented with the Queen’s Award for Sustainable Development. Most recently, in October 2014, we won the Environmental & Energy Awareness Award at the local CN Business Awards.

Each year we look for new ways in which we can help the environment. This year we are focusing on reducing and segregating waste. One of the many ways we hope to achieve this is by installing a portable compactor for general waste. This will hold between 4-6 tons of waste and will reduce our waste collection to one per month. We will also be installing a compactor for cardboard waste. We’re also looking at placing small bags in each office and in the factory for books, magazines, cans and bottles.

As you can tell, protecting the environment is very important to the Cumberland Pencil Company. It is something we will continue to work on for many many more years to come!

If you'd like to find out more about our manufacturing process watch the video below.


Find out more about us and our products:

www.pencils.co.uk

www.facebook.com/welovepencils

www.twitter.com/derwentpencils

www.derwentshop.co.uk

Comments
11:18 by Kirsty Vickers Kirsty Vickers

Interview: Amy Chalmers

9 December 2014

Interview: Amy Chalmers

Who’s your favourite artist/ illustrator or designer?

Off the top of my head, a few illustrators I have been returning to lately are Chris Ware, Shaun Tan, and Nick Hayes. I love looking at beautiful drawings, but I also admire the ability to tell a compelling story through images. I think it’s important as an illustrator to look beyond contemporary illustration for inspiration, so I try to keep my artistic interests quite wide. My MA course emphasized ways to present illustrations as beautiful objects, so I’ve developed an appreciation for well-designed and well-made books; I admire publishing companies like McSweeney’s, Nobrow, and Falmouth’s own Atlantic Press.

What do you listen to when drawing?

When I don’t need to concentrate too much, I listen to a lot of podcasts. Recently I’ve been hooked on Serial, an addictive new show from NPR. Music really depends, but today I’ve been playing some Shuggie Otis, Benjamin Clementine, and the Roots. In our house we listen to a song we like 600 times in a week until it begins to feel unhealthy… if it were a Taylor Swift song, I wouldn’t tell you!

Interview: Amy Chalmers

How do you get your head in a creative space?

At this time of year, creativity comes most easily. When it starts getting cold and dark, I crawl into a sort of “hibernation headspace” and seem to require more daydreaming time. I go for a walk or run in the morning and try to be actively observant of my surroundings, which is a challenge that sets me up mentally for the rest of the day. I try to take advantage of the times of day when my brain is less connected and more creative; early morning and late night. Also, coffee!

What’s your background in art and design?

I’ve just finished my MA in Illustration: Authorial Practice at Falmouth University, which is a terrific course. My undergraduate degree was in Art History and French at Wofford College, a little liberal arts school in South Carolina. I’ve always drawn, but not as a job or towards a degree until this year. As a baby I could draw faces before I could talk, which is either impressive or creepy. Or both.

Interview: Amy Chalmers

What do you find inspiring for your work?

If I’m looking for inspiration, I don’t have to go far. I’m surrounded by creative people in a beautiful place. I’m about to leave Cornwall, but I’ve found that no matter where I am, everything I need is on my doorstep.

What kind of source materials do you use in your work?

I have stacks of books, magazines, journals, clippings, cut-outs, cards… successful projects are often the result of my kleptomania. But these days I do most of my rooting around online… Pinterest is like Aladdin’s cave, and it doesn’t leave stacks of paper all over my desk.

How long to you spend working on one piece or commission?

That really depends, but 3 is a good number. 3 days, 3 hours, 3 weeks… for one drawing. I think 3 days is a good amount of time, with plenty of tea breaks and neck stretches.

Interview: Amy Chalmers

What’s the one tool you can’t do without?

An eraser for my many mistakes. I just bought one at the British Museum that looks like an Egyptian pyramid. Goes perfectly with a case of Derwent pencils.

Describe your studio or workspace for us.

Right now it’s a travelling show. I was in the beautiful MA studio until September, at a window desk dangerously close to a pub and a bakery. Now I live with my friend Emily in a pretty little flat, and we give each other advice and encouragement in our work. In a few weeks I’ll be back at my folks’ house in South Carolina, surrounded by my old dollhouse, a drum kit, and a dog.

Interview: Amy Chalmers

Tell us about you! What, aside from drawing takes up your time?

I spend as much time as I can outdoors, and have been very lucky to live in Cornwall, wandering along the coast and swimming in the sea. I’ve travelled, lived, and worked in a variety of interesting places, which is good fuel for art. I also like reading, writing, cooking, yoga, and anything crafty.

Where can we see more of your work and what’s up and coming for you this year?

Please have a look at my website and blog, follow me on twitter, like me on Facebook… you know how it goes! I don’t have any definite plans for 2015, but I have a feeling it will be an exciting year. I do know that I’ll be having lots of fun playing with my new art supplies from Derwent!

Facebook: facebook.com/AmyChalmersIllustration

Tumblr: achalmersillustration.tumblr.com/

Twitter: twitter.com/AmyChalmers89

Comments
12:22 by Kirsty Vickers Kirsty Vickers

Get creative this Christmas!

2 December 2014

Get creative this Christmas!

Why not make your own Christmas cards and gifts this Christmas? This quick and simple tutorial shows you how to use the Derwent Printmaking Set to create your own Christmas card.

 

Get creative this Christmas!

 

You will need:

1 card

1 piece of paper

Derwent Printmaking Kit which contains:

Inktense Blocks

2 sheets of printing foam

1 Embossing Tool

1 Spritzer

1 Printing Roller

Get creative this Christmas!Step 1

Cut a piece of printing foam to your desired size.

Step 2

Draw your design onto the foam with the Embossing Tool. Go over the design a few times to ensure the indents are strong.

Get creative this Christmas!

 

Step 3

Spray water over the design with the Spritzer.

Get creative this Christmas!

 

Step 4

Rub the Inktense Block directly over the wet foam to add colour. You can add more than one colour if you wish, and even mix colours directly on the foam.

Get creative this Christmas!

 

Step 5

Position the foam on your card or piece of paper and then carefully flip it over keeping the foam in position.

Get creative this Christmas!

Smooth over the paper with the roller to transfer the image.

Get creative this Christmas!

You could add extra details or a Christmas message to your design using Inktense Pencils.

Get creative this Christmas!

And your card is complete! Use the same technique to create your own gift tags and Christmas decorations, or customise a canvas bag or pencil case for someone special.

Get your Printmaking set here: www.derwentshop.co.uk

Comments
09:25 by Kirsty Vickers Kirsty Vickers

Interview: Daniel Jamie Williams

26 November 2014

Interview: Daniel Jamie Williams

Who’s your favourite artist/ illustrator or designer?
I'd say my favourite artist is Egon Schiele. His style has influenced the way I draw quite a lot since I discovered him during my A levels.

What do you listen to when drawing?
I listen to lots of different music. Usually indie or folk. Sometimes I listen to internet radio shows or I'll have Netflix on. I find it difficult to work in silence.

How do you get your head in a creative space?
I usually work really late at night or early morning. I find it's easier to focus and get ideas. Sometimes ideas comes to me whilst I'm trying to sleep so I have to either write them down or start work on them straight away.

Interview: Daniel Jamie Williams

What’s your background in art and design?
I studied art through GCSE and A levels before going on to do a one year foundation course where I decided to focus on illustration. I recently graduated from a Graphic Design and Illustration BA course in London and now I'm freelancing.

What do you find inspiring for your work?
Music is a big inspiration for me. I like the visualisation of lyrics. I'm also inspired by the way people act and feel and, I suppose, the darker or less talked about side of human emotion. Sometimes it's just a case of having a strange idea that I need to get onto paper.

What kind of source materials do you use in your work?
I don't usually draw from existing images but recently I've started a series of drawings of musicians who I like. If I do draw from reference it's usually skeletons or animals.

Interview: Daniel Jamie Williams

How long to you spend working on one piece or commission?
It varies a lot on what I'm doing it for. Sometimes I like to do simple images which evolve from sketches and sometimes I like to create elaborate, detailed pieces which take many hours. If I digitally colour/edit the work it adds another few hours (plus the time I spend looking at the work to try and work out if it's how I want it to be).

What’s the one tool you can’t do without?
It has to be the pencil. I use mechanical pencils a lot; I find them very practical and versatile. Although I use digital software a lot I nearly always start with a pencil drawing.

Describe your studio or workspace for us
I work from my bedroom. Currently it's a desk, a PC, a scanner, a printer, my pencils and paper and usually empty mugs or things that should be in the bin. I'm not the most tidy of people.

Interview: Daniel Jamie Williams

Tell us about you! What, aside from drawing takes up your time?
I love music and I play the guitar so I spent a lot of time playing or writing music. I like to write short stories, poems etc too - sometimes I combine my writing and illustrations. In future I'd like to put more focus on that.

Where can we see more of your work and what’s up and coming for you this year?
I have a website but I'm also really into social media so I'm on Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook etc. I go by the name @WishWelliams usually. My work's also in various magazines and publications and I like to take part in gallery shows when I can!
I'm currently working on a new illustrated zine as well as poster designs for events in London.

Interview: Daniel Jamie Williams

Website: www.danieljamiewilliams.com

Tumblr: www.wishwelliams.tumblr.com

Twitter: www.twitter.com/wishwelliams

Instagram: www.instagram.com/wishwelliams

Facebook: www.facebook.com/wishwelliams

Comments
09:17 by Kirsty Vickers Kirsty Vickers

How to: Graphik Line Painters

18 November 2014

How to: Graphik Line Painters

Paint pens need to be activated before use:

How to: Graphik Line Painters

  1. Shake the pen for 20 seconds or until the pigment has mixed.
  2. Remove the lid and push the nib down on your paper and hold for 2 seconds. DO THIS ONLY ONCE.
  3. Keep the pen in an upright position.
  4. Be patient, the ink will flow through to the nib. You will see it drop down and colour the nib, then you are ready to draw.
  5. If the ink fails to flow, repeat the process, but never pump the nib up and down unless you want to flood the nib.

 

Let us show you what you can do with them!

How to: Graphik Line Painters

  1. Draw some lines - feel how the ink flows.
  2. Fill in some solid colour – wow! Really opaque!
  3. If you pump the pen you will flood the nib - sometimes this is cool! You can blow into the ink to make splats.
  4. If you blow across a nib heavy with ink, you can spray colour.
  5. Try working contrasting colours over the top.
  6. Whilst your paint is wet you can add water to dilute pigments, use a waterbrush or simply blow!
  7. Most importantly have fun and experiment!

 

Store pens horizontally.

 

For more tips and videos on how to use Line Painters visit: www.pencils.co.uk

Order your free sample here: www.derwentshop.co.uk

Comments
11:58 by Kirsty Vickers Kirsty Vickers

Christmas Gift Ideas!

12 November 2014

Christmas Gift Ideas!

Give the gift of creativity this year! Derwent have a variety of products which would make the perfect present for any artist, whether they are professional or a beginner.

Christmas Gift Ideas!

 

Best of British 

The ultimate luxury gift for a pencil addict!

Celebrating the best of Britain, this beautiful oak wooden box contains over 160 of our most popular pencils and blocks, a selection of accessories, and 10 special commemorative pieces that pay homage to the glory of Great Britain.

Christmas Gift Ideas!

Sketching Wallet

This wallet contains a broad selection of sketching media including Graphic, Watersoluble Sketching, Onyx, Charcoal and Tinted Charcoal pencils. It also contains a 30 page A5 Sketch Pad. A great gift for professional artists and graphite lovers.

Christmas Gift Ideas!

Derwent Academy Sketch & Colour set

The Derwent Academy range is for beginner artists who want to draw but don’t know where to start. This set contains 18 colour pencils and 6 graphite sketching pencils.

Christmas Gift Ideas!

Graphik Line Painter 20 box

The full monty! This box contains all of the new Derwent Graphik Line Painter pens. Perfect for artists, illustrators and lovers of fineliners.

Christmas Gift Ideas!

 

 

Storage – for those who have lots of pencils and nowhere to put them!

Empty wooden box

The ultimate pencil storage solution!

This large storage box holds up to 153 pencils and blocks with space for accessories and other artist essentials.

Christmas Gift Ideas!

Pencil Buddy

This stylish desk unit holds pencils at an angle for easy selection and even keeps short pencils easily accessible. Perfect for untidy artists!

Christmas Gift Ideas!

Make your own cards and gifts!

Inktense Printmaking Kit

Make your own Christmas cards using the Inktense Printmaking set. Inktense works brilliantly on fabric too, customise a canvas bag or t-shirt! This set contains 6 Inktense Blocks, a printing roller, 3 sheets of printing foam, a double ended embossing tool and a Derwent Spritzer.

Christmas Gift Ideas!

For more gift ideas visit: www.derwentshop.co.uk

Christmas Gift Ideas!

Comments
09:48 by Kirsty Vickers Kirsty Vickers