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May 21, 2015

Sketchcraft

Crystal balls, ouija, magic circles… Is this a sketchbook or a spellbook? Emma Black pulls art and occult together in a hypnotic style. There’s something in the cryptic imagery that makes it come off more spiritual than spooky. Again and again I find myself mesmerized by her ritualistic repetition of geometric patterns and shading in thin, straight lines. Her series of animal sketches has the same magical undertones, where in pencil she draws the natural, then adds an element of the unnatural in red. It’s a compelling sketch style that’s simplistic and mystic. 

You can follow Emma Black on instagram to keep up with her witchy business.

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May 18, 2015

Barcelona, 365

I'm in the mood for some sight-seeing today. I took a quick tour around Barcelona through the sketchbook of Òscar Julve. He is an illustrator from Spain who challenged himself to draw his city for an entire year. Barcelona, 365 is the well-chosen titled for his blog. I really enjoy seeing artists set specific motivational challenges for themselves to get sketching, even if it's an idea as simple as doodling your way through your hometown. It's easy to get caught in the details when sketching something right in front of you, but Julve's talented hands stick to creating rough sketches out of thin lines that evocatively capture the ambiance of Barcelona's corners.

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May 11, 2015

Soft Shading, Bold Contrast

Elfandiary’s sketchbook is magic. I’ve been bewitched by the soft shading + sharp geometric cut-outs coming together to make something that is delicate and bold at the same time. Page after page of glamorous people are drawn in a style that is realistic in some parts and sketchy in others. It’s both exciting and elegant! The artist has also posted a few mesmerizing time lapse videos of their drawing process that you can see right here.

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May 4, 2015

Serial Doodling

I began following Eric von Boxtel on Instagram a few months ago, when his layered and full-colored doodles popped up on my feed. They instantly caught my attention because there's probably nothing I like more than thick black doodled lines over a backdrop of color. It looks easy, it looks like a mish mash of a mess, like a kid who might have gotten away with a box of markers, but it's not at all the case.

These scribbles and shapes of color are intentional and come together so perfectly. I love looking at each spread, trying to find something new or to figure what he's drawn first on the page. If you want to be mesmerized for a full minute and forty-five seconds, watch this time-lapse video.

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April 8, 2015

April Spooks

I never wait until October to enjoy a good dose of spooky. This Italian artist's sketchbook is a small town of goofy monsters, all drawn in sepia pen. The bizarre creatures Paride Bertolin dreams up are scary in design, but the darkness became lighthearted after I noticed their awkward and playful expressions. I find it so endearing to see them looking gawky and stiff, like nervous new acquaintances or someone who hates having their picture taken. If the quirky and the macabre are right up your alley, go look at Bertolinís sketchbook right now!



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April 6, 2015

Scenic Side of a Comic Artist


David Newbold's website, Twitter, and Imgur are filled with countless pages of comics and graphic novels. While these are stunningly rendered, I was immediately more captivated by his observational sketches. He uses walnut ink to create beautiful, sprawling, intricately detailed sketches while traveling throughout the world. In their sepia tone, they feel like a memory.

Newbold's skill with ink is exceptional. He brings out incredible detail in the foreground, creates shadow and texture with well-placed strokes, and paints appropriately subtle backgrounds. I’m completely envious of his confidence with ink!

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April 1, 2015

Illustrated Travel Journals

Chris Buchholz has mastered something I aspire to create myself: the illustrated travel journal. He's had the opportunity to do a good amount of travel, and his experiences spill out brilliantly onto the pages of his sketchbooks, accompanied by written reflection. Chris's sketchbook is his constant companion as he travels through and lives in these different places. The images you see here are his time spent in the Dominican Republic and Italy. The drawings themselves are bright and beautiful, especially when seeing them on such simple a canvas as a sketchbook.

Chris's technique with line and color brings the viewer into the experience: you can feel how hot it is in the DR, and how delicious a super fria cerveza would be at midday. Furthermore, you can taste how fresh the fruit is at the Italian market.

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