Working artist

hand eye

Art Stuff: In the above picture, you can see traces of the “non-repro” blue pencil I sometimes use in my ink drawings. When I was showing my work at Gen-con, a lot of people asked about the blue pencil marks obvious in some of my originals. Staedtler (and a few other manufacturers) make a pencil in a useful pale blue color (Staedtler calls it “non-repro blue” because this particular color did not show up very well when scanned on old fashioned copiers… most modern scanners pick it up pretty well but it is easy to select and eliminate after scanning). Since I am not always good at erasing stuff, I like the pale blue pencil since it’s easier to drop it out in scanning, and, if I don’t press too hard, it doesn’t show up in a grayscale scan at all. Unfortunately, the non-repro blue pencil isn’t made of conventional graphite, so it doesn’t draw as easily as regular pencils and it has a somewhat waxy consistency… if I get too heavy handed with it, it can even create a waxy buildup on the paper that repels the ink. In addition, the blue pencil doesn’t come in different grades… for drawing, I like to use a combination of 2h (a hard pencil) and HB (a fairily soft pencil) as well as my old standard, the “number 2 pencil” that everyone in the USA grew up using in school. My current practice is to use the blue pencil lightly to rough things out and then go in with conventional pencil.

I’ve always been bad about erasing pencil marks after I finish a drawing which drives people with OCD insane… to be honest, as an artist, I actually LIKE seeing the marks the artist used to create a drawing, even in reproduction.

I’m currently pretty busy with a couple commissions (some of them non-gaming industry related) plus my midnight shifts at the hospital. In less than a week I take off for St. Louis, MO., to see family and friends.

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