Head Drawing with Erik Gist – final thoughts and comparison

After 10 weeks, the term is over! Time to wrap it up and see if I learned something. Week 10 (which I did not post here, but you can find on my instagram account: was quite satisfactory, but the test proof was week 11, aka did I really learn something?
I drew the same subject of week 1, Rob, from the exact same angle, and I am quite pleased with the difference:

Head Drawing with Erik Gist results comparison

I cannot post the reference, but what I can say is that I got the height/width proportion a little off, as well as the corners of the mouth a little too low, together with some other little things that I could have seen better.
I still am where I am, my eye needs to develop but I can definitely see an improvement from week 1. What do you think? This class has been worth every cent for me, can’t wait for next term!

Thanks again to Erik Gist (If you want to check out his instagram page, here it is: the awesome teaching and precious advice, and congratulations to all of the students who joined the class, both audit and full subscription!

p.s. for more info about the Watts Atelier, the brick&mortar school and/or the livestream classes, you can checkout


Head Drawing with Erik Gist, week 3 progress

Erik Gist Head Drawing class week 3

I am taking a head drawing class with Erik Gist (who is also my mentor, actually), and I am really excited about it!
Each week’s class is packed with great info, and the quality is just unparalleled. I still need to work on some edges, but I feel like I am slowly progressing and breaking the plateau.

I also get weekly critiques and video traceovers, which are an amazing tool for learning and clearly visualizing weak areas to focus on.

This one was about 2 hours!


Watts Atelier’s Skill Building Challenge 25

Mom and Dad's Portrait in charcoal

This is my entry for the Skill Building Challenge 25 at the Watts Atelier of the Arts, and the last month of the yearly Master Skill Building Challenge.
The subject was supposed to be something we are really looking forward to be doing in our career, and that would have been fantasy illustration for me. However, I felt like I did not have the necessary skills to compete yet, so I chose to portray my parents. Here follows the reference I usedMon and Dad's portrait reference photo
After six long months, I feel like I did improve my skills a little bit, hopefully sign of an ascending path from now on.
Time to get back to the program, phew!

P.S. As a side note, I won the honorable mention 😀


Watts Atelier’s Skill Building Challenge 23 – Head Quick Sketch


The most taxing challenge so far 😀 I had never tried. It was my first attempt at quicksketch, and I can ensure it really is as stressful as it seems! I burned out until the end, so I am glad the next phase will be on figure.
The above was a one hour quicksketch (one hour is still a fairly short time for a portrait). Follow two twenty minutes:

week2 (1)week2 (2)









Then four 10 minutes:
week3_1 week3_2_3 week3_4

And lastly eight (!) 5 minutes (!). These were by far the most challenging, I can barely find proportions in 5 minutes!

week4_2 week4_1



Watts Atelier’s Skill Building Challenge 21 – Self Portrait

Watts Atelier Skill Building Challenge 21 - Self Portrait by Nemo

This is my entry for the second month of the Master Skill Building Challenge at the Watts Atelier of the Arts.
It’s actually the very first complete portrait in charcoal I draw, and I admit I am satisfied enough with the result. It’s by no means perfect, of course. I could have pushed the darks a bit more, and the nose is definitely smaller than the original (heh…).
Overall though, it’s decent enough to participate this month’s challenge.

Here follows the whole WIP, as always good luck to all participants!

Watts Atelier Skill Building Challenge 21 - Self Portrait by Nemo week 4 wipWatts Atelier Skill Building Challenge 21 - Self Portrait by Nemo week 3 finalWatts Atelier Skill Building Challenge 21 - Self Portrait by Nemo week 3 wipWatts Atelier Skill Building Challenge 21 - Self Portrait by Nemo week 2 finalWatts Atelier Skill Building Challenge 21 - Self Portrait by Nemo week 1 finalWatts Atelier Skill Building Challenge 21 - Self Portrait by Nemo week 1 lay-in


Punching Ball Arcade

We’ve had a (really) small fair in my town the last few days. Today, I went out for a short sketching session, hoping to find some weirdo to capture, or any decent attraction. The streets were deserted as I went out just right after lunch. I came across this quite interesting punching ball arcade , which I thought deserved to be recorded in the sketchbook:
Punching Ball Arcade SketchToo bad I am not done with my lightweight pochade easel yet, colors were decent, it would have been nice to capture those too.

Meanwhile, a guy was yelling to someone at the phone. Someone I guess owed him 75 euros. Precise 😀
While I was about to set off, a man (from the local market, he said) approached me and asked me if I could draw him as well. I told him I didn’t have enough time, but after his insisting requests I agreed on taking a very quick (15 minutes) sketch of him.

Market Guy

He was evidently convinced I could render a hyper-realistic drawing in a few seconds, so he stood still for about 5 minutes before starting to ask “are you done”. This deserves a LOL. To all of you who never picked up a pencil: no, artists can’t print out your face in a few strokes, unless they are very skilled. I am not a real artist, nor skilled, so.
The above is what I came up with, just a couple of inches tall. Despite some curious behind me whispering “PRECISO!” (meaning precise, in Italian), I think it’s not exactly like the subject. Still, practice.