Friday, December 22, 2017

Five Dogs Painting

This five dogs painting was a request by my sister.  It took a few days to capture good photos of these dogs, as they don't sit still and were quite an unruly bunch.  So I would wait patiently for each to sit still and look my way, only then would I quickly snap a lot of  continuous shots from my phone. Luckily, out of many useless shots, I managed to find some good shots that showed each of their distinct personalities.

    I started sketching them in my Artrage app and laid them out in a horizontal format.  Since there's five of them and I wanted to finish it before Christmas, I decided to just draw their heads, 

 For the painting, Instead of using Artrage app which is my go to app, I decided to use Clip Studio Paint Ex to familiarize myself  more with that app.    I'm still trying to learn and understand values, so I painted them in greyscale first.   To get the correct values, I  converted their photos to black and white first.  It was so enlightening to see what the real values of their colors really are.   Choco was a surprise to me because her brownish color was very light when seen in greyscale. I thought she would be a bit darker than Snowy, Creamy and Brownie. 

One of the basic painting skills I'm  learning is understanding the correct value structure. I'm no way near understanding that concept yet. But I know getting the correct values would make adding colors easier.   Below is the final version in color.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Quick Sketch - Lion

 In my art-learning journey, there are days I don't feel like sticking to the theme I set for myself.  I was on a horse drawing theme a few weeks back. But for some reason I just wanted to draw something else.   And's  a quick sketch of a lion's head.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Furry Goat

It's been awhile since I last posted a sketch. . I had been receiving some photo references from, for some time now, and  haven't sketched any of them until today.  It's a furry goat.  

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Back To Basics -Horse Studies 3

More horse studies  I haven't drawn the horse's skeleton before until now..  This helps me in taking  notes on the proportion and rhythm of it's skeletal structure. The body usually fits inside a square.  I've also animated it's basic walk cycle using Clip Studio Paint Ex, while the rest of the sketches were drawn in Artrage 5. Jack Hamm's, Ken Hultgren's,  Gottfried Bammes', Eliot Goldfinger's, Famous Artists Course books were used as my study reference books.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Back To Basics - Horse Studies 02

More horse studies. I used Jack Hamm's How to Draw Animals, and Gottfried Bammes' The Artist's Guide To Drawing Animals books for reference..  I've collected a number of books over the years but it's only now that I'm looking at them more closely.   

Friday, October 13, 2017

Back To Basics - Horse Studies

After months of  doing my Daily Sketch drawing series, it surely helped gain me back my confidence in drawing animals. Using photographs either from friends or found online as references, I would draw different animals by copying it.  It served a purpose of harnessing my observational drawing skills, a fundamental skill any artist should have.  But now it's time to really learn animal drawing a bit more deeply.

And so,  I'm now taking a slower pace to practice and study some animal anatomy and construction with the goal of eventually being able to draw, and design animals and creatures from imagination.  Thus, I'm starting a new drawing series - Back To  Basics. I plan to go back to learning the fundamentals  of not only animal drawing, but also that of figure drawing, human anatomy, perspective, composition, design, and color.   Listing all of that can seemed really daunting. So  I'll take one small step everyday. No pressure. Just learn it till it sticks.

So for now, here's some Horse Studies.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Daily Sketch 121 - Tiger Head

Tiger Head

Time for big cats. It's a head study of a tiger. .  It won't be enough for me to just sketch this in greyscale. like in my previous cat heads.  It is such a bright-colored animal.  So I glazed some bright orangey color that tigers usually have.  As for the stripes, inking it with the pen tool seemed appropriate, and then scraped  it with the palette knife tool to achieve some fur texture and then blended it to soften it after.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Daily Sketch 120 - Cat Laugh.

More feline cuteness.... cats that seem to be laughing.   These are copied from cat photo references,
and it's amazing how cartoon-like their expression looks.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Daily Sketch 119 - Cat Faces

Cat Faces
The many faces of a cat -- the innocent look, the diva look, the sleeping-baby look, and the vampire look.  One moment it can look so sweet  and cuddly, then  another moment it  can look cold and scary.  Just a black and white pencil sketch for today. 

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Daily Sketch 118 - Drama Cat

Drama Cat

It's easy to anthropomorphize this cat.  With those lazy pose and blank stare, I only had to add a dark background and some lighting, then this lounging cat suddenly evokes a feeling of drama as if  it's acting.  So I entitled this sketch as Drama Cat.  

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Daily Sketch 117 - Cat Blue

Cat Blue

After getting used to drawing dogs for weeks, this sketch almost didn't happen. Because I was sketching another dog instead of a cat like I said I would. Silly me. After realizing it, I quickly shifted to drawing this cat, whose looking blue. So here's Daily Sketch 117 - Cat Blue.  

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Daily Sketch 116 - Cat Basking

Cat Basking sketch


In the previous post, I said that I'll be focusing on learning the art and techniques of digital painting, specifically using Photoshop.  This plan would definitely affect my daily sketching routine.

So today, I was originally planning to just do a quick sketch of a cat, and be done with it so I can focus on my main study of Photoshop.  I used Artrage which is still my favorite drawing app. However. I was having fun, so I  decided to just continue and finish it. 

So here's the final sketch.

Cat Basking full color

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Daily Sketch 115 - Prince

Photo reference by Jene Espiritu

The challenge of this subject , aside from drawing the likeness of the dog, was in figuring out the form underneath the shaggy fur and to render it convincingly, without overdoing the details of it all. 

I have been sketching dogs for months now, and yet I had a hard time with this dog, a shaggy maltese named Prince.  I originally plan to use Clip Studio Paint for this sketch, but since I was having such a hard time drawing and painting this that to use a program I'm still unfamiliar with would be another difficulty I wouldn't want to take on right now. So I reverted back to using Artrage.

After this sketch, I plan to focus in learning the technical aspect of digital painting. So no more sketching dogs for a while.  There's so much I need to study and learn.   Now that I'm in the right frame of mind, it's  a good time for me to do just that.  

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Daily Sketch 114 - Sace

Learning a new software for digital painting can be intimidating and overwhelming. I would usually watch a lot of video tutorials on how to use it.  It can be so tedious and boring. And so I decided to just start using it in creating an artwork, and learn the tools and presets as I go. This means that my workflow wouldn't be as smooth-sailing yet, because of the frequent stopping to research the solution to whatever problem I would encounter in using  the program.

This is why I've been using Artrage for as my main drawing and painting application for the past 4 months now because of it's simplicity and user-friendliness that allows me to just focus on the drawing and painting aspect of digital art, without much  technical complications.

However, I also wanted to learn and be proficient in the other digital art softwares like Photoshop and Clip Studio Paint. And so, for this sketch, I started the drawing the initial blocking and painting in Artrage 5, then continued to finalize the painting in  Clip Studio Paint. So far, I managed to replicate my Artrage work process to Clip Studio Paint successfully.  I know I'm just skimming the surface of the program, and there's a lot more to explore and learn.  But for a simple one-character painting, I think I adapted to it very well.

So here's my Daily Sketch for the day - Sace, an adorable Shih Tzu pet of my former work colleague, whose other dog, Pringles,  I've also painted before, 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Daily Sketch 113 - Older Creamy

Older Creamy

This sketch took longer than usual. I was sick for a few days and it's only now that I finally able to finish it.  It's hard to draw with a runny nose.

In those sick days where I can't really draw,  I had been doing some painting art book reading and learned a few bits here and there from different tutorial videos online. I tried incorporating some of those bits here.  One of the things I'm learning is about observational skills - how to accurately draw and paint your subject's form and color.  I had been doing some visual measuring loosely before and the tips I learned from those tutorials helped reinforced it and also provided me with some focus.

So far, I'm satisfied with what I've done. I'd like to try doing some human portraits too as my next challenge, which I've  been avoiding.   But not for long now.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Daily Sketch 112 - Boomer & Fluffy Portrait

Rough Sketch
I wasn't feeling well when I started this sketch. A rough sketch was all I could manage yesterday. Today, I'm having a terrible cold. But this sketch needs to be finished. So slowly but surely, I worked on it till it's done. 

After finishing the rough sketch yesterday, I proceeded to clean it up by using a pen tool in Artrage, to create an inked drawing look.  I haven't really done much inked drawings before, so I take this as a good small step. I know it's not the same as using real pen and ink on real paper, but using a digital medium frees me from worrying about wasting art materials as I learn and inevitably will make mistakes.  I'm happy with what I've done.

Inked version

I could have just left it at that, but I decided to add color to see how it would look. So with the inked drawings on the top layer, I added the whites underneath, and then glazed in some color  in blend mode for the tongue, inner ear skin, and eyes. 

Then for the background, I added some gradient color for the final version.

Final version

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Daily Sketch 111 - Queenie Smiles

Here's Queenie in her extreme, cuddly cuteness.  A fluffy white body with a face that looked like she's wearing a mask, don't know what type of dog she was. I don't even remember who gave her to me. She wasn't my first dog. She could be one of my last. I'd like to have a new dog someday, but not just yet. I'm quite content with just drawing and painting dogs for now.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Daily Sketch 110 - Queenie

So it's my turn to sketch my own dog today. This is Queenie during her puppy days. She's small and fragile-looking, yet she's not afraid to fight with my other dog triple her size. She's in dog heaven now.

Daily Sketch 109 - Happy Huskies

Happy Huskies
My sketch for the day is these two adorable huskies,  Fluffy and Boomer, together.   If they're not annoying each other, they're quite content hanging out with teach other, or so I'm told.  For this sketch, and as with my previous sketches of them, I draw them in grey scale first, and the color added  later. Once everything's final, I add a noise filter to the whole image to give it some texture.


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Daily Sketch 108 - Boomer Sits

Boomer Sits
Another Boomer drawing for today. He seemed well-behaved here. I reckon he got scolded here. Just look at that grumpy-looking face. Hehe.

Daily Sketch 107 - Boomer's Hula Hoop

Boomer's Hula Hoop

 Boomer, my sister's other pet husky, seemed to want to play the hula hoop.  Or it could be that he thought it's a big chew toy. Whichever it was, this is just too cute that I just have to draw this as one of my daily sketches.  This is the second time I painted this dog. The first time was done in Photoshop, while this was painted using ArtRage 5.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Daily Sketch 106 - Fluffy Looking Silly

Fluffy Looking Silly

Another Fluffy drawing, a cute one.  She got caught and scolded for doing something naughty, and looked like this with a silly smile with ears folded back.
This sketch was done using Artrage 5 - my favorite drawing and painting application for my Daily Sketches.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Daily Sketch 105 - Fluffy Lounging

Fluffy Lounging

Having drawn and painted a few dogs already, I acquired a few painting techniques for the fur. I usually use either the eraser or the palette knife for the fur by earading or pullong out the fur at the edges.  And as a finishing touch, I added some noise filter to the final image to minimize the too-sleek look. 

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Daily Sketch 104 - Fluffy

For the third time  I decided to paint Fluffy again.  I started drawing rough sketches yesterday, and continued to finish to completion one of the sketches, starting with this one.  More Fluffy sketches to come....

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Daily Sketch 103 - Creamy Sketches

It's Creamy again!  These are from her puppy days. She's actually old now, and is still sad-faced. Sometimes, she seemed to smile when she sees me. (Or she could be just hungry).

These are some loose sketches from her old puppy photos.  Sketching loosely was the preferred way of drawing for animators, because the drawings seemed to have more life in them. Also because there are clean-up artists who would do the cleaning up of lines later on.

I remember being told by my supervisor to loosen up in my roughs. I used to be very clean in my rough drawings. I think I still do.  These sketches look deceptively easy, but it's not. Every stroke were slow, searching, and the process systematic.  I hope to someday churn this out real quick. But for now, I'm good with these.

Daily Sketch 102 - Sitting Creamy

Sitting Creamy

Another sketch of Creamy. A different style this time. Minimal color and thicker outline. Not quite sure how to render this at first. But decided to just keep it simple.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Daily Sketch 101 - Pensive Creamy

I'm back to drawing again from a 2-week break after finishing my self-imposed 100-day sketch challenge.   The main objective of that challenge was to instill in me the habit of sketching daily.
I was a traditional animator before and was actually drawing professionally everyday. But beyond my job, I didn't do any personal drawings. It was because of many excuses, such as exhaustion from work.  lack of time,  unmotivated and uninspired, lack of understanding of the benefits of doing it,  and sheer laziness.  Then when I acquired a repetitive strain injury in my right hand, this caused me to stop drawing altogether and changed career from being a traditional animator to a 3d  animator. This further caused me to shy away from drawing for the same excuses as before.
To my regret, I now realized my folly. Daily sketching is like physical exercise.  To be physically fit, one needs to exercise regularly, if not daily. Same with drawing.  Thus the 100-day sketch challenge. And just like physical fitness, it is never too late. It won't be easy, but it's doable.
The challenge allowed me to test my art skills, it's strength and weaknesses. I'm gratified with what I've done, and inspired to do more.  Still far-off from my goal but very encouraged.
So for this next drawing series, it won't be as hectic as before.  I will be drawing everyday, but will not necessarily try to finish one. This is so I can put more thought, research and study for each piece, which is what I'm after anyway.  I might be posting work-in-progress drawings though.

And so I'm starting off with dogs again. She's one of my sister's pet. This was from a photo taken when she was still a puppy. A sad-looking dog. Not the most energetic of dogs. She still looks the same today, albeit older.  But she's cute and gentle. I called this drawing, Pensive Creamy.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Drawing and Painting Zebras

This is one of my earlier daily sketches. With my self-imposed daily sketch deadline, I over-estimated my time to finish this.  It was during the early days where I wasn't content to just draw one animal.I would draw two or three, just like in here. So I ended up working past my deadline.  I realized soon enough that this is not sustainable for me yet, so in my later drawings, I drew only one.  Hahaha.

Hopefully, with more pencil mileage and experience, these kind of sketches would be faster for me to finish. 

Music: Wagon Wheel
By Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons : By Attribution 3.0

Drawing and Painting - Polar Bear

Another process video. Enjoy.


Music: Fig Leaf Times Two
By Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons : By Attribution 3.0

Drawing Process of Cow Face

   I've been editing these time lapse process videos this week , as a sort of review of how I did some of my daily sketches. A lot of experimenting and exploring of techniques. Some subjects are easier to draw than others.

  In this sketch, while working on it, I didn't realized not until towards the end that there was a double image because of another duplicate layer that is out of place. Haha.. You can see it towards the end of the video when I corrected the mistake.

  That's the problem of working too up-close to the drawing. It's one of the limitations of working on a small drawing area of my Cintiq 13hd. I zoom-in a lot to compensate. Someday, when and if I have the money, I'll upgrade to a bigger Cintiq.  But for now, got to remind myself to zoom out more.

Music: River Valley Breakdown;
By Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons : By Attribution 3.0

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Drawing Process - Wapiti

Because I'm still learning and exploring the different tools in Artrage, I usually don't remember how and what tools I used. Artrage has this script recorder that can record every step and strokes I make, so I can look back and see how I did it. I'm glad I didn't forget to turn it on for this artwork, coz I usually do. So here's the sped-up process video of Wapiti, my Daily Sketch Day 52. Hope you all like it.

Photo reference by Ben C Masters;
Music: Cherry Blossom.
By Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons : By Attribution 3.0

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Drawing And Painting - Giraffes

 Here's a look of how I did the Giraffes from my Daily Sketch drawing exercises. Done in Artrage 4 on a Cintiq 13hd pen display. As you can see, it's not without a lot of struggling and mistakes as I try to find the best way to make it look just right.


Music: Tafi Maradi
By Kevin Macleod (
Licensed under Creative Commons By Attribute 3.0 License

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Drawing & Painting Process - The Bear Hibernates

 For the meantime, while I'm taking a pause from my daily sketching, here's a sped-up drawing and painting process video of The Bear Hibernates artwork. Enjoy!

 This is the sped-up drawing process video of one of my Daily Sketch artwork for Instagram, called The Bear Hibernates. I used Artrage4 desktop app on a Wacom Cintiq 13HD pen display.

Music credit:
Monkeys Spinning Monkeys Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 100a - The Bear Hibernates.

This drawing says it all for me. I'm taking a short break from the daily sketching,and will be back with a new drawing project. For the meantime, sweet dreams.

Daily Sketch Day 100 - Polar Bear

Polar Bear

Woohoo! I achieved the end of my 100-day Sketch Challenge. This is Daily Sketch Day 100 - Polar Bear. I started this challenge to force myself to draw everyday and familiarize myself in drawing different animals. It's been fun most of the time and challenging some of the time.

There's still a lot to learn in terms of the anatomy and rendering techniques that I'd like to work on. But everday I'm surprised with what the resulting sketch would look like, as each animal presents different challenges and most of the time I'm not sure how to it would turn out. All of the sketches were drawn using photo references. 

It's a start. I would like to eventually draw animals from imagination and be able to design them.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 99 - Grizzly Bear

Grizzly Bear

For my 99th day sketch, it's the Grizzly Bear. The grizzlies are more aggressive than the black bears, and they usually stand their ground when faced with danger. One distinguishing feature of the grizzlies that differentiate them from the black bears is the hump on it's shoulders.  Also it's rump is lower than the shoulders, while in the black bear, it's the rump that is higher than the shoulders.  I didn't have enough time to draw the grizzly's full body to show these features, but I'll revisit this animal in the future to do a more in-depth study of it's anatomy. 

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 98 - Black Bear

Black Bear

It's now the 98th day of my self-imposed 100-day sketch challenge. It's another bear drawing -  the Black Bear.  It's the smallest among the bear species. They climb trees and are good swimmers. But they walk very slowly. They can run 40-50 kph but not for long because they tire easily.  Despite the name, they are not always black. They can be light brown, blonde and grey-blue. Now that I've been drawing daily for months now, finishing this drawing had been a lot faster.   Woohoo!

Photo reference by mmmavocado

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 97 - Giant Panda

Giant Panda

With four more days left before I reach the 100 day sketch challenge, I'll be drawing bears for the remaining days.   It's a Panda for today.  It's a bear native to China. It's also an endangered species. 
In this sketch, I'm trying out a method of sketching  more quickly. So I didn't do any rough pencil sketch like before. I just went straight to blocking in color and used the palette knife tool to later blend and smudge the edges for the fur. It didn't take long to finish this.

Photo reference used by : Sharon Sipple

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 96 - Red Panda

Red Panda

Another furry and cute animal is my sketch for today- the Red Panda.  Although it looks a a lot like a raccoon, it's not a member of the raccoon family. And they are not of the bear family neither, but they are their own independent species and are considered by many to be living fossils with no living relatives. In short, they are one of a kind.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 95 - Meerkat

All I can think of when drawing this Meerkat is Timon from the Lion King movie.  Another anthromorphic Meerkat I had the pleasure to animate when I worked on the Lion King 1 1/2  direct-to-video film years ago. And it's just four more days left before I reach the finish line of my 100-day Sketch Challenge.  Yehey!.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 94 - Lemurs


Lemur is my animal sketch for today. Found only in Madagascar and neigboring islands, lemurs are small primates known as "prosimian" (pre-primates or "before monkeys") They are an arboreal animals which means they live mostly in trees, but unlike the monkeys, they cannot hang by their tails. I'm very much reminded of King Julien, from the Dreamworks animated film Madagascar and it's TV spin-off  All-Hail King Julien. I had the opportunity to animate this creature for the  Nickelodeon's TV series of Penguins of Madagascar before and it was a fun experience.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 93 - Squirrel

The squirrel is my sketch for today. Another mammal of the rodent family.They are tiny and fast. And with their big eyes on the side of the head, they can see everything without having to turn their heads. They very forgetful that the acorn they love to hide would later become an oak tree because they forgot when they bury them.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 92 - Gerbils

Another furry creature for this day's sketch, the Gerbil. Adorable, small and cute, these creatures are popular pets because they don't smell and produces very little urine and waste, unlike the hamsters, mice or rats. They also like the company of humans.and not so fragile to be handled.  One thing though, if they are left alone, they will be lonely and can make them apprehensive and aggressive.  So I drew three of them. Haha.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 91 - Running Rabbits

For today's sketch, I wanted to draw a rabbit. Most of the references I was looking at had similar rabbit sitting poses. To break the monotony, I decided to draw active rabbits instead.  So it's running rabbits. With nine more days left till the my 100-day Sketch challenge finishes, I drew these rabbits as if they racing and can't wait to finish. 

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 90 - Raccoons Fishing

It's ten more days left before I finish my 100- day sketch challenge.  So for the next few days, the animals I'll be sketching would be of the furry kind. Today, it's the raccoons, known for it's dexterous front paws and it's facial mask.  It's a nocturnal animal, that sleeps during daytime and is very active at night. 

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 89 - Koalas

Today's sketch is the Koalas, another marsupials found in Australia.  They are not bears as some  erroneously call them. They are nocturnal animals, who sleeps by day and awake at night. As an arboreal animal, they are always seen clutching atop the tree branches.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 88 - Opossums


Today's sketch is another marsupial, the Opossums, commonly called as possums. It was described in Wikipedia as having "a head like a swine ... tail like a rat ... of the bigness of a cat." The mother will carry the young on her back, as they cling tightly as she climbing or running. When threatened or harmed, they usually will "play possum", mimicking the appearance and smell of a sick or dead animal. Haha, it probably works.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 87 - Kangaroos

Today's sketch is the Kangaroos, a marsupial which is characterized by having a pouch called marsupium to carry their young.  It belongs to the family of Macropods which means "Large Foot" and is the largest among the "kangaroo" family.  The wallaby is the smaller version of kangaroos, while the wallaroo is the middle-sized version.

Daily Sketch Day 86 - Giraffes

A visit to the zoo wouldn't be complete for me, if there's no Giraffes. These are one of the animals I was fascinated with when I was a child. They are the tallest mammals on Earth. Their necks are too short to reach the ground that they have to spread their legs wide apart awkwardly or kneel to reach the ground for a drink of water.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 85 - African Elephants

I just have to draw another elephants today. It's African Elephants, the largest land animal on Earth, and slightly larger than the Asian Elephant. They are distinguished by their big ears that are shaped like the continent of Africa., in contrast with the Asian Elephants whose ears are rounded and small.
 They are highly intelligent,  and they have a very large and highly convoluted neocortex a trait they share with humans, apes, and some dolphin species.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Daily Sketch Day 84 - Indian Elephants

Another popular zoo attraction is the elephant. So today's sketch is the Indian Elephant. Kids are fascinated with this creature, whose long trunk serves as both nose to breathe and fingers to grab objects.  I had an opportunity to animate elephants years ago, when I worked on Disney's Jungle Cubs TV series, a spin-off of their classic Jungle Book. Hathi was the name of the elephant character.  Dumbo was the other Disney elephant character that I love as a kid.  Drawing these creatures surely brings out the kid in me.