At dusk-new ballpoint pen drawing

Finally finished my first garden drawing. This will be included in a series of artworks for rent, which service the local gallery I’ve been working with has recently launched. Hope our clients will like this piece! :blush:

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Hello Maki,
It seems impossible not to like this piece. I may be biased because I love cats but this is one of my favorite drawings to date. One can see the cat is relaxed but interested by something to her left (yes, I think it must be a little girl cat). The garden is beautiful and the path draws our eye forward into the garden. I like where you placed the cat and that it is a black cat. It anchors the focal point well, but the path invites to meander around. Great job (as always).
Patricia.

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I love the detail in this piece and the use of pure black in the foreground which creates a great illusion of distance. The shadows you’ve created on the pathway are genius and almost give it a 3rd dimension. Visually, it’s so well balanced and lots to look at. Great work! :grinning:

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As usual, great work. Love it.

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Absolutely stunning! I had no idea a ballpoint pen drawing could be so beautiful.

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@Maki I can’t believe that’s ballpoint pen! You must have extreme patience and a steady hand! I’m sure you’re clients will LOVE it! Jesus loves you!!!

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Love the level of detail and the overall execution—really just incredible from the cross hatching in the flowers to the very nice way you did the clouds. Was this a gel ball point? Why did you choose a ballpoint over a fountain pen? Thanks for sharing this!

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Hi Patricia, thank you so much for your comment. Your comments are always full of love for cats so I love reading them so much. Your words “little girl cat” melted my heart because there is actually one little black girl cat whom I have seen walking in my neighborhood with her owner a couple of times. At first, I saw them from a distance and I thought the owner was walking his dog, but when they came closer to us, it was actually a little black cat walking so hard with her short legs. She was so , so cute that I could not stop giggling looking at her. The cat’s name is Komachi and she’s very friendly. She looks exactly like this little girl cat in my drawing :blush: :cat: :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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Hi Janet, thank you so much for your comment. Your feedback sounds almost like Matt’s critique. I’m very glad that you mention the balance of this piece. That’s exactly the point which took me so much time thinking about because in this piece I deviated greatly from the photo reference. This is the starting point of this drawing:

And at this point, I had no idea exactly how I would complete this piece. Originally I was not going to add the shadows on the path, but while the plant shading was progressing, I had a hunch that this piece would be too flat because the whole plant parts are basically darkest dark plus mid- and darker grey only and lack adequate level of values variation. You can see that from this piece a few steps before the final one:

In a nutshell, I thought that this piece lacked drama. I then thought about how I could add some atmosphere, and decided to add the black leaves in the foreground, the shadows on the path, and very importantly, more lines on the sky because the long shadows indicate that this is an early evening scene, so I needed to darken the sky. Yes, I actually decided that this was a scene at dusk after I drew the shadows! Furthermore, to tell you the truth, I decided the shape of the shadows first and added the plants afterwards too. The whole trial and error took me so much time…this is a small piece, i.e. only B5, but I needed to spend 17 days to complete the work :sweat_smile: But I am sure that I learned a lot about garden drawing from this experience! :wink:

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Hi Denise, thank you so much for your kind comment! :wink: :blush: :cat:

Hello Anne, thank you so much for your lovely words. Glad to know that you find a ballpoint pen drawing interesting. I recommend you try checking pinterest or instagram using “ballpoint pen art” as a key word. You will find many, many incredible pieces! :wink: :+1: :cat:

Hi, thank you so much for your kind comment! Yes, a ballpoint pen drawing requires so much patience indeed! And thank you for mentioning the steady hand. That is so true especially when you want to express constant mid-tones with a ballpoint pen. :cat: :wink: :smiley:

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Hi David, thank you so much for your lovely comment! My choice of ballpoint pen as my current art medium is directly influenced by a Japanese artist Shohei Otomo.

At first I was wondering if he used some ink applications, not only a pen, to produce that really smooth grey gradations of human skins. But as the video introduced in the above article shows, he doesn’t…he does all the grey parts using incredibly diligent hatching only. This is possible because he uses a ballpoint pen. In particular, with the brand he uses, it’s zebra rubber 80, an 80 JPY ballpoint pen you used to see quite often at bank counters in Japan, you can readily draw grey lines, not black ones. Matt mentions this particular characteristics of ballpoint pen in one of his critiques of my drawing, at around 10:39. I was lucky that I bumped into Shohei’s works while I was thinking about which gadgets I should buy for my new attempt at pen drawings(before that, I used soft pastels for my drawings). I checked some fountain pens of course, and some popular fine liner pens were also in my potential shopping list, but I ended up buying only Shohei’s ballpoint pens because I did not see the necessity of getting anything else once I saw Shohei being able to draw anything like that with a ballpoint pen. I understood that it would be a question of how to utilize the gadget of your choice to its full potential.
Hope I have answered your questions sufficiently! :cat: :upside_down_face: :+1:

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Thank you for taking the time to show the metamorphosis of your project. I hadn’t realised it was that small size, in which case, I’m even more in awe of the detail and story you have created.

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【20 Apr '22 update】
I have just completed the making video of this work! :smiley: :cat: :+1:

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Wow! So good. So inspiring! I love the light in this pic

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Hi Smiley500, thank you so much for your kind words! :smiley: :cat: :+1:

Very nice, I really love black&white work and this one is really great, so detailed! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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Hi Lolita, thank you so much for your lovely comment. So glad to know that you like this piece! :blush: :laughing: :cat:

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Really beautiful drawing.

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