Sitting Bull in carbon pencil and white charcoal

After visiting New Mexico, my interest in the old west was revitalized. When I returned home I found a very old picture of Chief Sitting Bull online. Even though I’m more of a photographer than an artist I thought I’d experiment to see how well I could mimic the look of the B/W photo. I used tan toned paper to provide a starting point for his face. I used carbon pencils and white charcoal for the image and gray charcoal for the background. Overall I was pleased with the result. Let me know what you think.


This is really nice. I’ve never used carbon pencils, but they appear to go nicely with the white charcoal. Those feathers look so soft. I think it was a great idea to use the paper the way you did for the skin tones. Great job!

This was an experiment. I’ve not used this combination before. I first drew this with graphite pencils on white paper, but I couldn’t get a strong enough black/white contrast. I tried again using the carbon pencils. They allow deeper, richer blacks which contrast nicely with the white charcoal. My technique with the media can be improved. I learned a lot about what to do and how not to do it. Thanks for your encouragement and feedback.

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This is great. I love it

Thanks Denise. You’re always so encouraging. I appreciate it.

That’s awesome! All the textures came out really nice! Thank you for sharing! :grin: