I will be honest with you guys, I started drawing as an escape from my 9-5 and I honestly could never have imagined having so many people on the journey with me. So THANK YOU a million trillion times! Whether it's a follow, a like or a comment, it all means I can share my work further and hopefully make an impact on someone :)
After reaching 100,000 followers on Instagram I wanted to do a little series that represented how I feel about all of this. And it only seemed right that it would be something to do with all of you guys. I mean it's so cool that people from all over the world not only follow but buy my artwork. That means a bit of me is in countries I haven't even been too! I'll never quite get over that!
I try to bring together my drawings and travel whenever I can so the Continent Series just made perfect sense. This is a little behind the scenes of how I drew this series. You can buy the Limited Edition prints of them here.
1. Grid lines and pencil sketches
Each Continent drawing started with a pencil grid to help keep everything symmetrical and in line. When I first started drawing I didn't really use grid lines and pencil outlines but with ones like this that require absolute precision, grid lines and sketches are very helpful.
Then I researched that particular Continent to compile ideas of landmarks, architecture and scenery in those countries. I even took a trip to my local library in Richmond Upon Thames to get some inspiration from travel guides and books.
Then I started planning out the composition of the piece, picking imagery that I felt represented that Continent and that was particularly recognisable. Below you can see the pencil sketch for the Europe drawing.
2. Inking the outline
Next I started going over the outline using my Pigma Micron Pen (I have included a link at the end of the post to where you can buy this product on Amazon in case you are interested in using it yourself). At this stage I sometimes changed the composition of the drawing depending on how I felt it was looking e.g. in the Australia one below you can see there were some bits of coral coming out of the skyscrapers that I didn't ink because I thought they might look a bit strange!
3. Shading and adding details
The final stage is where the drawing starts coming to life, its all in the details, my favourite part of illustrating. Depending on what I was working on, I sometimes made up techniques as I went along to capture the texture or detail, for example, I had never worked on something like the green mountains surrounding the Great Wall of China so I developed these sort of small tight randomly arranged curls to achieve that look. You can see this technique in the mountains of the South America and Asia drawings.
I really hope that I was able to connect with each and every one of you on this series. Our home, where we live, work and play, is a part of our identity and naturally we feel such immense pride about where we come from. I know I wasn't able to include every country in the drawings and for that I am truly sorry but trust me if I could I would! I would just be working on that for a while...
But anyway THANK YOU again for following my work. Maybe one day we will meet and can be more than just social media friends!
And lastly you can grab the pens I use to do the outline and details of these sketches here, hope it helps you on your sketching journey: