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33 Day Challenge: Days 15-21 of Places, Scenes, and Landscapes

March 4, 2024


1 sketchbook spread of a place, scene, or landscape

  • what:
    • 4 x 1min speed sketches (left), 1 bigger 5min sketch (right)
    • can use a reference photo (prefer to use my own life experiences, but random references are okay too)
    • no Instagram, only telling art friends and sharing here
  • why:
    • To  confidently capture the magic and feeling of the places I love, for the rest of my life (This is a skill I’ve pined for and admire in others’ work)
    • To loosen up my shapes and be expressive in a subject matter in which I tend to tighten up
    • To develop and strengthen my ability to
      • be expressive without making a mess
      • render people and places
      • interpret and simplify detailed settings

Day 15: Sunday, March 3rd, 2024: someone else’s mountain

My takeaways from day 15 are:

  • this was drawn from a reference by Cora Leach on Unsplash
  • using the thumbnails to explore different parts of the drawing, as opposed to trying to render the entire picture in under a minute each time, proves to be more helpful and less stressful
  • I’m very good at holding 9 pencils at once
  • I simply love landscapes. this piece brings me peace.
  • I’m still following my same basic process:
    1. identify the focal point
    2. identify the back, middle, and foregrounds
    3. sketch in those ^ main elements
    4. render back to front, big to small (light to dark for colored pencils, mixed for gouache)

Day 16: Monday, March 4th, 2024: grasses

My takeaways from day 16 are:

  • helpful process
    • pencil sketch for the first thumbnail
    • marker 3-value study for the second
    • worked out colors in the third and fourth
  • Originally the path at the bottom right was left blank, and I could feel my instincts prompting to color it in with yellow – but I was scared to overdo it! I wanted to be precious. it felt good to ultimately follow it – I love the result
  • I enjoy the result of coloring in little spots of background, as opposed to a wall of solid color (really hope this makes sense to my future self). Filling in with little spots leaves more negative space poking through, which I’m realizing I really love (sort of how the yellow path above has little bits of white where I was avoiding coloring over the rocks)
  • wish the distant mountains were a litttttttle smaller
  • love that the strokes make it look windblown

Day 17: Tuesday, March 5th, 2024: good boy

My takeaways from day 17 are:

  • I’m just really happy with it! I enjoy drawing mountains, grasses, and pointy-eared Stevie boy
  • I like the bolder blue color for the sky – it expresses the feeling of being here in the desert

Day 18: Wednesday, March 6th, 2024: barn in the setting sun

My takeaways from day 18 are:

  • drawn from reference by Ryan Manwiller on Unsplash
  • forgot to do a value study, and I felt it when I jumped too quickly to color!
  • love the simple marks for the flower bushes in the foreground, and that break up the shadow on the barn
  • love how the golden sun catches in the background

Day 19: Thursday, March 7th, 2024: Painting the f*cking ceiling

My takeaways from day 19 are:

  • painting ceilings is a special kind of hell
  • v frustrated with drawing full body characters. they look cartoony and I feel unsure of their clothing and faces and hair and posture, and how to draw them in the right spot. for instance, in this shot I’m painting around the vent with a brush, so I needed my hand and brush to land in a certain spot, but if I draw from the arm the posture is off; if I draw the body first I don’t land it in the right spot, etc. in all cases the faces look pretty silly but not in a good way
  • I do like how I simplified the scene and colors, though

Day 20: Friday, March 8th, 2024: Low-power pencil sketches

My takeaways from day 20 are:

Day 21: Saturday, March 9th, 2024: SKIPPED

  • but there’s a for sale sign in front of our house <3


  • I tried different and more colors this week; I really like all the colors that can be used for landscapes
  • for the thumbnails, it seems like the following is most helpful:
    • 1st thumbnail: pencil sketch contour shapes in fore, middle, and background
    • 2nd thumbnail: simple marker value study
    • 3rd + 4th thumbnails: work out colors
  • I seem to love drawing stevie, barns, grassy fields, farmhouses, shacks, and mountains
  • made peace with my first skip of the challenge <3

See other 33 day project posts:

Week 1, Days 1-7
Week 2, Days 8-14
Week 3, Days 15-21
Week 4, Days 22-28
Week 5, Days 29-33

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