Behind the Scenes: Hogwarts

This piece has been a long time coming!

My thoughts behind that is two-fold: first, I’ve wanted to draw the Hogwarts castle for a really, really long time. And second, this drawing has been on my shelf as a commission for a YEAR.

Now I HATE making anyone wait for anything, especially an entire year. But this one was delayed for a lot of reasons: finding the right reference image and then having it sent to me the day before my phone decided to lose EVERYTHING on it, not being able to find the perfect reference image again, me selling and buying a house, and then still not being able to find the right image again. But, it was found and I had the drawing in hand ready for delivery less than a week later.

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Title: Hogwarts

Size:  8×10

Medium: Graphite pencil and white ink gel pen on acid free paper

Purpose: My friend Sarah bought the gift certificate that I donated for our church’s 2017 short term missions auction, and this is what she chose for me to draw.

Thoughts on this piece: I went into the drawing completely terrified. The reference image that was chosen had a lot of complex pieces to it, from the night sky to the light beams and tiny little windows on the castle. The composition was fantastic, but it didn’t translate well to an 8×10 piece, so I had to rework it. Once I got over all of those challenges, the drawing went along really well! I think having come off of the Drawing a Day Challenge not too long ago really helped with that 🙂

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Favorite parts: I really love the light beams coming up behind the castle, as well as how the lit windows all look. I’ve always wanted to draw Hogwarts, but never had I even considered doing it at night and I am really excited with how it turned out!

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Least favorite parts: The rocks the castle are on bother me, but when I added more detail to them, I felt like it was taking away from the castle. Taking away more detail from the rocks made the castle look like it was floating on a cloud. This is the best balance between low and high detail that I could get, but it still feels off to me.

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Fun tidbits: I think this is the third original of mine that now lives in Sarah’s house!

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Product availability: The original is unavailable, but prints are available in my Etsy shop here.

 

If you won a certificate for a drawing, what would you want it to be of?

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Throwback Thursday: The Well

***This post originally published on January 1, 2015***

Here’s a piece from a couple years ago…

Title: The Well

Size: I think it’s 11″ x 14″

Medium: Graphite on paper

When: Between April and June of 2012

Time to complete: I don’t remember; probably between 10 and 15 hours

Purpose: My friend Sarah won the drawing certificate that year in our church’s annual mission’s auction. You can see the winning pieces from the other year’s certificates here.

Thought process: It was very straight forward; Sarah pretty much knew what she wanted, so I just had to draw!

Problems I encountered: Sarah wanted sun beams to come through the tree, and that was pretty tricky to accomplish. Getting a good contrast between dark and light was hard in this drawing as well!

Fun tidbits: The Prinzi’s are great friends of ours, so I included a little inscription on the back of the drawing

This is the first piece I’ve done for Sarah and her family. The house drawing is also theirs, and I’m currently working on a painting for them as well!

Favorite part: I really like how the tree leaves turned out!

Least favorite part: Getting the grape vines and leaves to stand out enough, yet not overpower the well was tricky. I’m still not satisfied with how they turned out!

Product availability: Prints are available in my Etsy shop here.

What would you choose as subject matter for a drawing?

Throwback Thursday: The Prinzi House

Here’s this week’s Throwback Thursday piece!

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Title: Untitled (The Prinzi House)

Medium: Graphite on paper

Size: 11″ x 14″

When: Late summer/early fall 2013

Purpose: Commissioned by the Shermans

Time to complete: Actual drawing time was 2 weeks; there was a lot of planning and waiting before I could start drawing.

History: This was commissioned by some friends of ours after they won my certificate in our church’s 2013 short term missions auction (see the 2014 piece here!). They were so excited they won, and instead of having me do a drawing for them, they wanted me to draw a mutual friend’s new house that was in the process of being built. This house process had been a huge, stressful ordeal for the friend’s family, and they wanted to do something really special for them as a housewarming gift.

Thought process: This piece was pretty straight forward. We knew we wanted the front of the house, make it sunny with a few happy clouds, and remove the neighboring houses from view in the picture.

Problems I encountered: This piece took a long time to get a concept for. We had to wait for the house to be built, get windows and doors installed, siding put on, roof completed…I worked on the drawing bit by bit, and thankfully my husband works a few minutes away from the house; I sent him over to the house multiple times to get pictures of progress so I could keep working!

Getting the different shades of gray were hard. When I took the digital photos and edited them into gray scale, the sky and siding colors blended in. I had to push the sky a little darker and the siding a little lighter than it should be in order for it to be defined enough.

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The windows were a pain as well. All those little lines on the windows were so hard to keep straight and equal width! I’m so thankful for my eraser pencil; I think that’s the only thing that kept me sane while finishing the windows up.

Favorite part: Handing it over to our friends during their housewarming party was the highlight! Seeing their excitement and then having them hang it up right then was just an amazing feeling. They worked so hard to get this house done, and had so many bumps in the road during this journey that having something to commemorate the experience was just awesome.

Lease favorite part: I don’t know if I have a least favorite part. That’s a nice change of pace!

 

Have you ever had a special photograph or drawing done of your house?