INKTOBER 2018 – DAYS 13 TO 19

This week was a funny one, not funny ha ha, but one of those weeks were you realise how unforgiving Traditional Inking is.

I’ll talk a bit more about all of this in a moment, but first, here’s the Drawings I did from Days 13 to 19 of Inktober 2018 :)

DAYS 13 TO 19


DAYS 13 TO 19



Animals are always more fun to draw than humans, as you can ‘make mistakes‘ and get away with it lol Can’t really do that with people, as even the slightest error sticks out like a sore thumb to the human eye. So I enjoyed the animals, and I enjoyed capturing the lilSOPHIE‘S too; turning My Photos into her was so much fun :)

I learnt a lot this week as well, such as

  • Different sized Fine liners behave Differently
  • Sketches have more Feel and Energy than the finished Ink Drawing
  • It’s not easy to resketch a previous sketch
  • Working Small is a wise decision when doing an Art Challenge
  • I’m still doing my Pencil Lines too Dark/Heavy
  • Squinting works really well inking
  • Ink is more Impactful than Pencils which makes it great for Realistic work
  • Drawing Hair with Ink is the same as Pencils … it’s all about the stroke
  • Black Ink has a Different Shade of Black between manufacturers

That’s just a few things, I talk about them all in the video below, but for this blog post, I’m going to focus on how I’ve noticed the Ink Drawing Loses a lot of the Energy of the underlying Pencil Sketch.

YouTube player


Pencil seems to be more Organic, Exciting and Energetic than Ink.

To me, a Pencil Drawing is like Sculpting, you can get in there and move things about, erasing bits here, blending bits there; it’s a very playful way to Find the Feel of a Drawing.

While inking, it’s more like following a set of instructions, very strict, unforgiving and almost intimidating at times. The Pencil Lines act as the instructions for the ink to follow, but no matter how closely I tried to stay on track, the ink always seems to lose a lot of the feel.

I’m wondering if this is the same if you go straight into the inking phase … !OWW! Mini Ahha moment! … next week, I will try 7 lilSOPHIE‘s without using any pencils :) This will be an experiment – can I get more energy into my ink lines by bypassing the pencils? I suspect this will make them look very messy, but maybe the Messiness will add more Fun and Feeling into the Ink Drawing :)


At the moment, I personally prefer working with Pencil vs Ink, and can’t see that changing in the future. However, Inks are so unique that I feel they’re good teachers and something we should all play around with from time to time. Like they highlight the importance of being wise with the lines you place down.

In the two examples, you can see the Reference Photo, my original Pencil Sketch, and the finished Ink Drawing.

Inking seems to be about Confidence and Belief, something I don’t have just yet to be able to pull off the long sweeping sexy lines, if you look at the two examples above, you can see how lilSOPHIE’s bum isn’t as curvy as it could be, you can see where I’ve drawn the ink line in stages. This is due to my lack of confidence with the fine liner, and not working from my Elbow enough, I’m finding it hard to get the balance between being free with my inks, while still following the pencil line.

If I was to ink on top of this original Pencil Sketch, I think the inks would look a bit better, but I opted instead to keep the original Pencil Sketch, so that after Inktober 2018, I can scan them into the computer and digitally ink over them.


This is something else, with Traditional Inking it’s so final. With digital, it’s the same as Traditional, in terms of look and feel of drawing, but you have the UNDO button. The Undo button brings back some of the Sculpting Feel I miss from Pencil Drawing, I can place a line down and if it’s not feeling right, just undo it.

Digital allows me to be more Confident as I can throw a long sweeping line down, and if it doesn’t work, undo, undo, undo lol

You could say this is lazy, but it allows for a more pleasant, fun, drawing experience, and I believe Fun is what Drawing is all about. So the Strictness of Traditional Inking takes away some of the Fun for me, but than I do believe it’s a confidence thing.

If I keep practicing, in a year or two I would be a lot more confident and so this could bring back the fun, but I’m not really 100% sure, as I see lots of artists online who are advanced Traditional Inkers, and even they say, the Pencil Sketch normally Feels more Alive in terms of Pencil vs Ink.


So that’s basically what I learnt his week. In a nutshell, Traditional Inking is Hard. It looks so much more impactful than Pencil, thanks to it’s high contrast of black and white, which is amazing for doing Realistic Work, but so far, it seems to lack the energy of Pencils when drawing from Imagination.

I feel I would get more energy by working Digitally, due to the undo button, but the thing is, I can see how rewarding the unforgiving nature of traditional inking could be; it feels like an art skill that after years of practice, would be one of the most satisfying art disciplines.

I’m excited for next week now, I’m going to try 7 lilSOPHIE‘s with nothing but ink, no pencil stage … straight to the inks! Not sure how this will work out, but I’m curious to see, think I’ll base her off some photos from my Inspirational Models :) As for the other 7 drawings, I’m not sure. Maybe 7 female videogame characters? Or, I may try to find 7 Thundercats again, I really want to draw the Thundercats in with Ink.

So that’s it for this week, a week of realising just how Different Inking is to Pencils, which is funny, because after Days 1 to 5, I said how similar they were lol I guess Inking is a Paradox, it’s both Similar and Totally Different to Pencils at the same time :)



Anatole France