Jessica in drawing

March 13, 2013

For my final drawing project in my (can you guess it?) drawing class, we had to choose a contemporary artist who we admired. Then, we analyzed why we admired their work so much; was it the materials they used, the subjects they drew, the quality of their brush strokes, their overall aesthetic, etc.?

I chose illustrator Mercedes Helnwein. I had the privilege of meeting her in LA a while back and photographing her studio. Ever since I saw this video of her for Lula Magazine, I’ve been a huge fan of her dark, moody work. I love her use of crosshatching and the anonymity of her compositions; like broken fairytales.

mercedes helnwein inspiration - drifter and the gypsy blog

For our final project, we had to create an original drawing of our own using our contemporary artist as our inspiration. Since I especially liked Mercede’s hatch-making and eerie setups, I used a photo of my own of model Jessica (from this photo shoot) and modeled it after Mercede’s style.

This drawing actually didn’t take me that long to finish… not nearly as long as this one, at least. It ended up coming out a bit more Dorothy from Wizard of Oz than Wednesday Addams-esque (the latter being the inspiration behind the original photo). Another one of my classmates said it reminded her of Laura Ingalls from Little House on the Prairie. So here’s to you, Dorothy, Wednesday Addams, Laura Ingalls, and of course, Mercedes Helnwein.

The final drawing, complete with steps…

jessica in drawing - drifter and the gypsy blog
jessica in drawing - drifter and the gypsy blog

I must say, I’m a bit sad to see my drawing class go by so fast. The projects for this class were much more open-ended than the last class and I think that’s why I enjoyed it so much. Plus, seeing your photographs take shape in the form of drawings, how cool is that? Next quarter at SCAD, I don’t have to take any drawing classes, but I think I may take a few elective drawing classes in the future!

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