Sketching – Mike Leonard Inspired Work

For my FMP I would like to produce a collection of images which have been inspired by the work of Mike Leonard.

His work is just incredible and it is the composition he uses which I am most attracted to. The people in his photos are always doing something. They aren’t just rendered as being still and posing but they are in motion.
IMG_1214 This is one of my favourite paintings by Leonard. I like the soft colours he uses and that there is a lot of emotion emanating from the figure in his image. The detail is amazing and hyper realistic art is what I am attracted to the most.

After having a tutorial with Steve, we discussed another approach to my work. Steve said that he really likes my drawings and have I not considered sketches for my FMP instead of painting. I want my FMP to have an impact and I don’t know if sketches are as impactful as paintings.

Steve advised me to do some sketches in a similar style to Leonard to see what I thought.

For my first sketch I simply copied from a favourite piece from Mike Leonard’s collection and this is the image above.


Sketching above everything else is actually my favourite medium to use. I find it comes more natural to me than anything else. I feel more confident with a pencil than a paint brush. I feel I have developed a technique which works and that is effective.

So using techniques and skills which I have developed from doing the life art classes, I created a replica of this painting with a HB pencil. I started with the head to determine the proportions of the body as whole. I worked through the image and drew the figure out before I began shading.
I also use a blender. They really are so effective and also can be time saving too. I find that a blender gives a soft effect than just blending in pencil using my finger.

I also make sure I always use pencils that have rubbers on the end. I rub out pencil in certain areas so that it gives the effect of light.
Where the areas are much darker I put a lot pressure down to make the area darker and give the sense of shadow. I find that this also helps with giving the idea of realism. This is what I am wanting to achieve. Especially with using pencil.


I am really pleased with how this sketch has turned out.

I will now use my own visual references to create some more sketches and see how I feel about using this for my FMP instead of paints.


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