Inktober Sketching – Tokyo and Italy

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I recently ran one of my free live workshops – Inktober Sketching: Tokyo and Italy. This was a line and wash workshop where I ran through all my steps to draw from complex reference photos to create a unique illustration that preserves much of the important details.

Inktober is one of many art challenges that can help you to draw and paint consistently. I sketch fairly often in inks, especially when I’m outside and on the go. It’s so easy to pick up a pen and draw into a sketchbook.

Check out my free live workshop below:

Live #14.5 – Inktober Sketchbook Tour, My $10 DIY sketchbook, and Sketching Demonstrations
Inktober Sketching - Tokyo and Italy
Florence – Line and Wash sketch – 1/8th sheet.

This Florence scene was fun and challenging at the same time. There was a lot of detail in the rooftops, I took a small section and repeated their basic shapes. I was careful with preserving the orange for the roofs. Added some cooler shadows on the second wash to the right side of the buildings.

Many parts of the buildings below the cathedral can be improvised and repeated, especially in the background areas, but I made sure to add more detail and to define the shapes of the buildings more in the foreground. Remember, we are trying to get an impression of the scene, not an exact depiction!

Inktober Sketching - Tokyo and Italy
Asakusa (Tokyo), Line and Wash sketch – 1/8th sheet.

I liked how this one turned out, especially the pagoda on the left with the warm colors and light coming through the openings. Makes me inspired to try some other similar scenes. I did this one fairly quickly, letting the paints run together for the buildings but making sure to keep the wooden support beams that orange/red color.

I think the lighter areas behind the orange pillars of the left pagoda worked amazingly well. Even leaving the shirt of one of the figures white creates an area of interest where the eye wants to move to and examine.

The constant play of light and dark is something I really try to focus on with my work – exaggerating this effect to tell my own story from a reference photo is something I’ve had a lot of fun doing. Often when we are reducing details from a drawing, we need to create other areas of interest. That can be achieved through the use of color (complementaries), tone, or expressive brush strokes.

I hope you enjoyed reading my thought process on this special Inktober Sketching: Tokyo and Italy workshop. Let me know what you think by commenting below.

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