2 Pencils, 2 Erasers

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Amazing Spider-Man #639, Page 4, Panels 4-5.
2010. Pencil on Marvel board, 11 x 17.25".

I feel like I haven't shared any useful information here in quite some time, so here's a quick tip that might help some of you with perspective (and help me feel better about my blog).

When composing an image that requires perspective (most often architecture and inorganic forms) I find that using 2 pencil/eraser "teams" is a great way to preserve my construction lines throughout the course of a drawing. When drawing the initial guidelines, I'll use a sharp, hard lead (most often an H), but once the basic structure has been established, I'll switch to a softer lead (anywhere from HB to 2B) to do the bulk of the rendering. This stage requires the most trial and error—erasing, in other words—for which I use a kneaded eraser. This soft, pliable putty works by lifting loose graphite particles with a minimum of friction. Because of this, lines from the softer lead will disappear, leaving the perspective grid intact. Once the piece has been inked, a harder eraser can be used to remove all traces of graphite (Maped's Epure is my favorite for the moment).


  1. I can't believe I never thought of this.

  2. what about bluline for the grid..?

  3. M.E. Walsh, I only started doing this last year—wish I had thought of it earlier.

    Andrea, I do that too, especially for more elaborate scenes. I'll have examples of that when I finally get around to my series on perspective.

  4. That was actually an incredibly useful bit of information! Thanks!


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