When my first semester of my sophomore year was winding down at ISU it was a hectic time. I had decided that this year for Christmas I was going to draw and frame a drawing for my mom and my two grandmothers. I had my grandmothers' drawings done, but I still had my mother's to do. This probably wouldn't have been a problem except that it was now final exam week for the semester. I didn't want to leave working this drawing until I got home because then my mother might see me working on it. So I frantically tried getting it done between studying for finals. To save time I made an important decision. On all of my previous "photorealistic" drawings I had spent hours with the photo of the animal infront of me trying to match the outline of my drawing with the silouette of the animal with the photo. Everything was done completely freehand, and I never got the outline of the animal completely right.
This time however I decided to use my new light box to draw the outline of the animal. I printed out a photo of my cat on the computer and put it on my light box. Then I traced the outline of the animal and where his nose and eyes were and that was that. All of the details and coloring were done off the light box, completely by free-hand. So instead of taking two days worth of time to do the drawing which I really didn't have, I got the whole drawing done from start to finish in 5 hours. I hate the idea of being known as a "tracer" using the light box, but I assure you that 90% of the work was still done freehand. The drawing turned out great and my mom loved her present.
The rough pencil work was done on 80lb. medium surface Strathmore drawing paper with a .05mm mechanical pencil loaded with 5H lead. The pencil lines were darkened with 2B lead. The result was darkened and cleaned up with Paint Shop Pro 3 and printed on fax/copy paper. The printout was colored with Crayola and Sanford Prismacolor colored pencils and the inking was done with a Pigma Micron 05 pen. The lettering was done with Paint Shop Pro 7.02.
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