Batman 52 by tydesign



Artist’s Notes

After some scanner snafus, I’m able to post this. So without further ado, on to the commentary…

In this sketch, I tried to push myself with the pose and foreshortening, keeping in mind the things I learned watching Jim Lee draw:

  1. Torso and pelvis. Jim starts with the torso and pelvis because it leads to dynamic poses. Essentially the core leads to the structure of the figure. How many of us start with an oval head and then draw the rest of the figure’s wireframe? I did.
  2. Contrapposto. Italian term meaning ‘counterpose’.
  3. Break the 4th plane.

How successful was I? You be the judge. I’m open to feedback. I see the faults in my own work and tend to focus on those, but I’ll share what I did well and what I could improve upon.


I feel that I’ve grown since the first challenge sketch, especially in the area of technique and tools:

  • Use Pilot Soft Blue pencil to get my rough figures down with the entire composition.
  • Erase areas as needed. Don’t leave so much of the blue lines, tougher to erase blue lines in between final graphite ones.
  • Use Pentel .3 Mech Pencil to do finishing pencils. Try not to press down too hard. HB lead is dark enough. However, .3 might be too thin and .5 still a bit thick for some finer details. I’ll be giving a .4 a try and soon as it comes in.

Batman 52 DiagramComposition

I did a better job taking in Jim Lee’s advice for dynamic poses. In fact, I think I need to push it even more and here’s how I might do that:

  • Do more exploratory thumbnails of potential composition. By only having one composition idea, I erased so often and with such force that some areas of the bristol paper were a bit raw. In these areas, the lead was apt to smudge and the pencil felt like it was dragging on the paper.
  • Consider the entire composition and not just the figures. There is no environment, which is fine for a figure study, but not for a final drawing. I would like to push myself more to consider the entire composition to develop an ability to go from script to page.
  • Use perspective to determine the relationship of key elements in space. I drew Batman first (blue lines) then Joker then Batarrang. I essentially ‘eyeballed’ it, but feel that everything feels a bit at the same depth level (Z-direction). Again, if I planned the composition better to include an environment, I think the overall sketch might feel better.

Comic Book Sketching

I did a better job in this sketch using more crosshatching to develop tones. I did get ‘lost’ in a few areas and this will come when I can improve:

  • Anatomical knowledge. By this I mean knowing how to draw them and NOT medical names. This involves knowing how the muscles attach to the bones/joints, how they lay on top of/next to each other, and what happens when one is stretched and the other pulled. Point counterpoint. Contrappossto.

Sketch Tools

  • Pilot Color Eno Mechanical Pencil – 0.7 mm – Soft Blue Body – Soft Blue Lead
  • Pentel .3 Graph Gear 1000™ Mechanical Drafting Pencil, HB Lead
  • Paper Mate Tuff Stuff Eraser Stick
  • STAEDTLER 526 B209 Mars Rasoplast Black Edition Eraser
  • Strathmore 300 Series Bristol Board Pads
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