Breaking Charcoal

I think I spent more time sharpening and breaking charcoal pencils today that I did actually drawing.

Quick advice here, if you like working with Conte A Paris charcoal pencils I would suggest never to buy anything softer than B. I have a bunch of 2B and 3B from Conte and every time I try to sharpen them I just turn the whole pencil int wood shards. This is because 9 times out of 10 the charcoal is broken to bits inside the pencil.

Sigh, anyway, I’m loving how Buffy is turning out so far and I’m taking my time so I don’t screw it up. I’ve rushed drawings many times and ended up messing up what started wonderfully.

Buffy the vampire slayer drawing

Previous Buffy Drawing Posts


The normal 15 minute warm-up in graphite.


One Minute Gestures

I’ve done the one minute gestures exercise from the The Natural Way to Draw book so many times and posted it so many times that I don’t feel as though I need to write much about it. Although, this session kinda sucked. My focus was off and most of my drawings came out very clunky.

What went well, what was awesome! Celebrate It!

Buffy drawing is looking great!

What needs work? What did you learn?

Stop breaking charcoal and creating a pile of wood shards in the trash can. Also figure out why my gestures sucked today.

How am I going to Optimize moving forward?

Only by Conte A Paris 1710 B’s.

Session Details

  • Session: 2865
  • Work: 1753
  • Width: 12"
  • Height: 18"
  • Medium: Graphite, Charcoal
  • Location: Home
  • Art Time: 3
  • Creative Time:



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Christopher Beaven

Christopher Beaven

I am an Artist and a programmer currently living in the amazing state of Washington. I have a passion for art, but I'm stubborn as hell with it. My day is complete only when I do some piece of art each day, no matter how small. "There was a dream that was Rome. You could only whisper it. Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish, it was so fragile."

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