Monday, January 6, 2014

Native Californians

Prismacolor colored pencil on Strathmore Bristol vellum, 5" x 7"

On a day when much of the country is suffering sub-zero temperatures, I'm happy to be a Californian. I'm not a native Californian, however, like the beautiful Haas avocado. Fun fact: Did you know that every single Haas avocado in the world can be traced back to a single mother tree in La Habra Heights, California? (You can read about it here.)

Every time I cut an avocado open, I am amazed by the contrast between the creamy, smooth flesh inside and the dark, bumpy skin, which gives it its nickname, "alligator pear". And that beautiful pit that looks like polished wood: haven't we all taken one of those pits and balanced it on the rim of a jar with toothpicks to grow an avocado plant? If you haven't, you should! Here's how.

This was really fun to draw. I experimented with that bumpy skin as I went (I was too lazy to scan these WIP shots, they're just quick pics at my drawing table, so the lighting is very uneven.):

And then I cut it open and finished the drawing of the inside:

You may have noticed that I moved the two images a little closer in the final file at the top of the post—I never draw digitally, but I do love Photoshop for cropping and formatting like that!

On another topic, I'm working on setting up a separate blog for my drawings from the weekly Life Drawing meet-up I've been attending. (It will be linked to this one.) The drawings of nudes just seem a tad incongruous among my usual subjects, so we'll see how this works out. I'll let you know when it's up and running!


  1. Amazing what you can do with pencils! Looks so realistic!! Happy 2014! I look forward to seeing more of your work this year.

  2. So beautiful and so impressive how you were able to convey the bumpy avocado skin with your pencils. I love all the subtle colors you've added in there. Enjoying your blog!