Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Friday, 20 November 2009


This is the first of a little ink landscape that will be sold for 50p/£1 at my daughter's school's Christmas fair. I've been volunteered to draw 100 pictures for the first week of December so part of what I'll do will be these landscape types and the remainder will be along the lines of my children's drawings. The money raised will go to charity so I can't even complain about the workload.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009


Here I've drawn a quick sketch of an African elephant walking through shallow water in ink. When drawing living things I try and keep the sketch lively by rendering the marks quickly and without too much fuss. Of course with animals, being able to draw rapidly is often an essential requirement.

Ok, just a reminder that more of my work can be found on my website leightonnoyes.com. The work on this site is mainly my childeren's book work so please pop by and say hello.

Monday, 27 July 2009


Whilst messing around with ink late last night I happened to make this atmospheric drawing almost completely by accident. It's only a very small drawing (no more than four inches across) which I've decided looks too much like a landscape for me not to call it a landscape. It's ambiguous as to what it actually depicts but I think there are trees and water in there along with a silhouetted figure in the foreground.

I hope this demonstrates how effective just spending a couple of minutes pushing ink around on a piece of scrap paper can be.

Saturday, 13 June 2009


This watercolour drawing has been lifted from my sketchbook. I did this in August last year and it's a woman who came round for an aperitif when I was in France. She was always popping in for an aperitif but this is a big thing in France- sitting down half an hour before you eat to discuss food before eating the food and discussing the next aperitif and who's holding it and what the next meal will be and who's invited, and more importantly, who isn't.

It can all become a bit of a soap opera and is a source of disagreements and bad will.

Anyway, this lady was already 'aperitifed-up' before she came over and the unforgiving August sun that shines on the South, mixed with the alcohol, made her louder and more argumentative than usual. I don't think she was invited to the next one but she's French and does as she pleases so not getting an invite wouldn't necessarily have stopped her.

Friday, 15 May 2009


A fair while ago I went through a phase of drawing portraits just to keep my eye in whenever work was slow or non existant and this is a pencil drawing of Sylvester McCoy. I know what youre thinking here: 'Please, not another Dr Who!'

Sorry about this. I've always felt that one good way to learn to draw is by drawing the things you're really keen on and I've been a bit of a Dr Who anorak since I was about 5. And as a young man it was easier to get hold of pictures of Dr Who than it was to get hold of pictures of girls I liked. Sadly.

This drawing has been cropped because he was wearing a hat and that turned out to be a disaster. I'm ok with faces, more or less, but hats are a right pain. Especially straw ones.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009


This is the rough of the Beauty and the Beasts post I put up on 2nd May which I did in my little A5 sketchbook. After I'd done the initial rough, I decided bits and pieces needed changing or improving. With this in mind I did corrections on a separate piece of paper and stuck them over the parts I wasn't so keen on which you'll see if you look closely at the picture.

I also added extra little details to make the composition more pleasing and fill the space better. Once I started on the final drawing I continued to add further small detailing to improve the illustration and make it more interesting.

Wednesday, 6 May 2009


Here's another attempt at a foot drawing and this time I've added a Quink wash over the charcoal to get some tonal variation. Again, as with the previous foot drawing I posted, this is a fairly large piece of paper I'm working on to accommodate my fairly large feet.

The washes were applied by holding the paint brush between my toes. As before, very little control can be managed by doing this but that makes for a more interesting mark I think. I find it's quite refreshing to do a drawing like this just for fun with no pressure to get it right and to have no preconceived ideas as to how it'll turn out.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009


I must of done this around ten years ago and I'd completely forgotten about it until today when I saw one of my favourite actors ever, Patrick Troughton guest as a villain in an old episode of The Sweeney. So I fished the drawing out and thought it didn't look too shabby for something I did that length of time ago so I'm posting it.

Done in HB pencils, I think some of the drawing is a titchy bit crude here and there in comparison with the way I'd do it now but every drawing is a valuable learning process and that's why you should never throw any work away.

I've always liked Patrick's wistful pose in this drawing and I think he was supposed to be looking directly at you but I went wrong somewhere along the way. Y'know, as usual.

Saturday, 2 May 2009


The sole intention of this blog was to keep my children's book work separate from my other drawings but I've caved in a little bit and thought that maybe one or two wouldn't hurt from time to time, if only to add a big splash of colour.

I've always had a huge fascination with monsters but although I love the idea of them, I wouldn't want to be stuck in the middle of the woods with them. And I really wouldn't want to be eaten by them, having my leftovers left dangling in the branches of the trees for the birds to pick at. I just wouldn't fancy that at all.

Not that there would be any leftovers, I'd be a juicy bit of monster fodder- and far too tasty to waste.

Saturday, 18 April 2009


As much as I like the dark and the rain and an evening chill, I was just about ready for home when I'd finished these quick animal sketches. The best thing about the cold when drawing is that it promotes a faster way of working I think and these didn't take any longer than a few minutes each.

Tuesday, 14 April 2009


I stumbled across this little ink drawing today whilst flicking through an old sketchbook and realised it's better than a load of drawings I've spent hours labouring over. It's fairly bold and loose and would only have taken a short minute to do.

Like most everyone else who keeps one, my sketchbook is a sanctuary for small drawings like this. Sketches that would perhaps otherwise become lost and forgotten.

Saturday, 11 April 2009


It's not that I'd forgotten or forsaken this blog, it's just that I've been incredibly busy illustrating a new children's book series and too tired to maintain it for a while.

But in a break and having given this blog a check up, I thought it was high time to pop some colour back in its cheeks since it seems to have gone a little bit black and white.

The illustrator in me couldn't help but draw a line around these small watercolours of antarctic wildlife but since they're set against a plain white background I suppose they benefit from some sort of discreet definition.

Saturday, 17 January 2009


When I did this charcoal foot drawing at Maidstone college of Art in 1992 I was looked upon by some of my peers as a bit of a monkey (I know this from the noises they were making behind my back). But I wasn't after a refined drawing when I stuck my charcoal between my toes, I was looking to make marks that I couldn't when I drew with my hands. Because there's less control using the feet, the marks are just that little bit freer and it made me think about what makes for a good drawing in a completely new light.

The drawing itself is a large picture and I was able to walk around it and work on different areas as I drew, accidentally smudging other parts as I went.

Saturday, 10 January 2009


I had a friend once (look at me showing off) and when she's old I think she might look a smidge like this quick pen drawing I've done of an elderly lady.

I did this sketch in black Indian ink with my dippy pen, which lends itself to keeping the lines lively and loose. I tried not to allow the pen to rest anywhere on the paper for too long to give the drawing as much life as I could.