May 1st, 2014


Designer Trev Stair recently posted a drawing of the legendary saxophonist John Coltrane. “When I get home from my day job as a creative director at a small ad agency, I try to fill much of my free time drawing. I keep a huge library of interesting photo references on my Dropbox, so I can access it via my iPhone or iPad anywhere I am. I draw from all kinds of photos, but some of my favorites are the ones Francis Wolff shot for Blue Note Records during 40s, 50s and 60s. It’s hard to get much cooler than jazz, and Wolff shot some of the coolest musicians around.

When I draw from photographs, looseness and abstraction are preferred over accurate reproduction. The more energy, the better. This drawing of John Coltrane was done in an 8.5 x 11 hardbound Epsilon series sketchbook with Pilot Parallel pens. The Parallel pens are a recent discovery and I have been having a lot of fun working with them. They are designed for calligraphy, but they give a lively unpredictable line that I have fallen in love with.

I started this drawing as I do any regular drawing. I sketched in the figure using black ink on white paper…I used a lot more black than I typically do. A liberal use of black often makes any drawing look good. The other thing that I think helps this drawing is that I usually do a light sketch in pencil before going in with ink. Recently, I have been trying to skip that step and just working directly in ink. It’s easier for a drawing to go wrong working like that, but when it works it usually look looser and more spontaneous. “ See more of Trev Stair’s drawings on his blog “Grand Allusions” here:

SURFACE: Epsilon Series – 100 lb – 150 gsm – White – Smooth Finish



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