Inside the Sketchbook of Kayoon Anderson

Inside the Sketchbook of Kayoon Anderson

Kayoon Anderson is a figurative painter and Semi-finalist in the Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Calendar year. Below she contemplates the great importance of her sketchbook follow as a resource for establishing suggestions and attempting new techniques, even though also pondering the evolving romance an artist can have to their sketchbooks.



Kayoon Anderson Normally takes Us Via Her Sketchbook Practice

To be honest, maintaining a sketchbook has frequently felt like a bit of a chore. It is some thing I’ve been informed time and time yet again is vital to do, but I can under no circumstances recall to have 1 with me.

Having said that, I’m presently likely through a period of time of painting-planning (instead than painting-executing), and I’m realising that it can be very beneficial after all. My sketchbooks have come to be a area for me to visualise my thoughts by line and examination my hand at diverse ideas at the pre-portray phase.

My preparing procedure can be damaged down into various phases:

  • Observing figures from lifestyle, seeking at photographic and inventive references
  • Testing a composition applying sketchbooks and photoshop
  • Using photoshop to compile a closing painting reference


Observing Figures From Lifetime

I paint figures, and sketching from everyday living allows improve my knowing of the human type. Even if the finish goal isn’t to paint individuals naturalistically, I still want their bodies to be believable. Sketching from daily life is generally rapid, and the concentration is on instruction myself to capture sort properly.



Hunting at Other Artists Perform

I recently came throughout the do the job of the 20th century Korean painter Park Su-Geun and was completely blown absent by the very simple rendering of sorts, their calming excellent, and the over-all security of the is effective. I wished to have an understanding of how he realized these thoughts and felt the most immediate way to review them was to sketch them.



Likely Via Outdated Photos

I maintain albums of shots on my phone, in folders these kinds of as ‘painting inspo’, ‘interiors’, ‘colour inspo’ and ‘pattern’. Just about every now and then, anything will come up that I’d like to include into a painting, and the system of sketching aids me get a come to feel for it. These could be photos of folks or areas, but mostly it’s styles that I have occur across. For instance, I’ve been familiarising myself with the styles in the doors of standard Korean hanok buildings. These days I’ve also been fascinated by the layouts of Korean bojagi – standard embroidered wrapping cloths produced from a patchwork of scrap fabrics. Like the doors of hanok properties, they are combos of horizontals and verticals that produce beautifully harmonious styles. I have been screening out my personal bojagi models in a sketchbook.


All in all, the sketchbook is a position for me to lay out and play about with all these minor thoughts in straightforward line, seeing what I gravitate toward most, and start out forming basic compositional drawings for paintings. Tracing paper is superb for this – I can attract something on the web site, overlay sample applying tracing paper, and experiment with wherever the impression edges must be, all on distinctive levels.



For the following phase of composition on the other hand, I use digital resources this kind of as Photoshop. I’ll scan drawings of figures and styles from the sketchbook and combine them alongside with flat shapes drawn in Photoshop to generate a a lot more comprehensive composition. At the end, I am remaining with ‘the image’ (sometimes also colored on Photoshop) on which my painting is primarily based. This method is arguably the most important aspect of my portray planning, reworking the early ideas from my sketchbook into a useable reference image for painting. It is a way to whittle down loads of photographs from a number of resources till I get there at ‘the image’ to paint with.


On celebration, I skip the complete sketchbook method and soar straight into Photoshop, digitally collaging images in its place. It relies upon on the requires of the closing painting – sometimes it requires a drawn-out sketchbook improvement time period, and in some cases it will come collectively in fifty percent an hour on the personal computer and that’s that.


I have a several sketchbooks dotted close to my studio and property. All are started out but only a single is concluded. There is no chronology or logic to them – I’ll discover a person that I began many years back and continue on its pages. They also range in appear – simple, lined, smaller or major. Most of my sketchbooks have been bought on getaway (potentially since I often neglect to take 1 with me when I travel) and end up being filled in a prolonged time after. My latest sketchbooks are from Korea and Italy.


I consider not to position way too a lot significance on them as objects… they’re not polished issues but just a area to promptly visualise ideas that notify afterwards operates. When researching architecture, the system of sketching was taught as an essential strategy of ideating and quickly communicating. While I feel the great importance of sketching can be overstated, it no doubt has a various which means and significance to diverse artists.


Frequently months go by without having sketching, but you just know that one particular evening when you just can’t slumber, an strategy for a portray will spark in your head and you urgently have to get it on paper before you neglect it. This took place to me the other night so I’m now striving to have a sketchbook at the completely ready at all instances.



For that identical explanation, I generally have a mechanical pencil nearby too. A mechanical pencil on smooth paper has an immediacy and a cleanness to it which, in my head, just can’t be crushed. Furthermore, you really don’t at any time need a pencil sharpener!



By means of the course of action of writing this, I’m realising that my sketchbook apply may well be extra critical to me than I formerly gave it credit for. Sketchbooks are normally the starting up factors guiding finished paintings. They are a terrific location to iterate, and at times fail, in the pursuit of new ideas. They are the mind-maps in the history that never (usually) get witnessed.


About Kayoon Anderson

Kayoon was born in Seoul, South Korea in 1997. She examined architecture at the College of Cambridge and portrait portray at Heatherley College of Artwork. She presently works as a figurative painter in London and looks to Korean artwork as influences in her exercise.

Observe Kayoon on Instagram

Visit Kayoon’s web-site



Even further Examining

Inside of the Sketchbook of Sarah Dyer

The Romance Between the Artist and Their Elements

Inside of the Sketchbook of Jessica Jane Charleston

Producing a Every day Drawing Follow With the Royal Drawing Faculty


Store Sketchbooks on


Clare McNamara

As Web site Editor, Clare oversees content material for the blog, manages the publishing program and contributes routinely with functions, evaluations and interviews. With a track record in high-quality arts, her practices are illustration, graphic design, video and tunes.