Pen and Ink Drawings (Inktober)

Started by Jake Parker in 2009, Inktober was a way to improve his skills, forcing himself to practise drawing something daily. With the help of Twitter and Instagram, artists from all over the world, amateur and all, participate every October by tagging their works. Every year there is a new prompt list that artists can follow to sketch everyday.

What are Pen and Ink drawings?

Simply put, they are drawings that are done by tools that usually use ink, linear drawings and doodles.

Common Techniques:
Hatching: drawing lines in a row to create shadows, more concentrated for darker areas.
Cross Hatching: done with crisscrossing lines similar to hatching.
Scumbling: short squiggly lines done in a circular motion.
Contour Hatching: this technique follows the “contour of the object” to match the shape.
Stippling: using dots to create shadow, the more concentrated the dots the darker the shadow or stronger the outline.

Many factors affect drawings such as the thickness of the nib, the pressure you put on the drawing tool, and the composition of the tool.
For example, in fashion, while making flat drawings or technical drawings by hand, there are set pen-thicknesses you use to indicate stitch lines, garment openings (pockets and neckholes) and minor details.
In calligraphy; the amount of force you put on your fountain pen affects the outcome, and can change your font.
Sometimes artists use waterproof pens so that if they are going over the drawing with watercolour, the ink won’t run.

The possibilities of pen to paper are endless and even the slight change of technique or tool can result in major changes. So next time you see a pen and ink drawing, check out how many of these techniques the artist has used.