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Sans titre 119 from Denny Stoekenbroek

27 février 2018

This week, Denny Stoekenbroek unveils his technique and inspiration that lead him to draw his artwork “Sans titre 119”.

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It’s all about feelings…

I always have a reference photo for each drawing. Whether a picture is useful or not is pure instinctive, I see it in a second. The look and feeling of the overall image are more important than the characters I’m drawing. For example, the reference picture for this artwork is dark, dramatic, and mysterious. If I use a lot of black and fade the details, I think it strengthens these feelings.

"IN A LOT OF MY DRAWINGS, HAIR IS EVEN MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE EYES."

It’s always about the hair too. Since I draw portraits, I like to draw women because of their hair. It’s very determinative for somebody’s look and I love playing with it in my artworks. Sometimes I add abstract elements in the hair, and sometimes it looks more realistic.
In a lot of my drawings, hair is even more important than the eyes. In this one for example, you don’t even see her eyes.
I made a few portraits where eyes can’t be seen. Usually, when you look someone in the eyes, you know in what kind of mood he is. Without drawing the eyes, we can’t understand what the character is thinking about. We have to think about it even more to understand, and that’s what makes it interesting.

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… and simple details

To me, charcoal is a fantastic medium to work with. It’s a raw material but it can also add soft elements in my art. I can work with pencils, swipe with my fingers, use brushes, add water or acetone; they all produce a different effect. I like to overdraw contrasts so that even if you erase the grey part to only see the black and white part, you would still recognize what it is. 

Why do you paint in black and white?

I love to work in black and white. It gives more drama to the picture and it gives me the possibility to blend things a little. In this picture for example, just by using black instead of colors, you don’t exactly know where the hair ends and the clothes start, if I fade the details. It gives a little feeling of old blurry photos: you don’t see a lot of details but it’s enough to see a realistic picture of a girl. 

My artworks are never extremely detailed but I want to create realistic portraits or city views. It’s like the painting ‘(the) Girl with the pearl earring’ by Vermeer; it looks very detailed but if you look a little bit closer at the pearl you’ll see it’s actually 2 simple white paint strokes. It inspired my own work, as the artists Loui Jover, Casey Baugh, Julie Kraulis and Steph Morris do.

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Sans titre 119
7x7"

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