Protip for stylized shading and highlighting natural african hair: Think of the structure like a cloud.
This will make it easier to find a good starting point on where to place highlights and shadows in a stylized way.
On straight hair we usually imagine the hair parts as layered sheets of paper or ribbons in order to figure out where to place highlights. This doesn’t always work when it comes to african textured hair, and thus I’ve noticed it’s easier to just imagine the hair as a cloud shape - or a cloud shaped like hair.
Pop Culture Rendered in Pencil Shavings, with South Africa Artist @meghanmaconochie
For more of Meghan’s pencil shaving pop art, follow @meghanmaconochie on Instagram.
“I put so many hours into creating these works,” says Meghan Maconochie (@meghanmaconochie), a South African schoolteacher who creates textured images drawn from pop culture references, which she constructs from the shavings of colored pencils. Meghan’s process begins by hand-drawing an image onto paper or a card, which gives her a base to work on. Next, she applies a thin layer of shavings on the outer edges. “I then layer it up so it has more of a sculptural look to it,” she explains.
“Believe it or not, I sharpen all my pencils by hand,” she explains. “I have tried using an electric sharpener but the shavings end up being too fine and turn to dust pretty much.” Despite the time she invests in her artwork, the physical renderings are ephemeral. “I am experimenting with different fixatives to see if I can preserve the image,” she says. “Sadly, at the moment, I throw them away after photographing them.”
Meghan explains the pop culture references in her images, which she is aiming to produce on a daily basis for an entire year: “I like to create pieces that people can relate to and recognize. I very much create what inspires me that particular day or week, whether it be music, film, people or other artists.”
it makes me sad to hear some black people say they don’t like their skin color or hair texture. african-american parents need to teach their children how to love their melanin and embrace their beautiful kinky hair at a young age. raise them as the kings and queens they are meant to be!