Panda Bears Drawing Assignment

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Today I would like to tell you about one of my assignments which is very special for me because it was my first project I fulfilled independently as a freelancer. It was a panda drawing project.


A teacher from the USA William Cunningham was looking for an artist to create a panda mascot for his classroom. He posted his request on DeviantArt website where I was one of the whole bunch of artists and illustrators willing to get this job. At that time I worked as an artist and illustrator for a web design company but I needed extra earnings, that’s why I visited DeviantART from time to time to check out whether there were interesting project over which I could work evenings and nights. Luckily, I have a rich portfolio containing quite a number of interesting works. And I was chosen by William for this panda mascot project.


William Cunningham had a rather funny and appealing to children idea to create a classroom mascot representing a cute panda character wearing a hoodie and socks. And this was my initial sketch of the mascot which the client accepted at once.

panda bear initial sketch

After that I proceeded with a raster (pixel based) panda image to show how the mascot will look like in color.

panda bear raster image by Igor Lukyanov

And eventually I created the vector image of the panda which looks somewhat smoother in comparison with the raster one.

panda mascot by Igor Lukyanov

The client was happy and that was when I realized that working as a freelancer artist and illustrator could give me more freedom in choosing interesting projects, communicating with clients and setting price for my illustration job. Furthermore, William Cunningham proved to be a very decent person. He was so supportive and patient that I had very positive feelings about possibility of starting my freelance career. I was also impressed how this guy was interested in making his teaching process fascinating in every possible way. He is willing to invest his own money in something that we would think is auxiliary in the educational process. However, those minor auxiliaries play a very important role of mortar which glues together every piece of knowledge we acquire from our teachers and holds them tight in our memory, for our brain is created to store much longer those things which we cognize “to the accompaniment” of positive or negative emotions. Teachers are intended to teach us as much effectively as possible and evoking positive feelings is one of the most efficient methods to catalyze the process of knowledge acquisition. What does a child need to have positive feelings? Well, much less than an adult needs… Just a fascinating game to play. I hope that this little panda character will help William to create the environment conducive to learning and imagination development through a game in his classroom.


The panda mascot project being accomplished, I still had this drawing aftertaste and I wanted to draw something interesting instead of those boring assignments I often got to do for the web design company I worked for. I was still “panda-minded” and used to make doodles of little panda bears when testing my new brush pen. Some of those sketches turned to be quite nice and I want to show you a couple of doodles.

panda doodle

panda doodle 2

I was happy when William got back to me with another project for his classroom. He wanted to make visual improvements to the scrolling flash icons on his website. There were icons linked to various pages of the website. The icons were represented by a dozen of ugly worms with dialogue balloons containing links. So I suggested replacing the unattractive worms with…pandas. I want to show you how I drew those panda bears.

panda bears illustration

cute panda bears

funny panda bears

You can also see them all in the William Cunningham’s online classroom.


And here are videos of me drawing a panda bear:



Here is where you can find my other animal drawings and illustrations:
Panda tattoo
Drawing Panda Bears with a Pentel Brush Pen
Drawing a pet portrait
Other animals drawings and illustrations
American wildlife illustrations
Grizzly bear drawing

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Sketching Beauty of Nature

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Nature is my other passion. I never stop being fascinated at how amazingly God has created this world. Just look around you, every single leaf on a tree, every blade of grass and each flower is a piece of outstanding art. Nature is something worth spending hours to pour out the feelings evoked by that beauty on paper.


Have you ever noticed when staying in a city that our life is restrained by straight lines and regular shapes? We all walk along straight sidewalks, drive along straight roads, live in box-like apartments and look through rectangular windows. I think straight lines are something artificial and somewhat unnatural. When you leave the city and go away from smog and dust, cumbersome buildings and noisy traffic, yonder to fields and forests, rivers and mountains, you’ll have a chance to enjoy being in the wonderful realm of quite another shapes. This is where you let your soul feel real freedom of nature. Look at the trees and other vegetation around you. You are unlikely to see trees of the same shape. It seems that a tree chooses by its own in which direction to grow its branches. All that boundless abundance of shapes and colors makes me realize the awesome creative power of God who was so kind to have given me a piece of his creative mind and bestowed the drawing talent on me. And I draw… draw this nature, this masterpiece which our God has shaped so wisely.


When I had more free time, I used to drive my mountain bike far away from the city to contemplate nature and make some sketches. I used to keep on riding the bike till noticing something interesting then I stopped and commenced drawing. I always had my favorite drawing tools (a fountain pen and aquarelle pencils) at my finger tips. Nature is the best teacher for an artist since it is based on certain fundamental principles. Those principles are quite simple and embrace symmetry, hierarchical branching, equilibrium etc., but in spite of this simplicity those basic principles form a stunning, infinite variety of shapes. When learning those principles we make a step towards their Creator, although being tiny, this step leads us to comprehension of God’s wisdom surrounding us, and we all have honor to be a fruit of this almighty wisdom. I want to share with you a few my nature sketches which are very precious to me as they still store those pleasant memories of beautiful nature contemplation. I hope you will love them too.

bloom twig sketch

broken tree drawing

chestnut sketch

leaves drawing

mountain ash tree sketch

tree stub sketch drawing

pond drawing

I used to work as a graphic artist for archeological expeditions in Crimea. Crimea is a peninsula in my country – Ukraine (if you happen to know nothing about Ukraine, I can recommend visiting my friend's blog about Ukraine or search for information in the web). So Crimea is known for its very beautiful nature and here are a few nature drawings I made there.

crimea juniper tree art

Crimea pine tree artwork

Crimea tree picture


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