Free Art For All - Sketching Hatch Marks

While working with pen and ink, Sandy realized that everyone might need a little more detailed instruction on hatching marks.  Hatching marks are the main way that you add shading and shadows to your sketches.  In this lesson we will learn 6 of the basic forms of hatch marks and put them to use in our sketch of a teddy bear.  Sandy takes you from the planning stage of a picture to actually beginning your piece of art.  By talking through her thought process, we hope that you will not feel overwhelmed when you look at a blank piece of paper.


  1. Strathmore Sketchpad
  2. Pentel Mechnical Pencil
  3. Uniball Signo Gel pen in white, green and pink
  4. Staedtler Pigment Liner Sketch Pens
  5. General Kneaded Eraser
  6. A black and white reference photo of the Build A Bear Teddy bear 


  1. Divide up the picture of the bear into workable pieces.  Using the basic shapes (squares, triangles, circles and lines) draw your bear on your sketchpad.
  2. Practice the 6 different hatching methods.  Concentrate on contour and cross hatching.  The contour hatch marks will be used for the fur on the bear.  It will give the fur movement and texture.  Use basket hatch or cross hatch for the shadow and paw areas of the bear.  
  3. Shadow the bear, leave the nose and eyes blank until you are ready to work on the fur.  When working on the eyes, leave a white square or triangle in the 1 o’clock area of the circle.  The nose highlight will be a rectangle placed in the upper third of the nose.
  4. Use the contour hatch marks to fill in the bear.  Take your time and keep the hatch marks less than 1/2” each.  

We finish this video off by talking about evaluating your own work. We all do projects and often forget to really look at it after it is finished.  It is now time to study it and give it an honest critique.  This isn’t the fishing for compliments type of critiquing.  Study your work and find the things you did really well.  Nice work.  Now look at the things that are not so good.  What can you do better, now is the time to address that issue.  Sometimes it is best to simply start over and plan better.  Do not over correct an already beautiful piece of art.  Finally, we talk about your signature.  You as an artist need to sign your work.  Claim it but don't let the signature over power the art.