Jennifer Lopez 28×22 pen-ink drawing on Etsy

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Ahhhh Jennifer Lopez. So beautiful. Such a good dancer.

Alas, I do not watch American Idol and I have been avoiding her recent films (or at least I should have been).

That’s now, but back in the day -namely about 12 years ago when I drew this picture -I was a huge fan of hers. Obviously I must have been to have drawn this huge picture of her!

Blast from the past…

I was looking through the depths of my portfolio, actually in search of an old circle template I used to have somewhere. Instead, I found this old drawing I did.

It must have been around 1997 or 1998. That’s the time when she first really blew up and there was a huge latin explosion in pop culture.

Honestly I’m not sure what happened to my J-Lo fandom. I don’t dislike her or anything but I think I just wasn’t interested after awhile.

Boy, I’m getting old. For the life of me I cannot remember what prompted me to draw this picture. Of course I thought she was hot but there must have been one thing that made me clear off my drawing table and get busy on this.

Back then it took a lot for me to break out my drawing stuff and attempt a portrait like this. Oh yeah, this image is 22″ x 28″. That’s a lot larger than I usually work. Normally the biggest I’ll go while drawing is 11″ x 17″ for comics.

Add to that the fact that I went to ink on this one. I’ll admit that ink is tough for me. It’s kind of unforgiving and I don’t have a steady enough hand to do it to my satisfaction.

Besides, I’ve mentioned before that I prefer the nuance of pencil to the stark contrasts of ink. But for whatever reason I decided to take it all the way this time.

I’m sure I used my rapidograph pens to start with, but from examining the strokes on the large black areas on the piece that couldn’t have been done with rapidographs, even with the largest sizes -I just ain’t that patient.

I must have used a large marker or something. I doubt it was a Sharpie -I only started using them for comic stuff recently, but more likely some specialty marker I bought from the art store down in Milwaukee.

Watercolor or bust!

Looking closer at the paper, I don’t actually think it’s drawing paper. I think this is some kind of cold-pressed watercolor paper. No doubt student grade since that’s all I could afford back then.

So either I was going to attempt to watercolor this thing at some point (I would surely have ruined it if I would have tried) or I just ran out of drawing paper and had to use the watercolor stuff.

Either way, at some point I decided against watercolor and put down ink. Normally my watercolor procedure was to draw in the image lightly with a 6H pencil and then paint over it, hopefully with no traces of pencil remaining.

The mystery deepens!

As more and more clues come to light, I begin to suspect that I was merely out of paper and that’s why I used the watercolor stock.

Actually it’s probably safe to say that’s the reason, since when I turn over the paper I see this unfinished ghost drawing on the back.

Who the heck is that??

Was it the start of a portrait? Doesn’t look like anyone I know or would have known back then.

If it was something I made up, what was it for? What was my vision of the piece? Was it a sci-fi or fantasy? The answer is lost to the ages…that’s a nice way of saying I’m a senile old bastard and I’m not even 40 yet.

Here’s how it went down

So I’m guessing I see Jennifer on tv doing her thing. Mesmerized, tongue hanging from mouth I reach over to grab a sheet of drawing paper…she must be captured by my pencil!!

Except I’m all out of paper. CURSES!!! Curse the gods.

In a fury, I sweep through all of my unfinished drawings. Oh, the paper I wasted!

Finally, I find one that can be repurposed. The phantom face will be erased later, but for now I flip the sheet over, grab my pencil and unleash the beast of creativity.

And the rest is history. Literally.

Get outta my face!!!

Oh yeah, I tried erasing the face just now, and it will not erase worth a damn. It’s stuck there, so whoever buys this thing must buy it with the full knowledge that there’s a face on the other side of this thing that could be made up or might be a representation of someone’s actual face. Bonus!

Speaking of faces, I must have used something for reference for J-Lo’s face but I have no idea what it is. I’m not good enough to just draw someone’s face like that from memory. I’m sure whatever it is it did not come out exact, anyway.

Also, reading up on these celebrity likenesses, I believe I can sell the actual drawing I did here, but I cannot sell prints of this piece legally.

That’s the reason I decided to put this thing up on Etsy. If someone wants the original drawings(s) then they can scoop it from there.

Wrapping it up

I know the images of this piece are pretty bad, but I never did get a good shot of this one. That’s another reason why I rarely work larger than 11″ x 17″, because I can’t easily scan in work that big and it becomes a pain in the ass to get a good representation of the piece.

Anyway, I’m gonna list this one at $100.00 over at Etsy. If you want it or if you know anyone who might want it please send the link to them. Otherwise this thing will sit here on my drawing table staring at me. It’s staring at me now…

UPDATE: The drawing sold, but not through Etsy. I ended up closing my account there…not really my thing, y’all.


Thanks for sharing!


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  1. Kristina L. on Jul 16, 2011

    Hi, John,
    so, I see Jen is a sin from your youth…:) However, I find it interesting you kept the drawing all this time after twelve years…it looks quite good, but I wish to see how would you draw her face right now. Ok, I am guessing you are not motivated now, as she is not of any interest to you anymore…but, maybe consider putting the “now and then” drawing just for comparison. What do you say?
    Kristina L. recently posted..Select Foam Coupon CodeMy Profile

    • JG
      Twitter: johngarrettx
      on Jul 16, 2011

      Yes I may be revealing too much of my sordid past with this post! Oh well…

      The drawing has apparently been lurking all this time in the back of one of my portfolios. I can’t believe I forgot about it -and also forgot so much about its creation back in the day.

      You know, a quick drawing of Jennifer (on a smaller scale) might not be a bad idea. I must admit I’m a bit curious myself to see if I could do better this time. Although I definitely would not go for ink.

      Be on the lookout, that drawing may soon appear!

  2. Teressa on Jul 18, 2011

    So nice the drawing Jennifer is very pretty,i wish i meet her in person and i wanna know what her secret of being
    and about the drawing i can’t wait to see more post i love to go back now and then to see if there is new post.
    Teressa recently posted..Stop Spending and Start InvestingMy Profile

    • JG
      Twitter: johngarrettx
      on Jul 18, 2011

      Thanks, Teressa – glad you enjoyed it!

  3. Hollie@ Down or Just Me on Jul 18, 2011

    Beautiful picture! I can’t believe it’s over 10 years since you drew that. She hasn’t aged a bit ;) She’s a beautiful woman so I don’t blame you for having her stuck in your head.

    • JG
      Twitter: johngarrettx
      on Jul 18, 2011

      hi Hollie, yeah I can’t believe how long it’s been either. That I forgot I even drew it just shows how senile I’m getting :)

  4. Because I dont like her I think that this drawing is really ugly, I dont know why I dont like her but there is something I really dont take to. There is nothing like an irrational dislike for someone without reason to make me look like a head case!
    danika@mobile phone spying software recently posted..Installing mobile phone spy software and programsMy Profile

    • JG
      Twitter: johngarrettx
      on Jul 18, 2011

      Danika I know why you don’t like her -it’s because of Gigli (!

      Lol, but as of now I really don’t follow her career or anything. I don’t hate or dislike her but I just am not up on her these days.

  5. danika@recycle mobile on Jul 19, 2011

    You might be onto something there although Money Train was one of my all time best films….
    danika@recycle mobile recently posted..Recycle Mobile Phones For CashMy Profile

    • JG
      Twitter: johngarrettx
      on Jul 20, 2011

      Money Train!! Forgot about that one. I should rent that this weekend, and also “White Men Can’t Jump” -featuring another Puerto Rican actress, of course. Except I never drew her…

  6. Calli @ Wedding Favors
    Twitter: pwweddingfavors
    on Jul 21, 2011

    I was a J-Lo fun too but I somehow stopped following her. The portrait looks great to me except for the black portion on the side of her eyes. :)

    • JG
      Twitter: johngarrettx
      on Jul 21, 2011

      Hi Calli, thanks for the compliment!

      Yes the solid black is kind of what I was talking about when I say I don’ care for ink. Things tend to turn into either a solid mass of black or just plain white (although if I worked more at ink I’m sure I could overcome this).

      There would have been a lot more nuance in the pencil version, I’m sure.

      And yeah that’s exactly what happened with me and Ms Lopez as well. I just kind of fell of the bandwagaon and never got back on.

  7. Andrew Walker on Jul 27, 2011

    oho…JG,you’ve done a nice job again. J-lo is definitely still looks great in your picture!
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  8. Melinda
    Twitter: Findingthehumor
    on Jul 29, 2011

    I’ve been a huge J-Lo fan for a long time…still love “I’m still I’m still Jenny from the block..” Great drawing!
    Melinda recently posted..Big Haul at Little VegasMy Profile

  9. She was and still is beautiful up to date. Nice drawing on her. You have mad talent wish I could draw like this.

  10. Cindie@sample sales on Oct 26, 2011

    I used to draw portraits of celebs and sell them at local fairs and theme parks for extra cash as a teen. This takes me back to those days, love your drawing!
    Cindie@sample sales recently posted..Online Sample SalesMy Profile

  11. JG
    Twitter: johngarrettx
    on Oct 28, 2011

    Thanks Cindie, I used to do drawing at local festivals when I was a teen as well! lol good times…
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  12. Todd@HOT Deals on Nov 25, 2011

    You were 12 when you drew this? holy cow… you got some skills at that age. lol. (I’m kidding…. I know you wrote “12 years ago”) but I’m sure you still had skills.

    Good work.

    I always liked Jennifer Lopez as a Fly Girl on in Living Color back in those days.
    Todd@HOT Deals recently posted..Buy lots of games at GameStop? Give a Gift CardMy Profile

    • JG
      Twitter: johngarrettx
      on Nov 27, 2011

      Thanks Todd lol. Yeah the Fly Girl days were some good times!

  13. Manuel@Otoplastica on Dec 20, 2011

    This is the proof that talent is something that you have from birth! Excellent portrait!
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  14. J Lo is so beautiful…and you’re right, she IS a great dancer! Even now, at her age and after having two kids I still think she’s so gorgeous and talented. Have you seen her commercials that have been airing lately? She can still shake what her momma gave her like a champ! Lol.

  15. Franzi@Yoga on Mar 30, 2012

    nice one. i like black and white drawings – i love to scan them and play around with them in photoshop. your j lo looks great – a bit like a dark emperess with all this black around the eyes… :)
    Franzi@Yoga recently posted..Buch TippsMy Profile

  16. Your picture of J. LO is amazing. I was really crazy about her in my childhood. I know all her songs by heart. Thanks you for this picture

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