Arya Stark (Game of Thrones) Sketch Card By David Desbois

Instructions are excerpts from David Desbois' tutorial. Thank you very much for giving us permission to share your work and learn from your step-by-step instructions! :)

1 - I start with pale marker Warm Grey 0.5, 1,2 and 3 (WG) to do a general structure that do not need to be exactly perfect or complete, can be just a part that you wanna work with for now. The pale crayon lines are watercolor pencil that can more or less fade in with marker(or water).

2 - I'm starting with stronger color, hence a Lavender from TOUCH and Lavender for ProMarker and a Pale Lavender from TOUCH. Stronger colors can be modified/faded with pale ones, so you need to start strong. 

3 - I started using Cool Grey 7 and 6 that are quite dark, when shading a visage, I recommend not going over 6 or 7 because if you miss, colors too dark won't 'decolorate' or fade much with a colorless blender. By keeping colors low, you can pretty much move them around and rework them with other layers to alter their value.
I then attempt to shade it all that with Warm Grey using mostly 4, 5,6 and 7, the Pale Lavender(TOUCH) and Lavender(ProMarker). 
So you play with layers until you are pretty much satisfied of what you get, it can takes a few layers or a crazy number, you just need to wait a bit between consecutive layers if you don't wanna screw your paper (and make sure your paper do well with blending). For eyes, used a Pale Blue Light (TOUCH) and lavender tones and the Mauve Shadow from TOUCH, Putty from ProMarker.

4 - I continued detailing the main features and perfect the blending with warm greys, lavender tones and also used a layer of putty in pale areas for details I used watercolor pencils, multiliners and verithin prismacolor.

For the iris, I used a Marine (ProMarker) and diminished it's intensity with Blue Grey 3 or 5 and put some 7 in the upper part. I also used the colorless to enlight some parts before that. White light dots are Copic White (with paint and brush).

5 - Background consist on the right part of a gradation from black to Cool Grey 8, using the 9 in between, left part I went up to Cool Grey 5, then used a Warm Grey 5 in the bottom part. Finally I used the Pale Blue Light from middle to top part of the left section of the background. I also used the same warm grey light tones to create some texture and dilute here and there. 

6 - Indeed that piece will need a lot more details, you can see I started the hair using a mix of Cool Grey 7 and Warm Grey 7 and also black multiliner 0.03 and 0.05 to direct my lines. You do need a lot precision and observation in that chapter. For highlights, I used Copic White and brush. For the blue in the hair, I used Premier Bleu Ciel Pale and Bleu Inactinique and also Creme much used in other areas. Now to get to the final piece, I'll rework the visage creating 'bridges' between too visible marker lines with either verithin, or watercolor pencil dry or Stabilo All-Brown color here, that will help create a better harmony in the shading. For micro details, I used multiliners. So the shading is pretty much done in pic 6.

Here's the final version. Total around 20 hours to finish.

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