Ginger with forty cloves of garlic

You might think that I’m about to make a fancy recipe that needs a lot of garlic, but that’s not the case. I was doodling in my sketchbook while chatting with Suhita and Nina on Zoom. The ginger and garlic were on the table in front of me, but since our conversation lasted longer than it takes to draw two heads of garlic and some ginger, I moved the garlic around and around and just kept drawing it at different angles. Drawn with my Bic 1.0 mm pen in my Hahnemuhle sketchbook.

16 Comments on “Ginger with forty cloves of garlic”

  1. Lori Zajic says:

    Wow! Great use of time😉
    Love it!


    • Thanks Lori!! We always draw when we’re chatting except I forgot to ask both of them to show me what they were drawing. We started this weekly meetup in the first year of the pandemic and we are still doing it. A great way to stay in touch with California friends!


  2. Lori Zajic says:

    So fun! What a great idea😊


  3. lois says:

    I love garlic, but thought, ‘wow! this is some kind of recipe Shari is giving us.’ So much better drawing that much instead of cooking with that much garlic!


  4. Chris Rusk says:

    So beautiful


  5. I love this! The drawing and the story. 

    Sent from my iPhone


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  6. Judy Sopher says:

    hI have always rhouht garlic was the most interesting subjects to paint, but it is equally interesting to draw.. (Tho, I haven’t tried that-yet). Love how you moved it around. Inspiring again.


  7. Judy Sopher says:

    Wish I could correct my comment.” Rouht” should be thought) Since I developed macular degeneration, my typing is a bit off. I can see most things fine . Still painting. Just print can be hard. So please overlook my typos.


  8. Good use of your time. I like how you kept moving the garlic so you could draw it from different angles.


  9. Paul Koontz says:


    I’ve really enjoyed these pen/ink sketches and find your control w such a fine nib to be impossible to recreate. :-/

    A few questions:

    How do you keep your lines so controlled (straight and parallel)?

    What tips do you have for recreating all the different levels of tone in an image like this, or the spice jars you sent recently? Do you start with the lightest areas everywhere and slowly build up the darker shades?

    How long to these sketches take you? It feels like I can’t look up and down often enough to get all the highlights that you capture. Sheesh! 🙂

    Love your work…and thanks!


    • Hi Paul, Thanks so much for writing.
      I will try to answer your questions, but I think this is much more of an intuitive process compared to painting. With a watercolour I always have a path from light to dark areas and I try not to go over areas again and again. With ballpoint pen, I work all over the place instead of completing one area and then moving on to another. I start with a light pen line and build up tone gradually in different areas. As for highlights, I try not to outline them which means that I just have to leave those areas white which does require some care.
      As for time, I would say each of the ballpoint sketches takes about an hour.
      Thanks for having a look at the work.


      • Paul Koontz says:

        Shari…many thanks for taking the time to reply to my basic questions. Some serious practice is in order on my end, and I’d add my vote to earlier comments about the appeal of a course on this kind of pen/ink sketching. Have a great holiday


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