Sketching Pastéis de Belém with Markers

Pastéis de Belém inspires 2 artists: watch a marker drawing done on site in Lisbon, Portugal of these lovely egg custard tarts. the star dessert of the city!

Using alcohol based markers, a bright, colorful marker drawing is shown from beginning to end. Drawing by Teaching Artist Cat Huang with commentary from Art Prof Clara Lieu.

5 min. video

Video Walkthrough

  • Cat draws with colors that are not in the scene because they are sometimes there to establish value, not color within the image.
  • Drawing the squooshed Pastéis de Belém was appealing in order to create contrast between the 2 egg tarts.
  • The alcohol based brush pens are very convenient for drawing on site.
  • When you are drawing on site, the key is to not have any expectations in terms of creating a 100% super polished artwork.
  • Drawing on site, it’s extremely unlikely that you’ll have sufficient time to finish an artwork.
  • When you’re drawing and traveling, it’s pretty much guaranteed something unpredictable will happen.
  • Sticking to just the local colors in the scene is often not as visually interesting.
  • The key to introducing unusual colors in a drawing is to distribute them all over the composition, so they don’t feel like a sour thumb within the context of all the other colors.
  • Cat approaches drawing text (in this case, the box the Pastéis de Belém come in) by viewing it as abstract shapes, not as literal text.

Prof Lieu’s Tips

“I find that when you go too far and ruin a piece, that it provides a much better reference for the range of what’s possible.

When you have 2 versions of your piece that you can look at side by side, you’ll find that seeing where you want to go becomes a lot clearer.”

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