'Draw The Line' - My Profile Pic .. and Quite Possibly Becoming My Identity

in #hive-1141058 months ago (edited)

The Date Was March 14th 2018..

It was my 5th post and it received ZERO upvotes and ZERO comments. It was like I didn't even exist. Heck, I was just getting my feet wet and so new to the platform that I was mostly just talking to myself. Which I still do some days! haha. The post was about A blind contour drawing I made while referencing an album cover of his called "Draw The Line'. Little did I know that this drawing I created and chose to use as my profile picture, would become such a part of how I am recognized here in this community.

Flash Forward To Today ..

Almost 2 years later, and I am still attached to the picture. I don't know how many of you have thought about this, but I had given some thought to changing my profile picture several times. I came to the realization that I may not want to do this, a while back while in the discord. I didn't have a profile picture and some was talking with me and had no clue that they knew me from the platform. When they figured it all out they said that they know people by their picture and not so much by the name anymore. This made total sense to me, so I made the decision that however I felt, I was sticking with my version of David Gray.. which I don't associate with him anymore. If anything, I look at the picture and think of myself, of steem and most of all I think of my friendships here.

David's Look Is Pretty Neutral ..

And given the state of things in the community as a whole, I think it's befitting of how I feel most days. Neutral. Not happy nor sad. Just a nice even neutral. Me and Mister Neutrality have come a long way in the last two years. I have become more than a 99 word blogger (the length of the original post) and my blog posts contain more markdown and glitter than before. With every new adventure comes a learning curve. I accepted that and kept chugging away until I gained a little momentum. I gained a few friends, was accepted by my peers, was asked to join causes, to help where my abilities could be of use, joined some awesome communities, and tried to make a name for myself as someone who likes to learn and is always trying to put forth a good effort. There have been day's that do not make sense to me.. like the ones where I see I have lost a friendship or have been muted (probably because I post too much about Molly and Pepper.. lol) I've Learned that nothing comes easy here, the people behind the profile names and pictures are (mostly) human with lives and feelings outside of steem, and that I cherish the whole experience. And do you want to know something?? All along the way, Mr. Gray's likeness stuck by me unfaltering in his neutrality and next to my name BDMillerGallery.

So Today, I Find It Hard To Resist ..

Giving the original 'ZERO' post and the drawing itself, 'Draw The Line', the respect it deserves. Today is the day I dig it up and reintroduce him. "Mr. Gray's likeness, Meet my friends and my family!" Haaaa.. Now I feel SO much better. haha.. and a bit weird I think. All I ask is that you cut me a little bit of slack about the weirdness :-) Below is the original March 14th, 2018 post with a few tweaks.


'Draw The Line' - A Blind Contour Drawing

David Gray is one of my all time favorite artists. How befitting that His album cover be titled ‘Draw The Line’, because that’s what I kind of did. A pad of paper, a Sharpie, a few pieces of charcoal, and one continuous line coming together in order to create a really cool piece.


Is a technique in which an the artist draws a subject, in one CONTINUOUS line, without looking at the paper or their hand. I strictly focus on the major details of the subject, moving my hand slowly until I’m finished Drawing. I never look down until I feel the drawing is complete. Sometimes after I am done drawing the contoured line, and more than not, I shade areas using charcoal. It's amazing how a little shading, from something as simple as charcoal, can transform a drawing and bring it to a whole other level. And before you ask, the answer is NO. No I do not shade in a blind manor. I have both my eyes on the drawing while applying the charcoal. If I didn't, that would be amazing!

It is usually very interesting on how these drawings evolve and end up sparking some sort of conversation at the very least. They don't speak to everyone's taste in art, but you have to admit they are unique.. whether good or bad. Even if I don't turn any heads or receive any 'feel good' feedback, utilizing this technique is a terrific way to improve your eye to hand coordination. I think there are many out there whom could benefit from trying this style out. So whether your an artist, sports player, gamer, cosmetologist or whatever, we could all use a simple way to improve our eye hand coordination.

Please enjoy this slightly grotesque piece, one more time

This first photo is of the drawing, un-shaded and still attached to my pad. Roughly a 14 inch by 18 inch pad I believe. I started the drawing at the center of the left eye, and finished it at the bottom left just below his hand. You always loose your place within the drawing, no matter how hard you try and keep accurate mental measurements. That's the fun of this type of thing and the reason I end up with "grotesquely unique" drawings.

The finished product.. creation.. after the charcoal was applied. I like to add just a little and try not to over do it and destroy the creativity and overall looseness of the piece.

My finished drawing next to the the subject matter, which is the album cover I refereed to earlier. This makes it easy to compare those major features I chose to follow with my eyes (blindly) and how my mind/eyes actually transferred them onto the paper. You can also see what details I decided to highlight with the charcoal, such as the pinstripes on the suit.

Why not frame it up to see what it would look like finished and presented. Not to bad, but a larger frame would be better. This one cropped too much of the drawing off. The final step in protecting my drawing, was to apply Grumbacher fixative, in three or four coats, over the entire thing. This will help to keep the charcoal in place and protect it from yellowing.

I Hope You Enjoyed ..

My rant that was intended for paying homage, long over due, to the origination of my profile picture. Now I can rest assured that Mr Neutrality (aka David Gray Blind Contour Drawing, aka Draw The Line) will remain where he has quietly stood for two years.. Next to my name; A symbol there to remind me that I will get out of steem and blogging, what I put into steem and blogging. Hopefully that is perceived as quality, but if not, at least I am having fun trying! Come on Mr. Neutrality .. ON TO THE NEXT POST WE GO!!!!

Have A Great Wednesday my fellow Steemians!!



Thank you for swinging by my blog and checking out the post. Have a great day!



All words, pictures and art pieces are the sole property of B D Miller Gallery, unless otherwise noted and credited, and are not to be reproduced or copied without the prior written consent of B D Miller Gallery.


About Me ~ The Artist

My art work incorporates a wide variety of subject matter, including landscape, seascape, cityscape, and still life images. My works are the product of a continuing process of exploration through which I seek to portray personal and visionary interpretations of my surroundings. My paintings are impressions of places and events from everyday life, an interpretation of my imagination, and personal responses to what I see and feel on a daily basis. More recently I have invested generous amounts of time into my landscape painting. I am surrounded by natural and man made beauty, which inherently presents itself in the tri-state area, and almost demands that I paint it.

Not everything is art. Art is not everything, but it comes close. Art is everywhere and all the time. Art makes you experience the beauty of the world, the people in it, and the places we call home. Art itself is so influential that it can tell stories, show feelings, and express passion or fury. Art exists in addition to language; expression of sensations and thoughts, revealing a way of thinking too subtle and delicate for words.

For me art requires love, honesty and perseverance. In return, it reveals some personal, non-analyzable, and creative untamed passion. For the public, art with its magnificent beauty, improves mood and health and builds better human beings and communities. It engages the intellect, softens the heart, strengthens the soul and frees the spirit.


If Your Interested In Purchasing Any Of My Work:

They can be found for sale in

My Facebook Shop


My Etsy Store

If you don't see the piece in either shop, It may still be drying. Let me know and I can upload it as soon as possible to be available. Or you can always make me an offer (in SBD or STEEM) in the comments section of this post. If we agree on a price, I will then ship the painting to you. (shipping costs will be determined by your location).


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“If you live to be 100, I hope I live to be 100 minus 1 day, so I never have to live without you.”

– Winnie the Pooh



You look great in your Avatar. I've always wanted to get one but I don't have your skills, however I'm going to try anytime because I'd like to learn.
Always at the beginning our posts are forgotten, nobody sees them, so now I couldn't pass without leaving you a comment, I don't want the comment box to be empty again. 😜

hahahaha.. You always make me laugh and smile @mballesteros :-) Thank you for being so sweet and building my self esteem. You can do it! you can draw anything you want to.. I know you can :-D

Ah "Winnie the Pooh" and Molly and Pepper too.

It is hard to get started on steem, I think it will always be hard. I imagine if I went over and tried to be part of facebook, I would find it hard. In three more years, I will likely forget all about how hard it was to first be starting on steem block chain, but I have time to grow and learn as we go, things are always on the move here, no stops no pauses, no breaks, just like your one line drawings, we go until we are done, and then the shading starts.

Very poetically delivered comment @bashadow. I agree and think your absolutely right. Like anything, you start strong, see little results, question you methods and time commitment, then a little magic happens restoring your faith. Very hard to get past that first 3 or 4 months. Nothing that is worth the investment comes easy. Thank you for your continued support and engagement. I always love reading your take on things :-)

I dug up my very first steemit post yesterday, put the link in the #creative-writing channel of PHC.
The name I put (because you have to 'support' someone else to post a link there) thought I was tagging him to come see. I didn't mean that, but he pointed out that I got 4 upvotes and quite a few "Welcome to Steemit" comments.
Interesting perspective Brad. I don't think I could do a line drawing with my eyes closed @bdmillergallery, or open for that matter.

Haha.. yeah, took me a few days to figure out the whole channel's thing too. I am sure he'll get it sorted out, but nice that it led him to read your post. I think my very first post received 7 votes (one was mine) and a few comments. Not too bad.. then came several that went unnoticed. It's a long road. longer for some. It's just nice to put something out there into the universe! haha. Thanks for the compliments on the drawing :-)

Well deserved compliments Brad. 🖖

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Oh wow! A story behind this precious drawing.

I can understand the feeling. I think that everybody has experienced the same one time or another.

But thank you for bringing it back again, and sharing your talent to us. I am not an artist, so I am always in awe with how artistic people can be. And the fact that you are not looking at your drawing while doing it?!? Whaaaaaat????? Even with my eyes open I cannot do that?!? How come? Where is justice? Hahaha! 😂😜

I applaud you talent. I really do. 👏👏👏

It's already your identity. When I first saw it, I already knew it was you even before reading your title.

It was my 5th post and it received ZERO upvotes and ZERO comments. It was like I didn't even exist.

That's what happens to most newbies. Only the introductory post make more comments and pennies.

This work is really exceptional. I salute you for this.

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