Lines and Colors art blog

Sergio Martinez

Sergio Martinez
Born in Mexico, Sergio Martinez studied art at the Academie de la Gandre Chaumiere in Paris, and has had a long career in illustration for book and advertising clients in France, Switzerland, Spain, UK, Mexico, the US and other countries in Central and South America.

That I haven’t encountered his work until recently just boggles my mind, because I think he’s an amazing talent.

Martinez maintains four separate blogs. Though the distinction in focus between them can be less that clear, it’s of little consequence as they all give you opportunity to view more of his wonderful artwork.

The two major blogs are Sergio Martinez Linework and Sergio’s Linework.. The others are Sergio’s Line-work Comments and Sergio Martinez Gallery. All of them seem to mix illustration with personal projects and gallery art.

Martinez has an unusual working method, involving carbon pencils, oil pastels and colored pencils on tracing vellum, worked by dissolution and blending from the back side with careful applications of turpenoid. There are also pieces in charcoal pencil, egg tempera and watercolor.

The result is a combination of line, texture and color that has some of the best characteristics of both drawing and painting, though I presume that one would call most of the works drawings.

The fluid, graceful linework, and linear applications of textural lines in colored pencil and oil pastel, give the images a loose, gestural quality; though as Walt and and Roger Reed point out in their introduction, his approach to the work is anything but casual. He often redoes images multiple times until arriving at a final he considers acceptable.

However free the application of materials may appear, it is always in service of highly accomplished draftsmanship and sophisticated compositions.

Though he doesn’t always give credits for the project associated with the images, he does give materials for each piece; a wonderful practice considering his unusual approach and variety of technique. One of his major clients appears to be BBC Radio, for whom he has provided illustrations for boxed sets of radio dramas. Other clients include Signet, New American Library, Disney Press NY, and Readers Digest.

Also a delight, is that most of the images on his blog are linked to larger images, and there are also large images linked to the cover thumbnails of his listed books for Good News and Crossway publishers (click through twice and look for text link to “High-resolution image”).

You can find a more extensive list of books he has illustrated on, and another on

[Via Ericka Lugo]


11 responses to “Sergio Martinez”

  1. Wonderful! Amazing use of technique to achieve some great images.

    1. Thanks for the comment, Dave.

      Other readers can see Dave Dubé’s art on “old paper” here.

  2. Tim Langenderfer Avatar
    Tim Langenderfer

    The old Step-By-Step graphics magazine had a very good Martinez demo article. Volume 12 #1 1996 Thumbnails through finished art for the Pinocchio project.

    Thanks for this blog. It is an inspiring and great educational resource.

    1. Thanks, Tim. Comments appreciated, and it’s good to know about the Step by Step article.

      Other readers can see portrait artist Tim Langenderfer’s gallery of portraits here.

  3. What a great command of a variety of media. Sergio Martinez has given me new ideas when using vellum. Thanks for the post. Kind regards-

  4. Great post. I have that Step by Step and use it when I teach and introduce colored pencils. Unique and wonderful work.

  5. Some beautiful and very inspirational work there….It’s made me want to go and try my hand at some coloured pencil drawings again…thanks for the great post.

  6. I also discovered Sergio’s work a while ago. One can just look at it and drool 🙂 Great article and thanks for two links I didn’t know of him

  7. His technique is impressive. Will have a try 🙂

  8. I discovered him in a Children’s Bible Book way back while in Nigeria-I instantly fell in love-Great Post on him!