Paestum Sunset by Mui-Ling Teh

Purple ball point biro pen on an A4 paper in my sketchbook. As mentioned in yesterday’s post , during my exchange in Italy we had an assignment where we had to do a sketch from the urban assignment everyday. This drawing here was actually done on the same day as the remain from the Temple of Jupiter

On the first day of our Southern Italy field trip, we first stopped in Cumae to see the ancient structures there, including the Temple to Jupiter and the Cave of the Sibyl. Afterwards we stopped at our hotel in Paestum, where there was a beach nearby, and the sky was constantly changing. While most of my classmates were swimming or drinking bubbly I decided to draw. Previously all my drawing were done in black ink, sometimes with shading done in grey marker – I wasn’t sure if using ball point pen was allowed for the assignment (we had to use pen – pencil wasn’t allowed). But I just decided to grab my purple ball point biro pen anyways, not caring if this drawing would count towards my assignment or not – since the sunset was such a pretty colour, I only felt it would be fitting to use a coloured pen.

The next day I asked the teacher if using ball point was okay, and she asks “Why would you want to use a ball point pen?” and I answered “… so I can shade… and use colour…”. She said I could use ball point if I wanted to, but she did seem find it strange that I would.

Some may remember some photos I had posted previously at the beach in Paestum:

My drawing here may not look very much like these – the way the sky looked really depending on where I was looking, and the sky and clouds were constantly changing. Here are a few more:



Mui-Ling Teh – Art and Words from the Heart



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Mui-Ling Teh – Art and Words from the Heart

© Copyright Mui-Ling Teh. All rights reserved. My art and writing do not belong to the public domain. Materials may not be reproduced, uploaded, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted, copied, edited or published in any form or by any means without my written permission.

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    JUSTARTabout 3 years ago


  • cherylc1
    cherylc1about 3 years ago


  • Michael McCasland
    Michael McCaslandabout 3 years ago

    Beautifully created.

  • Hugh Fathers
    Hugh Fathersabout 3 years ago

    Lovely!! . . .

  • Thank you Hugh!

    – Mui-Ling Teh

  • Adam Stone
    Adam Stoneabout 3 years ago

    I absolutely love using biro bens – they are so underrated. They are very sensitive to pressure therefore they are ironically absolutely perfect for shading.

    Mui Ling, if you continue to use biro here and there, like i so hope you do, try your hand at cross hatching. Also, fancy drawing a plar? Plars were born to be captured in Biro… i cant help but think you would capture them so well

  • I love ball point/biro pens too! (It wasn’t until I met you that I learned that they could also be called biro pens). You are right; they are so underrated. Generally fine liners are favored – even when it’s just for writing, it looks more formal and more like a fine print – but biro pens can certainly do things that fine liners cannot – like soft shading or drawing on plastic. I remember as a school kid sometimes I had notebooks with shiny covers that was difficult to write my name on unless I used a biro pen.

    In terms of using them artistically, I first experimented with them when I was in high school, drawing fancy diagrams on overhead sheets . I have done cross-hatching before – for these sketches that I did in Italy however, as I was on site drawing them, with limited time, I couldn’t make them very fine, and I just coloured them in very quickly; if at all… or I may just have picked up a habit of drawing with them like a pencil. I do have few biro pen drawings from that period that are much finer than this though – much softer shading; I’ll be uploading one of them in a few days (tomorrow will be another one in black ink).

    As for the plar, I believe you are the master at using biro pens and hence you would do them so much more justice. But it’s not only you’re ability to draw with biro pens that brings them to life, but you’ve always been so good at drawing eyes, and those plars wouldn’t be plars without their big alluring eyes… It’s funny we’re on this topic now; I was looking through you’re portfolio recently and kept enlarging your drawing of your pug – the eyes in that drawing are simply outstanding!

    – Mui-Ling Teh

  • WhiteDove Studio kj gordon
    WhiteDove Stud...about 3 years ago

    Well done….seems like the sun is just pouring down on the sea

  • LoreLeft27
    LoreLeft27about 3 years ago

    oooh pretty very pretty drawing fantastic

  • Mui-Ling Teh
    Mui-Ling Tehalmost 3 years ago

    More drawings:

    If I ever get to it I’ll post more!

  • Denise Abé
    Denise Abéalmost 3 years ago

    beautiful :) xxx

  • Thank you :)

    – Mui-Ling Teh

  • Ellen van Deelen
    Ellen van Deelenover 2 years ago

    Its beautiful done Mui-Ling!

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