Scratching the Surface: A Showcase of Scratchboard Illustration

May 24th, 2012

There are some illustrators who take their talents a little bit deeper, while still scratching the surface. Bad pun aside, scratchboard illustration is an amazing artform, one that we our turning our inspirational spotlight on for this new post. By scratching their works from these special surfaces, and at times combining them with paints or inks, these creative illustrators give life to some truly inspired pieces.

Below is a collection that features just a few of these very talented artists working with this breathtaking, and time consuming artform.

Scratching the Surface

Mark Summers

Mark Summers has a gallery that is full of so many sensational illustrations that it was hard to narrow it down for the post. His caricatures and illustrations are richly detailed and overflowing with creativity.





Gilbert & Sullivan

George Eliot

Edgar Allen Poe

James Joyce

Heather Lara

Heather Lara (also known as heatherzart on DA), has an overly impressive body of work which tends to focus on animal portraits. Her scratchboard illustrations, those with color and those without, highlight the delicate pieces that can be etched from the surfaces of these boards.

Gotcha! by Heatherzart

Love Me The Most by Heatherzart

Izu 4


Narmada 3

Pombe 1

Tiger 1

Cheetah Snuggle

Unexpected Guest

A Glimpse of the Past

Eric Sabee

Eric Sabee has a gallery of work that differs from some of the others on the list. Not only are they some of the more colorful scratchboard pieces showcased, the illustrative characters and imaginative fantasy works show another side of this inspiring technique at play.

Great Omen Raven

Dimension Diver

Jimi Hendrix

Black Watch Elite


Arbiter of Fate

Cristina Penescu

Cristina Penescu is another artist whose work focuses on animals, with an impressive collection of work in her portfolio. So many pieces that are not only finely crafted, but that also capture so much emotion. Brilliantly capturing the heart and beauty of nature and her subjects.


Hunger Crisis

Cautious Observation

Bearly Interested

Into the Light



Within Reach

Other Fine Works and Artists

Scratchboard & Clayboard by Patrushka

SCRATCHBOARD by Kevin Fleming

Walden Scratchboard by Caitlyn Knepka

Steeplechase Jump Jump by Tifani Carter

Walls of Separation by Carl Licence

SCRATCHBOARD by Kevin Fleming

kitteh by ohin

Tall Girl – Colored by shonechacko

Walls of Separation 2 by Carl Licence

scratchboard flamingo by rah-bop

SCRATCHBOARD by Kevin Fleming

Your Turn

Now that we have wrapped up this end of the showcase, we want to hear from you. What were some of your favorite pieces or artists from this collection? Do you know of any other pieces or scratchboard illustrators that didn’t get a mention? Feel free to let us know in the comment section.


The jungle is alive: Be it a collaboration between two or more authors or an article by an author not contributing regularly. In these cases you find the Noupe Editorial Team as the ones who made it. Guest authors get their own little bio boxes below the article, so watch out for these.


5 comments for „Scratching the Surface: A Showcase of Scratchboard Illustration
  1. vijayvanecha on May 25th, 2012 at 12:09 pm


  2. Kristin Currier on May 26th, 2012 at 6:13 pm

    Wow. Inspiring! Makes me want to revisit the medium! I have a few you can view on my website on the Illustration page, the first 3 in the slideshow are all done on black Claybord by Ampersand. Funny how Day of the Dead lends itself so well to scratchboard. Thanks for posting these.

  3. ISSA on May 27th, 2012 at 8:22 am

    You need to check out the International Society of Scratchboard Artists at you’ll find more outstanding scratchboard art there.

  4. Azunga on May 30th, 2012 at 8:55 pm

    This is sick!

    I’ve been looking around for this type of artwork. I had no idea it was called Scratchboard until now. Thank you so much for this post!

  5. peteb on May 30th, 2012 at 10:03 pm

    Great work! Good to see scratchboard (scraperboard in the UK) still appreciated as a medium, and artists still prepared to go analog.