Romance Roundtable: Learn to Draw Edition! Boyfriends.

Your POMEcrones are long-time lovers of love, and therefore also big fans of romance Webtoons. One of our favorites has to be Boyfriends. by refrainbow—a feet-kickingly adorable comic about four polyamorous college students navigating their growing relationship.

Refrainbow’s art is So Cute, and when we found out that Webtoon was releasing a Learn to Draw book for Boyfriends. we thought it would be a fun opportunity to do something new with Romance Roundtable! We may not all be artists, but our youths were all in some way touched by the ancient text, How to Draw Manga, so how bad could we be?

Let’s get into it!

Ashley: PREP

a side-by-side comparison between the Prep chibi from the Learn to Draw: Boyfriends.! book and the drawing done by Ashley

I believe I am part of the perfect core audience for Learn to Draw Boyfriends., because I am the absolute babiest at drawing. I am also deep in my broke era and don’t have any digital drawing tools, so I really leaned into the classic adolescent “poor art kid” experience by using what I had available: my journal and a set of colored pencils I got for Christmas.

Despite what are some very real anatomical flaws, I think I got to capture Prep’s put-together-but-make-it-a-little-sexy vibe. I modified the example outfit a bit to bring in some of my own particular style predilections, namely, an obsession with the color lavender, and a Haruka Tenoh-inspired obsession with solid unbuttoned shirts. Also, I knew that I could not draw a floral print to save my life.

Rachel: The Haruka Tenoh connection is so big brained, and that earring!!
CC: his look! His walk! His booba! Incredible, no notes, dream bf imo
Jenny: ok the cleavage is actually So Important.


a side-by-side comparison between the Nerd chibi from the Learn to Draw: Boyfriends.! book and the drawing done by CC

Like Nerd, I appreciate florals, pastels, and explaining my obsessions at great length, so he was really my top boyfriend choice from the get-go. When approaching this piece, I strove to overcome four potential hurdles: 

  • I do not own a tablet
  • I do not have the physical media tools to render Nerd in his full vaporwave palette glory
  • I am not an artist
  • Drawing white rimmed glasses in pen was not possible with my lobster-claw handed lack of fine dexterity so I had to change things up a little

But all things considered, I hope I did this cutie justice!

Rachel: The little round flip of his sweater is giving me real Ghibli vibes!
Ashley: Can we talk about the pen shading??? I am extremely impressed with the texture! He looks like he stepped right out of a perfect, bright summer day!
Jenny: oh it’s giving Hamtaro and i think that’s exactly what he was going for!! so, well captured imo!

Jenny: GOTH

a side-by-side comparison between the Goth chibi from the Learn to Draw: Boyfriends.! book and the drawing done by Jenny

As an embarrassing earth-toned prep, I have a deep appreciation for goths. There’s a real Commitment to the Bit that I cannot help but respect. As for the drawing part of this experience, I can only say that chibis are hard, actually!! I’d thought that maybe going chibi instead of full-body would make things easier, and maybe it did, but also chibis are deceptive. The ratios! I’m not sure I actually got them right. But, I did find the section of the book introducing proportions to be really helpful!

Rachel: Huge shout out to Jenny for getting the chibi with the FORESHORTENED HAND!!! Of course this sassy goth is the one who had to do the gesture. 
CC: Can’t help but echo Rachel’s praise for the foreshortened chibi hand, but I also can’t get enough of his tiny boots!!!!!
Ashley: Ugh the juxtaposition of the ~*super serious*~ face with the “cutie pie” t-shirt kicks me right in the heart. My teenage self is with him and my present self is only further convinced that I am destined to be murdered by a hot Scorpio one day.

Rachel: JOCK

a side-by-side comparison between the Jock chibi from the Learn to Draw: Boyfriends.! book and the drawing done by Rachel

I was secretly happy to be assigned to the Jock Chibi — this himbo is a Good Boy with a canonically Great Ass, so I knew he would be fun to draw. And I was right!! The swagger, the shiny hair, all around very fun. I appreciated the author’s notes on the fashion preferences of each Boyfriend, the possibilities for dressing up this streetwear king are endless!

CC: Jock looks gorgeous and perfect in every way and I especially appreciate his cute little butt 🍑
Jenny: god the side-by-side Really sells those glute implants
Ashley: Do I want him or do I want to be him??????? How did you nail the perfect confident-yet-sweet expression???

Whew! This was both harder and easier than we’d expected. Refrainbow, if you’re reading this, you are very talented and we love you! The Learn to Draw Boyfriends book that we used comes out on April 16th, 2024, along with a Boyfriends Coloring Book. Both make excellent gifts and can be purchased at the Webtoon Shop!

And for some behind-the-scenes content, head over to the POME Ko-Fi!

Jenny Mott

Jenny Mott

Jenny is just a Silly Nerd with a lot of Feelings about Comic Books and Friendship and also This Capitalist Yoke We All Share; she enjoys Dogs and Sleeping and Cartoons. Her three favorite words are: Breakfast All Day.
Rachel Weiss

Rachel Weiss

Rachel is a designer and artist from Texas. She is pro-feminism, pro-crones, and pro-dogs. She's also Boss Crone at POMEgranate Magazine, and one day hopes to be able to drink her tea without so much milk and sugar.
CC Calanthe

CC Calanthe

If you prick your finger and write “Cat Fancy” on your mirror during a harvest moon, CC will appear behind you and make you put human clothes on your pets. CC is Head Crone in Charge at POMEgranate Magazine, as well as the co-host of Moon Podcast Power MAKE UP!!
Ashley Gallagher

Ashley Gallagher

Ashley writes comics and emails from zir burrow in the Pacific Northwest. Ze is a sentient subtropical swamp fern whose favorite food is old words.
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