Month: November 2015

Background Experiments

I needed a few days to catch up on life after the Studio Tour, which was a lot of fun. (A big hello and thanks to everyone who stopped by to look at art and chat!)  My next planned drawing requires yet another dark background with lighter objects in front. I seem to be fond of doing this, and I love the visual result. In the past, I have always sketched out the main features and then filled in the background by drawing around them in pencil. For a large drawing, this is a lot of work, and if the objects are intricate or oriented the wrong way, they start to interfere with my stroke.

Given enough patience, this is not problem, but especially for a larger drawing, getting it right takes time – so rather than just start, I thought I would play around a bit to explore other options.

Materials Tried Four Pics
I tried compressed graphite (crayons and sticks), powdered graphite, and masking (fluid and tape)

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Growing up in northern Germany, every now and again we would go on a trip and look at some Viking site or exhibit. Vikings are part of the local lore I was raised with, so many years later, when I lived in Newfoundland and my family came to visit, we made a trip up the Northern Peninsula to L’Anse aux Meadows, the site of the (short-lived) Viking Settlement in North America.

Exploring the region, we found a beautiful walk to a sea cave, with rock and pebble beaches that offered interesting finds. This included the rock I finished drawing last week, some interesting plants, and a small group of sea urchin tests that had gotten washed up in a group of pebbles.

LAnse aux Meadows 2 Read more

More Tools

Ink is amazingly fast to draw with. I guess that is why cartoonists often use it – that and the fact that sharp, black lines are easy to reproduce. So while I work on another colour piece for the Studio Tour (hopefully to be posted later in the week) here are a few more tool sketches.

Three Tool Pics
An old saw, an auger bit, a small file, and a pry bar, which I have no picture of.

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Rocking Colour

It has been quite some time since I worked with colour. To test the waters, I decided to start with coloured pencils, which seemed fairly close to my trusty graphite. I also ignored most of the 100+ colours that came in the box and went with a limited palette.  Given the subject matter (yes, more rock!), this was fairly straightforward, but the way the colours layer took some getting used to.

Palette 3

In the end, I used all the cool greys, plus about half the other colours I tested.  Read more