I have been knitting a lot over the past few days – so – get that pen and ink out and don’t worry about the results!
I took a few days off from painting and drawing because I needed to work on some sewing and knitting. Made a couple of masks, and did a major step in a sweater, and those both took a lot more time than I expected. But, breaking up patterns refreshes you – like a good vacation!
The next lesson in Keys to Drawing is to draw your own eyes! I can’t see past my nose without my glasses, so it was a bit of a challenge. Here I am, blindish and glasses-less.
I look pretty darned paranoid here! My eyes are wide open and I am trying to see what I am looking at in the mirror.
The next one I did with my glasses on.
Hardly stylish, but at least I could see what I was doing!
Then, a tinted bottle. As it is in the 90s, I have my water bottle everywhere I go.
Both assignments were to use a pencil, here an HB for both, and use lines. The bottle neck is a bit small compared to the rest of the bottle – it’s really about 1/3 the bottle’s diameter – and a bit misshapen at the top. I did have my glasses on when I did it.
As in painting, the idea is to go from the general (shape) to smaller details and to focus on line and shapes, not thinking, “I am drawing eyes” or “I am drawing a bottle.” Overall, it worked.
Frustrated with my inabilities to realistically do perspective and depth, which I attribute to my lack of depth perception, I’ve decided to re-edu-um-cate myself! I signed up for an online gouache class by Lena Rivo, which has been great, as well as bought an eBook version of Bert Dodson’s Keys to Drawing. I have decided to dedicate part of each day to doing at least one of his exercises if possible. The hope is to improve my drawing skills, which are the problems behind some of my painting issues.
First exercise is contour drawing. The purpose of this is to get used to the idea of checking what you see against what you draw, and get the idea into your head that what you see is not what you think. This means looking at angles and curves as well as relationships of parts to each other. Here are my exercise examples, diving in feet first!
Next was fun – look at your hand face on – that is, fingers in your face! Close an eye. Draw!
And then, imagine a pepper. Draw it. Then get a real pepper and take a good, strong look at it, and draw. My imaginary pepper is at the top, and the real pepper, in three positions and three variations of drawing style, are below.
Very glad I chose to do this! More to come.
The Alabama Hills in California are stunning. Seasons are harsh and beautiful. Here, pen and ink to get away from perspective and buildings! Why is it that nature is so much easier and relaxing to paint?!
Above is the first in pen and iron gall ink. Some watercolor, too.
First watercolor, on cheap paper. No lines.
On Arches 140 CP. No birds – they all flew away.
Given I haven’t done any watercolors for weeks, I decided to begin with pen and ink – not thrilled with results. From there, straight watercolor without any preliminary drawings or pencil lines. Got me loosened up and made me remember how much I like drawing and painting in any format except maybe acrylic and oils.
I think an abstraction in watercolor is on tomorrow’s agenda.
Finally, sat down and did some sketching. I went out with my friend, Sharon, to a local bookstore for coffee, chit chat, and a bit of sketching. So glad I did! Good to get out and see a lovely friend, put a pen to paper, and just enjoy the time. Lately I have been caught up with potential evacuations from local fires and too much TV bingeing (A French Village on Amazon Prime) and photography. As a result, artwork has been put on hold. Now, I hope I have the whatever back, and will continue!
If you didn’t grow up in the 50s, the mask and hat may mean nothing to you. If you did, perhaps you remember the TV show The Lone Ranger. It was my favorite show when I was a kid. We all wore cowboy and cowgirl outfits, complete with masks and six-shooters filled with rolls of caps. Bang! Bang! We all imagined riding horses over the wild hills, chasing bandits. I found Tonto especially cool because he was an Indian, played by Jay Silverheels (even his name was great!). There were several people who played The Lone Ranger, but the one I remember is Clayton Moore.
Interestingly, I remember the actors’ names after all these years!
And if you want to ramble about PC-ness, go somewhere else . . .
I still have #12 Dragon to do, but that is going to take a bit of effort. Hopefully it will work!
Here, playing more Ketchup, but not too far behind. I also returned to a better bit of paper, the same sketchbook that contains the first seven of this year’s Inktober. Much happier with paper, pen, and brush. Especially the paper!
#13 Ash: I thought of a tree . . . an ashtray (ewww) . . . a fire (as in what we had over the weekend, which was awful) . . . but decided on a different natural crisis: the volcano! Shades of Mordor, shades of hell.
#14 Overgrown: So many things can be overgrown, but I like the idea of an overgrown, abandoned railroad track. There is something romantic and nostalgic about these, as well as something very sad.
I am rather enjoying the density of the iron gall ink. It makes me think of India ink, but it is so much easier to use. If I remember correctly, India ink does not lend itself well to dilution with water, but the iron gall does beautifully.
I am completely behind on Inktober 2019 this year, and not sure if I even feel motivated to continue. The iron gall ink is proving problematic on some papers I have been using, as have the pens and brushes. I chose to do about 4 pictures – all of them here – on some really old paper in an apparently antique sketchbook made of really poor quality paper – at least for artwork. So, with no further ado or commentary, here you will find #8 Frail, #9 Swing, #10 Pattern, and #11 Snow.