This morning I was feeling restless and unfocused while I was drinking my morning coffee. I wanted to do something, but have felt all scrambled this week, partly because routines have changed in the later part of the day and are rather disruptive of the normal routines. So, something mindless. Then I saw my ca. 1810 pewter inkwell with its ceramic insert. The decision was to draw it using the dip pen sitting nearby. Well, grogginess and a general inability to draw circles are the result – ovals are even harder – and perspective? Well, the results speak for themselves!
From our trip to Flagstaff this summer. Below is the original photo, to show the color and the actual image. I think it might be behind the Hotel Monte Vista, from the parking lot, but I don’t remember. Anyway, some artistic license. I actually was planning to do the entire photo, but once I started my sketch, from the top left building, it soon became apparent that my proportions were totally off, and ended up with the upper part. However, I think the fire escapes are actually pretty interesting, and are a strong point in the drawing, as are all the lines of the pipes and landings and stairs.
It’s 92 F outside (33.33 C) in late December in Southern California. The air conditioning is on because it was 85 F in the house. A Christmas Cactus blooms in cold weather elsewhere . . .
I have been playing with iron gall ink, in this case McCaffery’s. Iron gall ink is easy to make and is the traditional ink over the centuries. It is waterproof, but with age turns the sepia so often affiliated with old manuscripts and drawings. I was playing with my goose quill pen, and a steel nib pen as well, working on calligraphy, when I decided to try it in a sketchbook. Given how busy I was this weekend, this is all I could accomplish, but I will say that the ink held up beautifully as the watercolors were added after the drawing.