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Drawing 1: Assignment 4

February 9, 2013

I thought I would use my daughter as the inspiration for this assignment. She is very musical and loves art; so the choice seems very natural and appropriate.

I made some thumbnails of the finished seated position in my A5 sketchbook.

Double A5 thumbnails for seated finished piece

Double A5 thumbnails for seated finished piece

Here I am trying to describe the form using line. I settled on a notion of contours.

A3 graphite using Faber Castell 8B

A3 graphite using Faber Castell 8B

Some shading seems to have crept into this piece although I strenuously avoided any conscious temptation to work as I usually do.

A3 graphite using Faber Castell 8B

A3 graphite using Faber Castell 8B

This pose is sitting with the guitar in the classical style. Front on with foreshortening. Her front most foot is on a footstool minimally suggested.

A3 graphite using Faber Castell 8B

A3 graphite using Faber Castell 8B

I really like this composition. She was playing an arrangement of Pavane by Thonoit Arbeau at the time. I used zentangle as a tool for describing the form but the shapes were devise3d from apparent contours I spotted. I think it is the foreshortening that makes it appeal to me.

A4 etching using sennelier oil pastel

A4 etching using sennelier oil pastel

I felt colour was lacking and so I resolved upon etching using Sennelier oil pastels. In this first, and because I have been teaching abstract drawing in several of my Primary Schools; I left strips in places. I am only in control of the technique. The finished result has an element of surprise.

A4 etching using sennelier oil pastel

A4 etching using sennelier oil pastel

Although blurred, the line work was hoped to generate ways of seeing the form differently and in a more concise manner.

A4 etching using sennelier oil pastel

A4 etching using sennelier oil pastel

I believed that this finished product would help me to see selectively. For instance only read purple. Only regard oraqnge lines; and so on. This is a means of forcing editing and hopefully art will generate more art.

A3 Humbrol black enamel applied with knife on baking parchment

A3 Humbrol black enamel applied with knife on baking parchment

I returned to monochrome mark making but tried to fatten my lines as much as possible. This I attempted using a knife dipped in enamel paint.

A3 Humbrol black enamel applied with knife on baking parchment

A3 Humbrol black enamel applied with knife on baking parchment

Some might argue I am using tone but most of the marks were single stroke applications as far as I could manage. I left dribbles in because lucky happening may prove to be the most powerful part of the piece..

A3 Humbrol black enamel applied with knife on baking parchment

A3 Humbrol black enamel applied with knife on baking parchment

I really enjoyed working this way. The baking parchment is a beautifully smooth surface and took the enamel paint without shrinking or cockling.

A3 Humbrol black enamel applied with knife on baking parchment

A3 Humbrol black enamel applied with knife on baking parchment

The translucent nature of the paper means that if it is held to a window lovely differences of tonality can be observed according to the thinkness of the enamel. I decided to contrast this with thin line work and turned to my reed pen.

A3 violinist with reed pen in ink

A3 violinist with reed pen in ink

She plays the violin. An instrument that has an elegant shape. Having done several sketches I was becoming aware of economy of stroke. I started trying to use the least strokes possible yet still describe a figure. I enjoyed “reading” the subject like this.

A3 violinist with reed pen in ink

A3 violinist with reed pen in ink

This is my favourite. It captures her energy and a sense of pride (if I am not being too fanciful) in the way she holds herself in this pose. Not arrogance- just confidence.

A3 violinist with reed pen in ink

A3 violinist with reed pen in ink

I like the flow of this pose but some of the details are crude despite trying to use lost and found lines. This was not easy with dipping ink but quite expressive and good fun.

The final submission part 1

I went for as clean a line as possible to contrast with the preliminary studies and the final tonal submission in part 2 reclining figure.

A2 rotring .35 technical pen on Arches watercolour paper

A2 rotring .35 technical pen on Arches watercolour paper

I realy want to use diluting ink to show delicious shadows of the chair on the floor. This would ground the chair and hint at the obscured portions of the chair.

A Reclining Figure

A3 tonal graphite stick

A3 tonal study usingn vine charcoal

Vine charcoal encourages rapid execution. There are strong darks and the potential for expressive mark making that is responsive to pressure and intensity. The tension in the shoulders shows my daughter’s growing awkwardness at being my model.

A3 tonal study with graphite stick

A3 tonal study with graphite stick

Similary with graphite sticks. There is the same immediacy but it is  much cleaner. It creates broad strokes used side on. There is a pleasant grainy quality due to working on the laminate floor. The frottage effect is subtle.

A3 tonal study using graphite stick

A3 tonal study using graphite stick

Alternatively long thin lines can be made using  the stick vertically such as the stripes on the Mexican blanket hinted at in the background.

A3 tonal study using graphite stick

A3 tonal study using graphite stick

I do like being rapid and instinctual when the mood suits me. I am uncomfortable with mess and like to know that when the mark is placed, it will stay there. Enamel is fugitive and difficult to control. It has its own agenda. But once placed it is relatively stable. The graphite and charcoal fixatives do not perform to my satisfaction.

Coloured pastels

A3 soft pastel on black card

A3 soft pastel on black card

I just blocked in the tones to show how the model occupies the space. The sense of a reclining figure, the composition of the pose is satisfactory. Because the tones are scribbled the sense of form is compromised.

A3 soft pastel on black card

A3 soft pastel on black card

I tried to layer the colours a little more to give the sense of light hitting the body to create highlights.  The pose is captured but more acknowledgement is given to the context. I am beginning to enjoy the mark making potential of the leather sofa. I resisted the temptation to blend pastels deliberately

Final submission part 2

 

A1 mixed media reclining figure

A1 mixed media reclining figure

My daughter rebelled after posing for this picture as she is clearly uncomfortable about posing. I have to respect her. I had this as a rough tonal sketch but had to work into it a bit more. I love colour and long for my own studio space with good natural light.

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One Comment
  1. akismet-ded0348a1239d82971c6c561d28e0116 permalink

    I really find the last tonal study in graphite quite interesting. It gives me an intense emotional reaction because what i see is an empty stare back at me. Also, most importantly and unintentional is the way the photograph of the drawing was taken. There is a soft highlight on the left and shadow on the right that gives a sense of real lighting on and behind the figure, like that of Trompe-l’œil (<- wikipedia's french spelling). I love it!

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