Sometimes You Just Need A Challenge

ArtisticLicenseIf you know Brenda Swenson’s “75-day Challenge”, you know the concept of casting aside the pencil, even for organizational purposes and sketching directly with pen.  It’s said, and I believe it to be true, that doing so for a lot of sketches, will improve your ability to see and put what you see on paper.  The process moves a lot of thinking to early in the process, ensuring that when you do lay down a line it’s in the right place.

I do a lot of ink work but typically use a pencil to lightly outline main masses and relationships in a sketch.  But sometimes a guy just needs a challenge and I was feeling like one when I started looking at this railing and post.

I set up to sketch it (Stillman & Birn Zeta -5×8, Pilot Prera) and decided to do it ‘ink-only’, though I confess that I drew a pencil horizontal line at the top of the railing and a vertical line at the inside of the post.  Then I got out my pen and stared.  And then I stared some more, measuring, seeing, and occasionally putting a dot on my paper.  Then I drew the lines… and the curves.  For me it was a struggle with all the curved wrought iron to render.  And there are screw ups… there are always screw ups.  It’s my signature move.  But generally, I like the results and had a lot of fun with the process.

2013-07-24railingC

 

2 Responses to “Sometimes You Just Need A Challenge”

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  1. Yvan Breton says:

    Hi Larry,
    Did you keep a description of the exercices and goal of the 75 days challenge. It seems the Brenda Swenson blog page is no longer available.
    Thanks
    Yvan

  2. The challenge is simple. One sketch a day. Use pen only to do the sketch. No pencil…no erasers…no other ‘goals’.

    Cheers — Larry