Back before blogs and such artists could decide to learn something brand new and experiment to their hearts content without anyone knowing they were doing it. When one has a blog, however, there’s still a desire on the part of the blogger, as well as his two followers, to continue to post “results.” This is balanced by another desire, a desire to not embarrass oneself (grin).
I’ve mentioned that I was doing lots of experiments with pencil and, as a pen driver, how disappointed I’ve been with the results. But I’ve now had three emails asking why I wasn’t posting those experiments. I’ll try to explain.
They are experiments. When Edison did his proverbial 2000 attempts to develop the light bulb he didn’t report failures or even partial successes. The modern way of looking at art these days is that we say “It’s all about the process,” but most people still believe that it’s about the product and the internet underscores that belief.
So, at the risk of embarrassing myself, I’ve scraped together a few of those experiments. I confess that most of these things get thrown in the garbage and are done on photocopy paper. I don’t digitize them, don’t display them, and, frankly, I don’t think much about them as most of the thinking is done while I’m doing them. I’m learning, or trying to, how to use pointy devices that aren’t fountain pens.
Here’s the tool kit I’ve been using. I added the large charcoal holder because I have it on my desk and sometimes do really quick sketches of something or other that’s part of a YouTube video I’m watching. From left to right is 1) Blackwing pencil, 2) General charcoal pencil, 3) Prismacolor black, 4)&5) Abrecht-Durer watercolor pencils, 6) Derwent water-soluble pencil, 7) Monol Zero eraser, 8-11) Mars-Lumograph 3H HB 4B and 8B pencils, 9) Ticonderoga #2 soft pencil.
All the capped pencils have very long points, sharpened with a knife. I carry small pieces of sandpaper to sharpen them. Oh…the charcoal holder is an old Cretacolor holder that I love. I tried to find a source to get another one but I could only find a metal one from Cretacolor. I love the wood handle of the one I have.
Ok….as I said, I throw most of my experiments away but here’s what was laying on my desk from yesterday.
The tree sketch has nothing to do with the sketches to the left or right, the car was just an imaginary car because I picked up an Indigo pencil and wanted to see how it worked. You might begin to see why I throw these experiments away. Yes, I could do them on separate pages in a sketchbook but, once again, these are experiments, not products.
I was watching an artist interview and they were showing some of the artist’s work. One was a portrait of a woman. I picked up that big Cretacolor charcoal holder and started quickly sketching her. I had about 2 minutes and, as you can see, I ran out of time. Still, these quick attempts are invaluable in better training my visual cortex.
Ok…I looked in my sketchbooks, and I found these few sketches. In a toned book I found this one. All I can recall is that someone was doing a life-drawing portrait and I drew this one. I worked quickly and spent no more than 15 minutes on it. It shows 🙂
I had my Bargue book out and decided to quickly (emphasis here) draw the Bargue planar eye page. My experiment was to see if I could “see” all the angles quickly (no measurement or analysis). My performance was, at best, ok.
This gave me the idea to draw some real eyes and so I turned to the internet again, simply pausing videos when I got a close up image I could draw. These two were the results of that experiment.
I do apologize for not posting more regularly but, as you can see, there isn’t much in finished products coming from my pencil drawing. Maybe I need to get a pen out (grin).