Sunday, June 29, 2008

Show and Tell: My Saturday

My Show and Tell covers yesterday. See others at Mel's project.

This is an incredibly hands on workshop and I am happy. She gives sets of reference pictures and then goes through the steps on each to maximize output; she checks each person after each step. She is insistent upon quick and decisive work; that meshes well with my own style.

Here are a photo of a photo, not an easy feat to do well, but I dislike using the scanner. Each of the cat drawings are done on plain white drawing paper.


Bear in mind how many times she said, "Make it look like a cat, not necessarily this cat. Nobody is going to see your preliminary drawings or the photo." Yeah, right. Why do I torture myself for the sake of fair and unbiased boggity journalism? You are privy to the inner sanctum as always at Churp, Churp.

Her first step is to make a value drawing. Often times, you can squint to see the blobs of light and dark.

The first is my quick impression. The second gets the proportions better.



After establishing values, the objective is choosing color. She chooses a palate that is broad and this first color sketch is to try out different colors to see what might work. She considers this one's chance to get ugly in the process and it should only take 15 minutes or so.

Good to practice more eyes. All the eyes look so much better in person! They sure can look evil out of context.

This final version is unfinished, but I think it captures the cat well. Plus, it is easy to see how this process makes a cleaner end product with better efficiency. She thinks finished products should take 2-6 hours. She said the average colored pencil artist takes 30 hours. Ridiculous.

We didn't have as much time to spend on the second reference photo and it shows, but then I don't like the composition as much anyway. Believe it or not, this is a lemon. In the original photo, it only looks slightly less orange. It was confusing to try to capture. It was also a little insulting - lemons were immediately my thing in watercolor, pastel, and oil, but not colored pencils.



This final product was done on a sanded pastel paper.
Funny, mine looks like an onion in the photograph!

All day, I found it hard not to be my aggressive pastel self and bear down on the color. With colored pencils, the first coat is very light. Well, they all are. Plain paper layers well, but the sanded paper will accept a dozen layers or more. The only time to bear down is when doing the final coat; the added pressure is called burnishing and will almost give a sealed look. If done too early, it uses all the tooth of the paper.

We have two more reference photos to work with today. I am bringing some of my own photographs in the hopes of doing one of those instead of both references. They are street scenes at night, which she really liked. It'll be fun to try on black paper.

11 comments:

Wishing 4 One said...

Wow, you did awesome! I love the drawings you reproduced, what an awesome job. Thanks so much for sharing. Oh and the cat is my favorite one!

evil-e said...

very good once again...you got some talent when it comes to laying it down on the canvas

eyes, though seemingly simple can be a real challange..keep practiciing

Sam said...

Wow - great pictures - I can practically see your thought processes as you work down the post showing your different pictures!

I need to go and show this blog to my Mum as she needs a bit more confidence in her painting!

Joanna said...

Very cool. Doenst it feel good to release your creative nitch?

Arian said...

Very cool! You did a great job!

Gianna said...

thank you so much for sharing your process....it's fantastic!!

Lee said...

Wow! Those look fabulous! I like that you shared the original image and the in between steps.

Keep up the great work!

Natalie Jane said...

So much talent out in the blogging world.

Tara said...

Wow, awesome drawings! I love that final shot of the cat especially!

Jess said...

Oooh, fun!!

I always disliked colored pencil. Black and white, charcoals, even PEN before colored pencil!!

Have fun, you're doing well!!

Kimberley said...

I really like the lemon picture you are very talented. Great Job!
Kim