Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Second Cut - Drawing

I was terribly excited over yesterday's rose. It looked so real. Note the past tense. :-)

Painting begins with good direction, and I need to find that with accurate drawings. Not some simple contour but a tonality map. At least I'm pretty sure that's what I need now, and I suspect many artists use this method regularly. In plain English, planning is critical.

In that spirit, here's a drawing with some detail. I'll create a transfer and refer to flower as well as drawing when I pick up the brush.

Odyssey 2010 is coming soon! Just a short ways up the road from my home, I will be visiting the vendors on Saturday. Some will be there only on that day whereas others will stay for an additionally two days, giving me opportunity to spend even more. ;-)


  1. What do you mean "past tense"... uh-oh, what did you do? I thought yesterday's rose was a stunner- you captured the delicate veining in the petals and the color was absolutely delicious, if one can describe a color in that way!
    I also enjoyed seeing your sketches for the sweet pepperbush; I don't know why, but I am always immediately drawn (no pun intended) to the works that show the "process". I love to see the pencil lines under the layers of watercolor that show how the artist worked towards his/her vision and the swatches of test colors laid right next to the drawings.
    Odyssey 2010 looks fabulous; amazing collection of vendors- can't wait to hear about any and all of the treasures you find! I know I'd be putting a serious dent in my bank account after seeing some of the names of who will be selling/exhibiting their wares!
    Have a great time!

  2. Well, I have lots of time before I need to submit my final painting (Marcia's away and won't be back until Monday at the earliest), and I wasn't satisfied with the center details. Also didn't like seeing my graphite lines showing here and there. And, I get to use the first painting for testing with Neutral Tint or Payne's Gray shadowing. I saved most of the basic sketch and then relaxed into seeing a bit more.

    I so enjoyed my Sweet Pepperbush preparations and will save my work for next year. I do intend to work with the resulting seed pods that are coming about--possibly soon but for sure once they pick up their wintering over characteristics. This could become my first year-long study and I find that kind of exciting! :-)

    More soon on Odyssey 2010! Handmade paper, calligraphic themed T-shirts, handmade paper lampshades, John Neal ink supplies... Oh, it's gonna be fun! :-)

    Well, I have a nice new transfer on watercolor paper and it's time to lay down some initial washes. I love poking along with veining and deep shadows. I got lost in that for hours last night--a real surprise when I looked up at the clock.

  3. Not sure if I ever shared this, but one of my favorite shadowing mixtures is French Ultramarine Blue with light red. I found it years ago in a wonderful book by Margaret Stevens called "An Introduction to Drawing Flowers". She calls it "Botanical Gray" and it's one of those little tid-bits of info that literally changed the way I paint. I still rely on the mixture to this day!
    I applaud your decision to begin another rose- sometimes it is SO hard to let go of a piece that you've worked hard on and/or have fallen in love with but just know in your heart isn't quite right; Sometimes I think I learn the most when I "start over" and allow myself to take chances on the first painting that I would never have dared try otherwise. It's quite freeing!

  4. Thanks for the tip, Gretchen! I do want to explore shadowing mixes. I like WN Neutral Tint but it stains something awful--it's like laying down India ink. The Payne's Gray lifts like a dream for when I get a little blotchy. Of course, then I must watch out for washing it away. Ah, nothin's free...

    There's a tremendous amount of psychology at play here. I need to know that I can get through the drawing and painting before I can abandon some of my fear. This time around I'm not fretting so much and I'm quite pleased with where it's now going.

    Unless something whacks out, this one will be my keeper. I will now stop for the night and scan it up tomorrow for a post and a snapshot for Cornell. I am called upon to supply initial sketches and a mid-point in the painting, as well as the final piece. Oh, and then journal it up.

    Looks like I might be done by the weekend, just in time for Odyssey. And then, two new projects kick off! Ah, the mystery... ;-)