Under 12 parsecs?

This is another Saturday sketch from St Paul’s Square in Birmingham again using ink marks to build texture and tone without wash or water.  It is clear there is more work needed to use just the varied marks themselves to narrate the scene.

I have switched inks to a permanent black carbon which may permit watercolour over it once dry.  I also want to use less colour, adding a few simple strokes in key areas, not colouring in the whole picture.  Less is more.

21 responses to “Under 12 parsecs?

  1. This is one of my favourite pictures of yours. This might sound weird but there is a tangible sense of movement in the leaves. I had to wiggle my glasses to check if I was seeing right:)

  2. We use permanent carbon black with watercolours regularly. I also use the coloured De Atrimentis document inks which are also permanent. They have a wider range of permanent colours which can be fun to play with.

  3. It has great detail, but you have carefully varied the intensity of the marks so different areas balance out. I like the coloured version. Perhaps something to try, if you are aiming for a ‘simpler’, ‘abstract’ look is to use something less defined – thick charcoal, the side of a conte crayon, puddles of ink, blocks of watercolour, smudging. It’s something I’ve grappled with too (no perfect solution yet!)

    • Yes I agree. However, the current exercise is to step back from smudging and blurring. I do that a lot using water soluble ink and water. The aim here is to take those pen marks, which are in principle sharp and defined, and build up surfaces and textures. Then the next step is to use fewer marks yet get more effect with less. So this is an exercise. But it’s slow, because I’m drawing once a week usually.
      I did a “studio” piece last night, started abstract drawing then swamped it in ink and water. I’m not sure where to go with it. I’ll post the current version and think on it.

      • I think I’m with you, there seemed to be some contradictions to start with. The method you are using (and have reiterated) is very interesting (start with many marks and then pull back to fewer). I automatically jumped to thinking of starting off as spare as possible, hence my comment. Something I should challenge myself on, interesting. I find it hard keeping up and expressing myself exactly in the comments section. No wonder speech came first! I’ve been looking back to the work in your June (10th) post. I really like them.

  4. Pingback: Giant seed pod eats famous gardener’s face | kestrelart

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