reflections

This was an attempt on toned paper to capture the dark reflections of trees in a brook running through the woods.

I see this drawing was done two years to the day from this reflection on the outcome of the 2015 general election.  Then, fear of a progressive coalition including the Scots drove the English to give the Conservatives the majority it needed to blunder into the pit of deceit and despair that is Brexit.

This time Labour stand out with a brave and hopeful manifesto of investment in people.

Sadly, the polls still suggest that people will choose the bleakness and self-serving incompetence of the Conservatives: perhaps hope hurts more than savage certainty.

Who are these characters?

Dr Sketchy’s was themed on characters from Quentin Tarantino films.  That would be those films I have never watched.  Even with months of notice, I never found time to work through the canon.  So from tagging on facebook and a little searching online, I can tell you that these are (in no particular order) Santanico Pandemonium, Mia Wallace, Stuntman Mike, Mr Pink, Jules and Vince and these are played by Liberty Pink, Mysti Vine, Kitten von Mew and Trampy Holford.

I cut down my drawing kit to Ingres textured toned paper, graphite stick, conte crayons and black ink brush pen.  Stuntman Mike was the last and most sparing of the images.  Mr Pink (Liberty Pink in false beard) was the first.

I drew the two ten minute poses by Kitten von Mew side by side.  After these I started working larger.

Mysti Vine (posing with her green companion “Sid”) gave me a challenge – skin reflects light with so many more hues than do clothes. I struggled to simplify this to two or three tones which would have been more effective on the dark blue paper.

The diminutive Liberty Pink posed as hired thug Vince (John Travolta in Pulp Fiction) and Mysti Vine as Jules declaimed from the Bible before shooting us with a banana.

I am not sure who was the gun toting bloke who warmed up before Liberty came on to sing at the start.

Dr Sketchy’s yesterday migrated unexpectedly and with an hour or so to spare up the road to CherryReds café.  The food looks great: I’ll make a point of going back sometime.  Despite this (and it must have been a real challenge to the organisers), as always the team put on a great act.  I saw lots of interesting good sketches round the room.

light on trees

In recent sketches I have sought to capture the effects capture sunlight on and behind trees using my standard field kit of conte crayons, ink and water.  In the earlier sketches, I drew on textured white paper, dampened so the crayons layer thickly and reworked the drawing later with paint.  Then I started explore the use of toned paper, struggling to leave unworked negative spaces to form part of the image.  The most direct inspiration for this is from the recent sketches of professional artist and blogger, Rosie Scribblah as well as the current explorations of trees in other media by my occasional art buddy, outsideauthority.  Unlike my previous drawings, ones shown here are all completed in the field, not reworked at home.

Last week, returning from drawing at the burial ground, I found a footpath along fields which skirted Nunnery Wood, fenced off on the western side.  The evening sun filtered through the trees and last year’s undergrowth glowed.  In the first sketch,  at the top, the tan surface just about shows through between the short strokes of grey, an attempt to suggest the sky broken by branches into intersecting polygons.  In the second sketch, the surface shows through the light strokes showing the fields but I still could not bring myself to leave the paper untouched.

The next two were done today, closer to home in Sidden Hill Wood.  The low sun slanted in from the left so the many small branches and early leaves scintillated in the background and the nearer trunks glowed green and gold.  I drew on machine-textured Ingress paper.  Having completed the first as well as I thought I would achieve, for the second I tried to  abstract the woods into simple blocks of lightly applied colour through which the toothed paper still shows.