Thursday’s Drawing – Strands of Silk, final


Here she is, my final second seascape in graphite and again I’m amazed at how rich a seascape can be developed with this medium.

Strands of Silk (6×9) was drawn on Strathmore Bristol Vellum using graphite pencils 4H, 2H, HB, B and 2B for their reflective qualities.  The seagulls were done in carbon (a flat quality) keeping them in front of the waves.  For the sea-foam spray some were drawn with dark and light values, and others (like the puffs of spray) were done with a kneaded eraser for larger and lighter spray.  The back water was brushed out and layered back in several times with graphite to give that area of water a darker and richer feel.

Thank you for staying with the project and checking in.

Strands of Silk, final

Strands of Silk, final

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Personal Challenge – Rocks/Boulders: Brown River Rocks, #12


Here’s #12, getting close to my goal of 15 studies of rocks and boulders.

Brown River Rocks is an oil pastel (5×7) painted on beige Mi-Teintes pastel paper using mainly Senneliers brand of OPs.  Because it’s a small painting clay shapers were used to move the paint around the surface.

Brown River Rocks

Brown River Rocks

Reference image was from Jim Pierce with pmp.

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Portrait Drawing – Study of Mrs. John Beals Mills


Continuing with my fascination of studying John Singer Sargent portrait drawings.  One of his portraits, Mrs. John Beals Mills, illustrate just how brilliant of an artist he was with a loose style for backgrounds and incidental elements, to his focus on the face for the precision accomplished with soft and hard edges, and value ranges.  Incredible work.

My drawing study of Mrs. John Beals Mills, 12×9, was done in charcoal (love this stuff for portraits) using both vine and pencil, and a kneaded eraser.  This free-hand drawing took about 3 – 4 hours, mainly because I wanted to be more precise with her face proportions.

My purpose in studying John Sargent Singer is to learn portraits in this loose style and hopefully develop character to individuals that I may draw at a later date.

Have a great weekend, back to oil pastel rock studies on Monday (four more studies to go) ~

Study of Mrs. John Beals Mills

Study of Mrs. John Beals Mills

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Thursday’s Drawing – Strands of Silk, #3


Well, I pretty much drew and photographed this update in the dark as we in the Dallas/Fort Worth area experienced a fast-moving very severe storm (lot of structural damage, w/golf ball size hail and 80 mph winds).  In my little area by DFW airport, we had possible tornadic activity – with little to no rain (doesn’t help our drought at all, just a lot of destruction).

Worked on Strands of Silk today (9×6) on Strathmore Bristol Vellum paper.  The entire scene is being drawn with graphite pencils (2H, HB, B, and 4B), some was done with the pencils and other areas applied with a dirty tortilium to spread the graphite in small spots. Graphite is being used for its reflective nature.

Next week I will gently brush (camel-hair brush) some of the foreground and middle-ground flat water areas to smooth out the strokes, working to get the water and sea-foam trails to take on a silk-like appearance and brushing is one way to achieve this.  The sea-foam areas will be developed and a couple of surprise elements for added interest, I think that the drawing will be completed next Thursday.

Thoroughly enjoying drawing this wave scene, thanks for checking in ~

Strands of Silk, #3

Strands of Silk, #3

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Revised Study of Mrs. Richard Sears Portrait Drawing


I couldn’t leave well-enough alone and just had to go back in to see if I could work the portrait drawing a bit more to get a closer likeness to John Singer Sargents’ drawing of Mrs. Richard Sears.  Let me just say, lol – she has become my own Mrs. Sears (older and a bit stiff she doesn’t seem to be as relaxed as Sargents’ as a slightly tilted head is very tough to draw) but I’ll take it and move on.

Several features were worked on:  her nose angled more downward, lips and chin brought in slightly, and finally her neck muscles redefined.  Lower values were brought in to darken aspects of her hair and to draw hair strands, and to emphasize her dress fabric folds and rose decoration (used 4B and 8B).  At this point I can’t totally change the angle of her head, too late – one of the lessons learned here, get it right before anything else is drawn so changes can be made.

The paper finally said enough already, it couldn’t handle any more graphite.  Charcoal can’t be added on top of graphite, because the graphite’s slippery surface or I would have used it for the darks.  Sargent did his drawing in charcoal and got a spectacular result.

Here is the updated result and original Mrs. Sears study.

Revised Study of Mrs. Richard Sears

Revised Study of Mrs. Richard Sears

Study of Mrs. Richard Sears

Study of Mrs. Richard Sears

 

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Graphite Pencil Study of Mrs. Richard Sears (original by John Singer Sargent)


An important purpose to studying John Singer Sargent portrait drawings is to learn from his loose but confident and purposeful strokes, because his work is spectacular.  From my readings I learned that during 1910 through 1925 Sargent produced some 500 drawings, and many of the portraits are charcoal AND completed in two-hour settings.  His results – stunning.

Today’s drawing is a 9×6 study of Mrs. Richard Sears (Sargent drew in 1912).  My study was done in graphite pencils (F and 2B).  I’ve decided I’d rather draw these studies in charcoal because of how quickly you can cover the surface with a single swipe, and I like the striking visual impact between the lights and darks.

Some personal assessment of this study:  graphite for this study probably wasn’t the best choice, the value ranges were limited (should have used darker pencils ), charcoal would have produced a more striking result especially where her hair is concerned; the tilt to her head is slightly off; I aged her some; her lovely hair style changed; charcoal would have given a darker background to allow Mrs. Sears to standout prominently.  LOL, enough already!  I’ll draw Mrs. Sears again, I learned a lot with this exercise and can improve on this study.

I went way over my one hour limit today, graphite is a much slower medium to work with.  In any event, here she is ~

Study of Mrs. Richard Sears

Study of Mrs. Richard Sears

 

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Personal Challenge – Rocks/Boulders, #11 Wharariki South Island, NZ


#11 in the rock challenge.  This special scene got me back to painting the sea, it may be small in size, but for the time being I was happy to feel the water again using oil pastels.

Wharariki (oil pastel, 5×7) is one of those iconic scenes of New Zealand that I’ve wanted to paint for a while.  The boulders are massive showing the wear and tear of having gotten slammed by nasty storms.  I love that the boulders are close enough so some of the details show, including moss/seaweed growth from the sea water and atmospheric moisture (check out how high that green seaweed goes!).

Only four paintings to go in the challenge ~ thanks for checking in.

Wharariki South Island, NZ, #11

Wharariki South Island, NZ, #11

Reference image was from Lindy Clarkson, a great photographer with pmp.

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My Charcoal Study of Helen Sears (original portrait by John Singer Sargent)


After drawing Old Monk, and some encouragement from others, I decided to give more consideration to drawing more portraits, no so much standard straight-forward portraits, but ones drawn with a loose style showing the character of the person and loosely define clothing and backgrounds.  At least this is my goal.

Charcoal and pencil portrait drawings by John Singer Sargent are incredible pieces of art, that are exactly the style I’ve been looking for to study and learn from.  Mr. Sargent used edges like no other, loose and soft for the background and clothing, but conveying accurately the faces.  His combination of light/darks and edges is for me exceptional.  This is not to say that his oil portraits don’t compare, they are tremendous works, but I’m personally attracted to his portrait drawings and have decided to study them.

My first study is of Sargents’ charcoal drawing of Helen Sears, (1912).  I was attracted to this drawing because of how effectively he used lighting and edges to illustrate the darkness of the scene with her bulky hat, heavy clothes and yet we still see someone who is feminine, but proper for the time period.  This intrigued me because of how dark and unforgiving charcoal can be in drawings – his use of charcoal is exciting to me.

My drawing was done in free-hand using charcoal on Strathmore sketch paper (12×9) with a set time limit of one-hour.

My Study of Helen Sears

My Study of Helen Sears

This first study is for Prospero – thanks for the encouragement to draw more portraits!

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Thursdays Drawing – Strands of Silk, #2


Thursday already?  Where has the time gone ~

Long silk strands of sea-foam that drapes over and down the incoming wave have started to be developed in this graphite drawing (6×9).  Working the values ranges properly will be critical if I expect to get the kind of water-effects I’m looking for with this seascape.  Graphite will be the primary medium in this pencil drawing – 2H, HB, B were used today.

Thanks for checking in ~

Strands of Silk, #2

Strands of Silk, #2

 

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Personal Challenge, Rocks/Boulders – #10 Chagrin Falls, OH


#10 in my challenge is a scene from Chagrin Falls, OH – what attracted me about the scene was the stack of rocks highlighted by the beautiful waterfalls.

Chagrin Falls, an oil pastel (7×5) was painted on black Mi-Teintes Pastel Paper – the paper was perfect for creating a dark atmosphere as the base of the scene, letting the stack rocks standout and the waterfall punctuate the senses.  Mainly used Senneliers brand of OPs, as well as Neopastels and Holbeins.

Only five studies to go ~

Chagrin Falls, #10

Chagrin Falls, #10

The reference image is from Michele Long of pmp.

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Posted in Challenges: Subject Matter Studies, OPs New Paintings, Rocks/Boulders | Tagged , , , | 29 Comments