Using charcoal, these are 3-5 minute drawings of a still-life composition. The point was to try not to dwell on details, rather respond freely with the charcoal to draw lines to mimic the movement of your eye over the objects. I find it unnatural to be so spontaneous in my drawings, as the drawing I use for my flower paintings is very considered. I'm also not used to the medium of charcoal as I haven't used charcoal since high school art class !
These drawings were using charcoal and took around 5 or 6 minutes each, again of a still-life composition. The point was to block in shadow areas and define the light and dark areas in the subject using "massed gesture lines" and to spatially define the form using light and dark without too much detail. I found this exercise enjoyable and am getting happier with the results of this spontaneous type of drawing style. I think I've been able to convey a bit of a sense of tone and illusion in this series of drawings within a short time limit. I'm trying to not be afraid or intimidated of the boldness of the charcoal medium. I've been trying to keep my eyes on the subject as much as possible and am starting to get the hang of the tonal capabilities of charcoal without needing to smudge it everywhere !
Welcome to my blog ! Its' not quite the start of the New Year, but close enough, so I'm going to share my journey here in blog form for those who are interested in following my art journey and even for those considering embarking on one of your own. It's Summer school holiday time here in Australia, so as I have two young children home from school until February, I probably wont be able to start any new major watercolour paintings until the house returns to some peace and quiet. However, I am going to do some practice drawing and sharpen up my skills of perception and artistic response by working through some exercises, mostly from the book "Creative Drawing" by Howard J Smagula. You can join me in these exercises if you like. Feel free to post your progress and leave comments. I'm a self taught artist, keen to improve, not an art teacher, so these blogs are not necessarily instructional, just a way to share my journey....
A copy of the book I'll be using for my drawing exercises.
The first few projects are to practise gesture drawing. These are rapid line drawings made in order to record basic visual information in a short period of time. They're supposed to be full of energy and are concerned with communicating the essence of an idea, not its detail. The point is to define the basic shape, proportion and position in space in a fluent and expressive manner.
The first few exercises are drawings of bedsheets draped over chairs. I've used charcoal on paper and tried to capture the flowing line forms and suggest the shadow areas. These drawings took around 2-3 minutes each.
I think the drawings have turned out a bit more jagged and were supposed to be more flowing, as in drapery mode, but I think there is energy in the lines and I tried to use my whole arm and utilise the whole page. Need to work on using longer, more flowing line...
Sacha Grossel is a practising Visual Artist from Australia.