Coloured pencils on Arches Aquarelle hot-pressed 300 gsm paper.
A stroll together down Pontocho lane at dusk as the lanterns and neon signs start popping on; this is a love story. The drawing is small in size yet big in heart; a Kyoto dreamscape.
Here is the paper I used – for the first time. It took the pencils beautifully. Information on where I sourced it is on my Art Materials page.
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Coloured pencils on Arches Aquarelle paper.
Anxiety went into this drawing. As I have written in past posts, some drawings just glide to the finish line with ease. Not this one. It was a real struggle. Colours were pushed and pulled, added to, subtracted, and modified ad infinitum in the quest for balance and desired temperature. I wanted muted winter colours but I didn’t want any mute to turn into either murk or muck.
Yesterday it became kill-or-cure time; the final push. The result is that while I like “Winter Light”, I’m still a little wary of it. I need to put it away in a folder for a while before seeing it again with totally fresh eyes.
The setting is Hanamikoji-dori (Flower-viewing Street) in Gion. It was a dull and drizzling February day. I had just arrived from Australia and the source photo for this was the very first photo taken after two planes, a train and a taxi deposited me in Gion. Such a subtle scene was calming after several months of Western Australian summer glare. (Sunglasses could remain in hotel room.)
I saw on social media the other day that art is a good replacement for meditation. Is that so? Perhaps, thought I, rather cynically. When one is struggling with a piece and using all one’s powers of problem-solving and analysis to pull it together (not necessarily with success), it is blooming hard work and anything but meditative.
After much reflection, I am bound to admit that this drawing did not work out. It has some good points but compositionally, it is flawed. I think the main problem is the area dividing the main lantern with the second lantern. The picture has this great divide which results in two separate halves as opposed to one cohesive whole.
POSTSCRIPT: Written on Christmas Day 2015. Yesterday I figured out what I hadn’t liked about the drawing and I managed to fix it. I had misread information on the source photo so of course I wasn’t able to draw it in correctly. Once I realised my mistake I corrected it on the drawing. I now believe the drawing works perfectly.