Work in Progress 3: Quiet

Work in Progress 1

Work in Progress 1

For the past three weeks I have been working on the drawing “Quiet”.  I photographed the drawing eight times during the period I was working on it.  You are invited to look at the progression from  start until  finish.  Click on the images to enlarge them if you wish to look at the finer details.

Work in progress 2

Work in progress 2

Work in progress 3

Work in progress 3

Work in progress 4

Work in progress 4

Work in progress 5

Work in progress 5

Work in progress 6

Work in progress 6

work in progress 7

work in progress 7

"Quiet" the finished drawing.

“Quiet” the finished drawing. 425 x 425 mm, 2013.

During the drawing I noted down a few points which I wanted to add to this page about my methods.  In no particular order here they are:

I don’t rule lines.  This is something I have learned over time because I used to rule lines but decided that they looked wrong somehow…too static.

I use my pencil lightly when I am layering colour over colour.  I am not trying to obliterate the colours underneath.   My touch is light and I do not try to fill every space with colour.  Each layer is full of spaces, letting the colours beneath  poke through the colour on top.

You might not realise in a finished piece but there are many times during the work when I surrender control.  For instance, a good place to look is the road to see what I am talking about.  I am not doing fiddly small strokes to render every bit of light and shade in the bitumen.  Rather, I am standing up and using big gestural sweeps of the pencils, crossing and recrossing lines with various colours.  It is exhilerating and there is plenty of room for error.   I like to work to music and get carried away with it. I am working with my whole arm, not just the fingers on the end of it – and I’m working fast and furious.

In every drawing there are parts which are extremely controlled interspersed with loose surrender.  The surrender is needed (in my opinion) so that the drawing lives.

Hence there is always danger in my drawing – for me I mean.  I feel like I am walking a tightrope and am not sure if I will make it to the other side or fall off.  Plenty of times I fall off.   If it were not so, it would be boring.

November 2013:  This drawing was awarded an Honorable Mention in Colored Pencil Society of America art award ‘Fall ArtSpectations 2013’.  The website is http://www.cpsa.org/artspectations-fall-2013-award-winners

Related page:  Subject 1: Kyoto to Paris

Related posts are Quiet and New Work in Progress Page

12 Responses to Work in Progress 3: Quiet

  1. Robyn says:

    Thank you for sharing your work Julie, and the tips. I really like being able to zoom in closer to your work for the close up look. I think you have a winner!!!

  2. Robyn says:

    Juile, may I ask, what materials (paper and pencils) have you used for this piece?

    • Hi Robyn, I suggest you look at my page ‘Art Materials’ (just go back to the top of the page to find it). It tells in detail the materials I use for all my drawings, this one included. I always use the same paper and pencils.

  3. Malcolm says:

    HI Julie, yet another magnificent example of your work. I am never quite sure whether I am inspired or intimidated. Whichever is the case its a wonderful image. In an earlier blog you said that you never use blender pencils or solvent. How do you believe using these would change the images you like to produce. In an earlier discussion you also talked about that first layering of colour when all you are interested in is ‘filling in the spaces with colour’. In doing so do you start with a light shade of the colour (e.g. the blue in a kimona) I try to match the tone of the actual image ?.
    Once again your comments are greatly appreciated
    best wishes

    Malcolm

    • Hi Malcolm,
      Regarding blender pencils and solvent, I had a half hearted play with a blender pencil once but it just didn’t interest me. The effect that some CP artists get with solvents is an air-brushed effect. It is slick – and to be honest, I don’t fancy it! I don’t want ultra-smooth work. I also had a wee play with a solvent but again, it didn’t do anything for me so I threw the bottle away. Maybe I could learn to make cool effects with solvents but I don’t have the interest or urge to try.

      When I am filling in the spaces, which I am doing currently actually, I start (as you say) with a light shade of the colour. If I try to match, say, the blue of a kimono, it is only in the most basic way. For example I would be seeing if it was a green blue or a pink blue. But I know that it will be completely covered over in the end so even if I use the wrong blue at the start, it does not matter at all.

  4. Malcolm says:

    Hi Julie, Believe me when I say that the answers are greatly appreciated

    best wishes

    Malcolm

  5. Malcolm says:

    Hello Julie once again

    In an earlier reply to Robyn the question of the paper you used came up. As you suggested I have looked at your page on “Art Materials” and would like to know if this paper can be purchased within Australia, and if so, how.

    best wishes

    Malcolm

    • Hi Malcolm, I googled Magnani in Australia and got all the details – which I put on the Art Materials page so that everyone can see. http://www.magnaniartpapers.com.au is the website. james@magnani.com.au is the email. Phone 03 9689 5660 or 0414 797 929 to speak to James. Address is 120 Cowper Street, Footscray. I asked Jacksons Art Supplies in Fremantle to get the paper in for me; no doubt they got it from James – next time I’d go direct to James…probably it would cost me less.

  6. Malcolm says:

    Hi Julie, thanks for the reply, unfortunately circumstances have arisen for me that may mean my involvement with coloured pencils is going to come to an abrupt end (and I have only just purchased a brand new set of Caran d’Arche luminous pencils). I will know soon.

    best wishes

    Malcolm

  7. Malcolm says:

    Thanks for your concern Julie I really appreciate that it should matter to you. It isn’t a health issue but some changed circumstances may well make time something of a scarce commodity which, in turn, will make taking on something as new (for me) as CP work difficult.

    best wishes

    Malcolm

    • The thing about pencils is that you can pick them up, work with them briefly and put them down again until you next have time. With paint, it will dry, go hard and crack up on the palette. But pencils just quietly wait for you, no harm done, until you are ready for them again.

  8. Malcolm says:

    Hi Julie, thanks so much for your timely comments. What you say about pencils is so true and perhaps they do have the advantage of always just simply being there waiting. I am sure I will have another question for you before you go away so I wont say bon voyage for the moment.

    best wishes

    Malcolm

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