Thursday, April 7, 2016

Making a Scene

It's one thing to draw an object.  It's another to put two (or more) objects "on stage" together and create a scene.  So I decided to give that a try, still experimenting with the Daniel Smith Indanthrone Blue and Burnt Sienna two-color combo.

In this scene, you can pretty much see how it goes at my house:  dog on couch.  Human on floor.

I turned on a bright light to cast some clearer shadows, so I could practice.

I grabbed a Staedtler fineliner 03, the two watercolors, and a waterbrush, and worked on Strathmore 500 mixed media paper.

First, I did a quick light contour with the pen.  Corrected some spots (in particular the person's right leg... you can see where I refigured the outline).

Then I mixed the paints--experimenting a lot with saturation, warmth versus cool, and so on as  tried to catch the shadows and values.

This took me roughly 30 minutes.  Longer than I would have out "in the field" to practice many scenes of people moving, but pretty fast for something stationary like this.

What I really like is that I paid close attention to contrast at points where I hoped the viewer's focus would go--the dog's head on the blanket, the person's head on the floor/pillow.

I'd like to continue to improve on all of it!   Just more practice.  One thing specifically, that I mentioned on day one of the homework, I think, is that I would like to figure out how to indicate the copper brindle on a dark brown/black dog.  I really like these two colors, because they mix up nicely to the variety of colors in the Dutch Shepherd coat.

I am so grateful to have spent  this fraction of an hour studying these beings I love in  such a restful state.  I'm kind of sorry this is a double-page spread in my sketchbook, as I actually think I'd frame it if I could.  What a wonderful gift drawing gives me, of attending to, and expressing, something I value so much!

This post comes from work I did in a class with Roz Stendahl, Drawing Practice:  Drawing Live Subjects in Public.  I recommend it!

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