Tuesday, 8 April 2008

Chestnut - a horse portrait

My forum's Monthly Drawing Project for April is a photograph of a horse. I know nothing about the horse other than I saw it lying down on a bed of straw as I walked near the Grand Union canal one cold and frosty January morning.

I'm quite pleased with my effort to draw him in pencil but I recognise two significant mistakes in the composition. I shouldn't have drawn the whole of his body and I shouldn't have tried to draw the straw he's laying on. The 'project' really calls for us to be loyal to the photograph, and that was therefore my first consideration, but as a portrait, artistic licence would have been better served by drawing his head and shoulders only, I think.

Friday, 4 April 2008

Enjoying Pencil.

For so long as I've been enjoying art (6 or 7 years on and off), I have always had a special leaning towards pencil drawing, but I've avoided trying to do anything too ambitious. I've recently tried a number pieces that have challenged my limited capabilities.

The Duchess of Montrose contains more detail than I have ever attempted before. This engine has fond memories for me because it was one that I had in model form as a boy. It was one of the Hornby 00 range and I had quite a nice set up back in the late 50's, early 60's.

The fist is one I copied from an art book. The outline was not so hard to draw but I did find the shading to be quite challenging. The shading gives the hand solidity and dimension, as well as displaying the veins, and the whole effect is one of a hand being lit from above. It's not exciting as far as drawings go, but it was an interesting exercise nonetheless.

Finally, my jacket. It has a silky quilted lining and I wanted to see if I could convey that silky sheen in a black and white pencil drawing. Though I think others could have done it better, I am not disappointed with the result.

If you are a beginner with pencil or any other drawing or painting medium, you might be interested in visiting my web site. You may also be interested in joining my art forum. It is run for beginners by beginners, so we're all in the same boat and help each other where we can.

What happened to March?

Once upon a time I had this silly notion that I would keep a blog and post to it most days. It sounded like fun and surely couldn't be hard. Duh? Little did I appreciate that there's not always time in a busy day to sit online tapping out useless thoughts in the futile hopes that they may be read by anyone. When I do break away from my day job and household chores long enough to pursue something more pleasurable, my first thoughts turn to my web site. Is everything ok there? Have I been hacked? Have I had many visitors today? Does anything need doing maintenance-wise? Then it's into my forum to catch up on the posts. Read everything that's new, toss out a few comments in reply and check that no 'undesirables' are flooding the place with spam. Pastimes like Photography, Drawing and Painting seem to be harder than ever to make time for, and the blog ... well, it's now April and I'm staggered to see that I last posted in February. Clearly this is one of my pastimes that must be marked 'Must try harder'.