For Rent (detail)
Mixed media (pen and ink, brush and ink, white acrylic gouache, acrylic inks; on brown paper).
This was a sketch done for a workshop demonstration a few years ago at Foothills Art Center. I'd brought it to a convention a few weeks ago, and a curious fellow asked about my thought process and sequence. Here is a step-by-step of the thought and work behind this picture:
This was done on a scrap of paper--even before I had the complete idea for the finished piece. I was just trying to get a lively stance for the tree. At this point I knew I wanted a bowing Ent-like tree in the picture, but not much else. I like to let details emerge as I work.
2. Choosing forms
This is what's inside my head. After the gesture, I try to visualize the forms that will make up the picture. The idea for the bird arrived after the gestures. ( Again, I don't actually draw this onto the paper; here just trying to show my thought-process.)
3. Thinking about connection of forms
More progress inside my head as I piece the thing together. Sometimes I will actually draw this part--lightly--onto the gesture, especially if I'm unsure of the forms.
4. Pen and ink.
I draw it out with light pencil--I like H leads--then I often use a fine brush to outline the piece. Next, I begin cross-hatching the values with the crow quill pen.
5. White highlights.
When most of the values are established, the highlights are added with white acrylic gouache. In this case I wanted the light to come from the egg.
6. Colored acrylic inks.
I thin them down a bit with water so they don't ruin the highlights. After the color dries, I go back in with pen and ink to deepen the dark areas if needed.
Feel free to email me if any of this needs clarification. I definitely don't mean to leave out info or be purposely unclear or ambiguous.
I'm doing a watercolor workshop in May--great for children's illustrators or anyone who wants to learn new watercolor techniques! Check it out here:
And thanks for reading!