Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Evening Shadows

Here is a quick study (less than an hour) on clouds in the early evening just as the sun is thinking about setting. The clouds are backlit by the sun and are darker than the sky. The trees are mostly in shadow and most of the details are subdued. This is a small drawing only 4.5" x 7"

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Book Cover!

I just had to share with you all! Here is the cover of my book!!! ENJOY!


Sunday, November 12, 2006

My Mind is in the Clouds

Step 6 - I worked a bit more on the cloud heads and created a bit more unity. Then it was onto the landscape. I deviated a bit from the actual reference photo, attempting to make a compositionally balanced view. It is acceptable for a first attempt as such a drawing and there will be more studies in future that will explore the rolling hills of Iowa.


Step 5: I have completed the clouds and will start working on the landscape. In-between corn fields Iowa has some beautiful rolling hills and valleys.

Step 4: This is where the fun starts. Erasing highlights and adding shadows, 'sculpt' the clouds. I switch to a 2H .5 mech pencil and a tortillion.

Step 3: Using erasers, I start lifting the clouds out of the toned sky. Each eraser will create a different effect. A plastic eraser will lift off nice blocks of graphite, a pencil eraser will lift fine lines and blu-tak will lift soft wispy areas.

Step 2: Using a chamois, I blend the graphite smooth. You can see how messy I get on the borders. That's okay because I want the graphite to smooth out to the very edges of the drawing.

Step 1: Use a loose-hold on your pencil. Hold the pencil 1/2 back on the barrel and let the weight of the pencil create the stroke. The purpose of this is to create an even light stroke. Using multiple layers of cross-hatching, I build up the layers of graphite. I am using a B .5 mech. pencil for crosshatching.

Ever since fellow artist MLeonard, member of Artpapa, challenged me to include a sky in the Ivy Church drawing, I have been keeping my mind in the clouds. I am continually amazed at the beauty of just looking up in the sky! Over the past couple of years, I have been learning the importance of toning the sky and adding clouds as part of overall compositional improvement in my landscapes. The emphasis in this panoramic landscape is the clouds. I think I could spend hours and hours fiddling with each puff of white!

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Zach - GoKart

Opps...We are missing a trophy! Thank goodness I had just enough room left on the paper to add this award!

Final - With completing the helmet and blending the area around the helmet and car, I believe this drawing is completed!

Wip 5 - I got up bright and early this morning to jump right into drawing again. Got a cup of coffee and I'm good to go! The car and trophy are now completed. When working in dark areas, black is never just black. Instead I concentrate on finding the subtle forms within those dark areas. They may eventually look black but if look closely the form can still be defined. This is a key technique in creating 3 dimensionality. A good example of this is the tires and tire wall areas. I have included a close-up of the go-kart as well.

Wip 4 - I'm starting to work on the go-kart...

Wip 3 - Finished the suit and started on the trophy. I am blending the three images together with a blended method. I apply graphite, blend it with a tortillion, then use a plastic eraser to smear and erase a texture into the areas. By doing this the three separate objects become unified together. I still need to work in some of the details into the trophy but it's starting to emerge on the paper.

Wip 2 - Moving right along, I finished the hair and have started on the suit.

Wip 1 - I have started on Zack's face. Using a B .5 mechanical pencil I lay down the shadows and darker areas, then chamois smooth. I then start lifting and shaping the facial features with blu-tak and more layers of graphite. I still need to work on his hair and ears, but I think I have his likeness down.

This is a commission that I am doing of a young man who won 3 national go-kart championships this past year. What proud parents he must have! Here is a general compositional mock-up of the drawing layout.

My Artist Daughter

Had to sneak this photo into my blog. My daughter, Becky, is a Junior at Grandview College. Her major is Art. After looking at this picture, I have no doubt why she changed her major. I am very proud of her and her accomplishments. And I just wanted to share with the world, my daughter's painting.....

BTW - Currently we have six cats co-habitating with us, so one of them HAD to show up in the photo. This is Becky's kitty - Toro.