Last night, I had basically had it with technology. Between not being able to have full functionality at my main station and my mobile device constantly, randomly losing time, I decided to work on something which did not depend on high technology to get a good result.
I’m drafting this out before the fact. Right now I’ve been awoken by a really strong skunk smell, and the resulting commotion; it is just before dawn, here. Thus, I need to wait for good lighting, but if I play my cards right, maybe I can get this posted before I have to go.
This piece really…surprised me. I had been encouraged by my Professor in Creative Process to keep working at the “flower” angle, especially after I told him what flowers meant to me. What I did was intended as a mandala, but also works fairly well as an abstracted floral design.
This is done, so far, nearly entirely in HB pencil. The work to this point took about an hour and a half…but was really calming. I can, after all, do things independent of computers! (It just requires getting a bit dirty.) There was a slip-up near the beginning where I picked up an 8B pencil, thinking it was a 2B, though; I’m not sure that mark will come out, fully. Right now, for me, the question is which media to proceed with.
I’ve realized that I can do a value-rich underdrawing, coat it in clear gesso, and paint on top of it…but I’m not sure how gouache (or transparent watercolor) will perform on top of gesso. Plus, I have heard that my Scarlet Lake color (in gouache) may also be fugitive (which means it may fade if I display this piece without a UV protectant)…
I’m fairly certain that I don’t want to use acrylics on this.
I did the linework on a 6″x6″ watercolor paper block…not canvas; and the texture of my heavy body paints is such that I may lose detail if I use them. Transparent watercolor would be an ideal medium…if it weren’t for the messiness of the underlying drawing. I have a tendency to smudge my marks in pencil with my hand, so basically everything has at least a thin coating of graphite on it — not to mention the guidelines which I used to keep things close to even.
I have realized that I don’t want to just use the lineart, though. I want to have some guide as to values (value = the lightness or darkness of a tone), because I don’t want this to be completely flat. I could…go in with heavily diluted acrylics (using Glazing Medium), if I put clear gesso over the whole thing; then I could keep the underdrawing.
Or, I could erase as much unnecessary pencil as I could, then work at this with transparent watercolor, colored pencil, and use gouache for highlights.
Or I could go over the underdrawing with clear gesso and work with gouache on top, which is what I had initially planned. I’m not sure whether this will work, though. I’ve never used gouache on top of gesso, before; let alone clear gesso on top of watercolor paper.
I do have a throwaway piece of watercolor paper, though (it was flawed, so I cut it off the block before drawing this piece), with which I can test out my media. That seems like the logical next step, before deciding what media to use on the final piece…
Or, hey, I could just use graphite and other pencils over the whole thing. Maybe including watercolor pencil…