Part 2, Project 2, exercise 1 – natural objects, detail and tone

I’m feeling enormous resistance to this exercise; partly because static objects bore the socks off me [and I know they shouldn’t but there you go], and partly because it takes two pairs of glasses to switch between the looking and the drawing [grr]. But, after having a word with myself about sucking it up and getting stuck in, I ripped a piece of bark off a large section of log I use as a door stop and deployed my secret weapon – a ‘brass rubbing’ of the surface to give me the guidelines.


This is 6B pencil + Faber-Castell coloured pencils + my trusty battery powered Derwent erasure. Next up, an equally trusty apple.

Ok, not too much of a pain in the neck although I may have strayed from the cross hatching brief a little. I’m quite pleased with the shape and the ‘appleness’ of it.


Courgette. I’m beginning to develop a method – basic lines of a single colour, then add layers of cross-hatching in the same (heavier) colour or a different one.


This red onion is more of that technique – red to begin, then an umber for where the skin has lost its colour and become papery, then yellow to highlight that difference a little, and finally blue to do the same for the red.


I thought this sweet potato would be a disaster. I was a little fatigued with drawing in this way, distracted by the people here to take down some old or opportunistic trees in the garden, and ready for lunch at least an hour before due to having to be up early to let them through. Didn’t turn out too badly, I reckon. They’re quite rough and rooty, with tiny peripheral roots coming off and a skin that’s variously smooth(ish), pocked, and shaped by its own internal structure. A bit like a pod even though it isn’t, and because it’s so dark, it’s quite hard to draw. I used my now world famous (aka newly acquired) layering technique with the primary colour at the base and subsidiary colours coming in on top. Where fine roots emerge from the body, I’ve erased a small channel in the colour then traced a tiny line within it for the root. Looking back on my previous work, I can see that I favour squiggles as a kind of hatching filler and these have crept in here.


I’m going to move on now to the next exercise – which turns out to be Project 3, Still Life. Onwards and upwards!





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