Thursday, 29 January 2009

Shattered! 11" x 13" Mixed Media on pastel paper, 2009

I sketched this guy not too long ago. The date on the sketch says 19th of December, 2008- so that wasn't long ago - still had memories of him.

I really wanted to capture him in a still but tense mood. He was sleeping and most likely snoring- could have been the result of a hard day at work or something else more personal......

I went about this one, thus

1. Start sketching directly with daler rowney hard pastels on dark grey pastel paper.

2. I then add tones with the hard pastels.

3. When I have enough information for a balanced tonal face, I switch to soft pastels

4. With the soft pastels I make the face richer with more colour strokes are added wildly to project the mood.

5. When I have enough colour on the whole surface I re-draw the main features with the Pitt extra soft oil base pencil.

6. Thought I would end this with the chalk pastels but it still lacks the punch I need to see, so I switch to wax crayons.

7. With the wax crayons I can get more permanent marks and it also binds the chalk below.

8. With the wax crayons I feel satisfied and call it quits before the ruin...........

This transformation again is done without any colour reference but just a love and passion for human faces and everything about them!

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

"Remembering what he told me", 5" x 7", Mixed Media on watercolour board, 2009

This is another transformation, I can vividly remember sketching this girl because I sketched her this month. It was an evening in the train and I was on my way to London Bridge. My eyes just caught her green and black hair.

I have gone about this one as follows.

1. Sketched her face and main features with H pencil (very hard pencil)

2. I then use a wet on wet technique with watercolour to almost finish this piece in watercolour, but when it dries I am not happy with the fussy wet on wet look.

3. Then I decide to add some details with a carbon pencil, still not good!

4. I introduce water resistant wax crayons and I seem to enjoy the intensity and spontaneity it gives the piece

5. I continue working all over the piece with the wax crayons in an excited passionate way, stroking haphazardly.....

6. I throw in some detail around the eyes and mouth with coloured pencils.

7. Then I finish off with some black accents of the carbon pencil again, need to stop as it gets to point I don't know where to put the next stroke!

Saturday, 10 January 2009

Weathered, Oil on Raw Linen Canvas Board, 8" x 8", 2009

I sketched this very interesting looking man in December 2006. I can't remember much about him, but while looking through some of my archived sketchbooks, he seemed to look weathered by the storms of life!

I have painted this in a technique very commonly known as "Alla Prima"- this is when you start with oil and finish it in one sitting without going back to it. So it has a certain freshness and spontaneous look in the end. Its quite a while I used oil so I struggled a bit.

This was my process

1. I decide to start this without any drawing.

2. I decide to use only 3 colours and white (YELLOW- Yellow Ocher, RED-Terra Rosa, BLUE- Ultramarine Blue.

3. I attack the canvas by just thinking his head was a lump of clay, so, no details just painting shapes in three mass tones.

4. I soften all passages where the three basic tones meet.

5. Then I start sketching into the painting, some of the basic details like eyes, nose and mouth.

6.I make sure I don't over work the details, but add a few smaller strokes where needed to bring out the form.

7. I have a look in reverse through my hand mirror to see where anything has gone wrong.-I correct basic alignments.

8. All through this exercise I have no colour reference, I just wanted this guy to look worn out so I mixed all the three colours into each other as much as possible to get a wide variety of tones and colour temperature shifts.

9. Finally I couldn't resist but sketch into the wet oil with a charcoal pencil to get in some details(his strands of hair )that my impatience with oil will not allow me to do because it drys so slowly.