Sunday, February 21, 2016

Sunday Sketching - The Value of Pathfinding...finding my way

I have been attending a weekly open studio workshop, wherein we are currently watching Ken Hosmer's Famous Ink Sketch DVD and learning how to do three value pathfinding sketches using a Tombow N15 pen, a brush and water.  And practice using the techniques demonstrated, and learned.

This was my first attempt of an adobe house on Bristol Smooth paper, using a print from the photo he used in the DVD. Just like with handwriting, all of ours looked different, depending upon artistic style and yes, skills.  I was in great and talented company.

You can see where I tried to start the pathway in the lower left corner and exit on the upper right side

Second try in my watercolor paper sketchbook.

Watercolor sketchbook
I liked how the black ink turned into additional colors, too
Then I practiced over the weekend with a daffodil at home - Bristol Smooth paper
We hadn't seen the flower section of the DVD yet...

Just add water!
On Friday we watched the flower and the animal section of the DVD. . .wherein Ken demonstrated "suggesting" the lines and not outlining completely.   Oh, OK.  That makes sense.  I still liked my daffodil, though.  Also seeing him work again with the Tombow pen helped.

His technique was beginning to sink in, and I was starting to understand in this hodgepodge of plumeria blooms.

Using Bristol Board.  Had to wrap my brain around seeing all the middle values in the photograph and translating to the value sketch.  Which I corrected with the blooms by making them darker, and made it really pop.
(Disregard the leaves, for at that point, I wanted to try another photograph - of a pansy.)

I thought would be less complicated.  

Need to practice and work on "suggesting and simplifying, " and being a creator not a recorder in composition -- but I'm making progress.  I tried to use more lost and found edges. 
I did the pansy in my watercolor paper sketchbook.  It really does bring out the colors of the Tombow N15 black ink more so than the Bristol Smooth.

I am certainly beginning to understand and to see the value of doing value sketches to improve the look and feel of potential watercolor painting projects, before starting to paint.  Seeing and learning to link the shapes of darks and lights values, along with creative cropping, helps in the composition of a painting.   Ken ascertains that ink sketches are easier to paint from than a photograph and it is easier to choose your colors.   I am definitely starting to see that way.  

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