Sketchtravel: My page in progress
The finished pencil page. Color will be added.
Backstage. Deadlines are great motivators. I had the one weekend to finish and that was it. Things will get busier, what with the Italy and Paris trip just around the corner. And I'm wary that the idea I had might just turn into mud as I try to realize it. The window of two days got whittled into one day, then into an afternoon. Actually a handful of hours.
Marker study on a pad of Muji newsprint from Japan
Start already! I had a thumbnail I worked up weeks ago, even before Enrico had the Sketchtravel book. I like it, it should work. Next was to do a rough on tracing paper to work out the composition.
That rough done, it seemed that it could hold together. The meter is running. Oops, we gotta run! We're due at Pixar to welcome our close friends to a Ratatouille screening in the best screening theater in the east bay. The sound in the Pixar theater is just truly amazing. You are forever spoiled for any other theater experience. Well, after leaving our guests there I really should be getting back to my drawing. But, well, you gotta have coffee, right? Off to Peets on Piedmont Avenue.
I used a coffee press for the composition but this coffee urn had so much character, so in it goes
They have a collection of antique percolators and coffee urns. I've taken many photos of these over the years but I don't have time to hunt through my un-tagged photos in my computer. I took a snap of one that catches my eye. Then I was thinking, hey, I'm a little sore from working out last week, when was the last time I had a good steam? We schedule a steam in the early evening--just to relax the anxious drawing brain.
I also collect these large wood block letters, likely used for headlines, and I thought it looked neat and complimented the urn. Seemed like fun, so in it goes.
Back to work. Oh, look at the time. I trace the drawing onto the page. I can't see the page too well, I should go outside to the back patio to draw. Natural light. Okay, now I can draw it for real. Pencils, HB, 4B, 6B. I'm careful not to smudge the page with my hand. Oh, fudge, look at the time. Honey, we gotta go. Time for the steam!
Ahhh, that made me sleepy. It's an hour later. Man, I gotta hustle. The light is dying in the backyard. I watercolor the coffee urn with a round sable and let the colors puddle and dry on their own. Takes time. I run inside to finish coloring.
Then it's a lot of staring at it.
After a great deal of squinting I grab the pastels to unify the whole thing. The focus of the piece is pulling to the left. It has to be all about Nina. That's what the pastels do. I do a lot of retouching the pencils and chase down some smudge I made of touching wet color. It seems to be holding together, but I do the diligence of touching it up here and there. By the time it's time for bed I will have resolved to wait till daylight again next day to truly judge it.
The finished piece in color to be posted tomorrow.