woensdag 27 juni 2012

Capturing water

It's not the easiest thing in the world to capture water - and certainly not with coloured pencils! But looking closely at the task at hand reveals that it's more a question of colour than you would expect when you first think of water. It's also, however, a question of leaving colour out, at exactly the right spots, or rather the right ripples, to create a realistic effect. Hence the importance of sticking as close as possible to the shapes you observe as you draw. Only then will the final drawing look like the real thing.

At first it will seem like a mess and will come to nothing, but "patience grasshopper!", "everything comes to he who waits" and all that.

Here I've just started to introduce a few ripples in the surface of the water. In this case it's difficult to know exactly where to leave some white space for light as I'd like to make the water a little more interesting than in the photograph I've taken.

We'll see how I manage this as I go along, so I concentrate on the water surrounding the ripples first and will try to fill in the detail of the movement in the water at a later stage. So, for the moment I just apply some prussian blue and blue grey to roughly mark out the lines and shapes of the surface water.

I can't seem to get to grips with those eddies just yet so after some initial filling in and playing about with various shades of blue, using the same colours as I've been using so far, I give up for the moment.

Yeah, yeah! "Get on with it!", I hear you say. Well, it's all very well for you to talk - you are not staring at a virtually blank sheet of paper faced with the daunting task of filling it with sometimes reflecting, mostly murky water and teeming koi fish! "This needs time to unfold naturally... so don't disturb the process!", she says, trying feebly to disguise her very haphazard method of working!

Anyway, I decide to move on to some bigger fish! Here I lightly sketch in the main lines and shadows using deep chrome, making sure to leave the areas where the light falls white, just for now. This will make things easier! I'll get back to those ripples and reflections when things start falling together a little better. There's a long way to go, but this drawing just might work out.
Koi fish have those very recognisable black patches and spots, so the next step is to fill some of those in, first using mars black and then ivory black for the darker areas.

This sitting has taken 3 hours (7 hrs and 55 mins. in total) and then life interrupts. I hope I get a bit more accomplished next time... but that's another kettle of fish!...

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