Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Coloured Pencil-Start to Finish Part 3
Linework & Filling it In:
I thought this part would be easy. I'm always hoping the next part will be easy. Hey, it's all laid out, now it's just colouring in, just like you were a kid, right?
I'm first laying in the lines, as I want them to be visible in pure tones right to the finish. This is a style choice, and actually a little unusual as it will make the final image look more like a drawing and less like a painting so keep that in mind if you want to try this yourself.
I start with lemon yellow and very strong as I want this colour to pop out. If I wait until the end, and put lemon on top, it will pick up other colours and smear. Basically, you want to be working from light to dark with coloured pencil because of it's transparency. At the end, I can put light over dark, but it will mix with, not cover over the darker colours. As in watercolour, you'll want to reserve the white areas too. I'm working the entire surface, as I want the entire image to carry the same strength and style. Without a photo reference (though you'll see that I keep my two aceo's handy, and an old forest photo too) I'm feeling my way along. If I work too hard in one area, I may, figuratively and literally 'paint myself into a corner'. Enough lemon and I begin adding other colours.
Eventually, I start to fill in with soft shading to get things moving along. Shading is the thing that will get you towards realism in style, for me it's a shortcut because it's a little faster than laying down a million tangled sketchlines. Someday, I would love to do a piece that was nothing but lines layered to the point of fully burnished colour but, frankly, I just don't have the patience to try that right now.
I'm trying my best to keep things balanced but I have a tendency to work on the lower half. It's physically easier, and psychologically, this is where the action is. I need to balance that out. Turning the whole piece upside down is a great trick. It's not that it just brings this part of the image closer to me, but it forces the eye to view the artwork in it's abstract form.
Next time, I'll show you what happened. Back to the drawing board for me.