Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Quick life drawing

Went to this year´s first life drawing session a few days ago. Funny how fast you forget how to draw the human body if you don´t do it all the time - from the beginning of the session I felt as though I had NEVER drawn a human being before. This is a quick sketch done about an hour into the session, and I was beginning to loosen up a bit, which always makes for better results. I drew mostly with pencil in a big drawing pad, but this little drawing was made in my regular sketchbook, with the Lamy and a waterbrush filled with very diluted Noodler´s ink. I can never squeeze in the whole body on such a small surface, so I just went for the upper half.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

More people

Sat down in a café a few days ago and had a go at drawing some people I saw there. The guys in this drawing are not placed like they were sitting in the café, they just sort of randomly ended up this way on the paper.

11 x 13,5 cm. Lamy Safari in sketchbook, colored with Inktense afterwards.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Drawing at work

Had a long conference today, with a lecture included. It was on an interesting subject, really, but sitting still and listening all day is something that I can´t seem to get away with anymore. I´m used to WORKING at work - you know, being active, running errands, talking to students, lecturing, making lesson plans, and so on. Sitting still for too long makes me all drowsy and sooner or later I begin to drop off. Very embarrassing. So what better thing to keep me awake than a pen and a sketchbook?

This is not really a portrait of the man who gave the lecture (he would not recognize his face in this drawing), but rather a trial to capture the shadows on his face. He had quite an expressive face, and stood right under a lamp while speaking.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

A few days later...

These are the same tulips as in the last post, only a bit faded.I love old tulips, they have a very special ragged beauty about them. This stage doesn´t last very long though, soon after this drawing was done I had to throw them out, the petals were falling off.

I actually got reacquainted with an old dip pen and some India ink for this. It´s been a long time since I used steel nibs, I really enjoy drawing with them. The lines are so much more variable than with any other pens, it´s easier to put some feeling and emphasis into the drawing. Only problem is bringing them with me when I go out to draw. It easily gets a bit messy with a loose bottle of ink, I´m always worried it will leak.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

New colors, no drawing

According to my Art Plan (sounds a bit pompous, doesn´t it? I´ll have to drop the capital letters next time I use it...) I have been practicing some painting without drawing. It is certainly tricky to know where to put the colors down on the paper to get it right, and those leaves are just impossible. I must confess I improvised on them a bit.

Not that I am the slightest bit disappointed in my usual palette, but I had to try the watercolors from Kremer Pigmente after reading about them online. I got them about a week ago and have been playing around with them to see what they are all about. The tulips are made with the Kremers and a flat brush, which gives the painting a slightly different look than my usual stuff. These colors are very different from my ordinary ones, more opaque and have a mind of their own. I kind of like the fact that they don´t behave like I´m used to. They will not replace my usual palette, but they have found a place among my art supplies as a very appreciated and amusing complement.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Art plan in motion

I ran some errands in town yesterday, and had a quick coffee in one of the cafés I passed by. As I sat down, th Good Art Plan Fairy popped up on my left shoulder and whispered:
-You could take the chance to make a quick sketch of some people here, you know. You stated in your Art Plan that drawing people was an important thing to develop this year...

Immediately the Evil Procrastinator emerged on my right shoulder and started to shout:
-No, no, no, you stupid Art Plan Geek! This is a Coffee Break, not a drawing session! You can´t draw and drink coffee at the same time! The Art Plan starts tomorrow!

They started arguing, and I decided to shut them both up by doing one very quick drawing for ten minutes. The Art Plan Fairy looked pleased, and the Procrastinator was at least not angry since it was just a quickie, nothing fancy. They both gracefully faded away as the drawing was finished.

Ink pen on paper, colored afterwards with Inktense pencils and a waterbrush.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Ok, so 2007 has begun, and people are making a lot of New Year´s resolutions everywhere, usually to loose weight and quit smoking. Now, my weight isn´t perfect but I can live with it, and I´ve never smoked, so I won´t bother with those two.
I´ve been more inspired be these folks who (among others, these are just a few) have made a conscious art plan for the new year.

Karen Winters
Casey T

This is a great idea, to actually sit down and put into words what you want to achieve with your art (or whatever it is that you do) and then tell the world about it. The telling part is probably the most important, if you tell a lot of people about your plans you have a bit of pressure to live up to them.

So, for 2007 I have a few thoughts on what I want to do:

1. Start drawing from my imagination again.
I have concentrated a lot on drawing and painting stuff that I see around me lately, and suddenly realized that I almost stopped drawing thoughts, fantasies, abstract ideas and so on. I´m going to play more. Usually these drawings contain people in different forms, which leads me to the next challenge:

2. Draw people.
I´m going to take advantage of the fact that I live a few 100 meters from a place where they have life drawing sessions every two weeks. I need to get better with the human figure, I want to be able to draw a person doing something without necessarily having someone doing it in front of my eyes.

3. Draw cars.
Just because I find it very amusing but incredibly difficult.

4. A series of drawings/paintings with a Stockholm theme.
Be it architecture, people, mere fantasies or whatever - Stockholm is a beautiful and inspiring place.

5. Paint without drawing.
Watercolours are great to work with, yet I think that you can never become a full-fledged expert in this medium. There is always something new to learn. This year it will be to let the paint do the job.

I think that will do. We´ll see how it goes.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Interior in ink

Thought I´d start the new year with an ink drawing I made on Christmas Eve (the day we actually celebrate Christmas in Sweden - Christmas Day if usually more about slacking, watching good movies on TV, eating lovely leftovers from the day before and just feeling cozy with your near and dear ones). After all the celebrating and gift giving and eating, the great Calm entered my in-law´s house, and I sat down and drew this corner of their living room. I entered that "drawing zone", you know, when you just draw and forget everything around you, including time. Wonderful.

The almost horizontal line across the sofa is where I started this drawing. I wanted to get the angles of the room right before adding anything else like furniture and stuff, so I began by drawing this line, the roof line and the corner line between the two walls. Since I usually draw directly in ink I couldn´t get rid of this line afterwards, but I don´t mind. I actually kind of like it when you can see the remains of how a drawing was made.

14.5 x 21.5 cm, Lamy Safari and Noodler´s Ink in a sketchbook.