Mixing It Up

This is a half-hour traditional-media pencil and gouache sketch in my 5 x 8 Moleskin, with a little digital finish thrown in. In the original, the model's left arm didn't read right. So for the first time ever, I took a picture of the painting with my iPad camera, imported the image into the Procreate app I use for drawing, and touched up the arm. Okay, the arm's still a little too big (now that we're dissecting), but it does read better now as a complete arm, imho. Here's the original, so you can see if you agree.

I was seeing the line down the middle of his bicep and the dark paint in the gutter between the two pages as the bottom of his arm and then some kind of nothing between that and the beginning of his legs. Once I lightened those two places, I saw that it was all arm and the line was really the edge of the shadow. In the small photo it's hard to see the difference, but I think it did help.
This might be a good time to compare digital versus traditional drawing tools. Although I really like drawing on my iPad, there is no way to get the beautiful spontaneous look and textures that I got so easily in this picture. So to me it's a waste of time to try to digitally emulate traditional painting. The trick is to figure out what kind of beauty is unique to digital art. If there's any traditional process that's similar to digital, I'd say it's etching, where the things to focus on are line quality and mark-making. Just saying…as one of my best teachers always said.


By kencrocker

Fine artist; graphic artist; draughtsman; digital artist

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