Down the Rabbit Hole

I wasn't having much of a day drawing at the Palette and Chisel, first in the morning and then in the evening yesterday. I was getting discouraged, so I thought I'd try something different—nothing to lose after all. Then I came up with this drawing using compressed instead of vine charcoal. I was trying to follow Douglas Graves' quick sketch technique for this 15-minute drawing. Unfortunately, it's on the cheapest of newsprint, so it won't last long. One thing I like is the angularity of the model contrasted against the round chair.

I absolutely have to force myself to do the whole drawing lightly at first, then go back and refine it. If I'm not constantly on guard, I “wake up” to catch myself “noodling” a hand or something and I haven't even done the whole lower body. This happens over and over again.

About the rabbit hole: I've been using charcoal ever since I finished Chris Gargan's figure class in June and now that's all I use. I'm definitely the kind of person who when I learn something, I want to drill down deeper and deeper. It's actually a lot of fun to concentrate on one thing. At some point it can be the center that leads to lots of other things. For example, l'm getting back into photography because I enjoyed doing some charcoal drawings based on Garry Winogrand pictures and then realised that I could take my own photos to draw from. So here you have one of the most modern of technologies, a cell phone camera, paired with one of the most primitive, charing a stick to make a drawing tool. It's like adding replay to baseball. Using hi-tech video to determine the outcome of a game based on a ball and stick.


By kencrocker

Fine artist; graphic artist; draughtsman; digital artist

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