8" x 8", coloured pencil on Arches HP
copyright Katherine Tyrrell
I've been finding it very difficult to reduce to just two value Notan. Although I understand the principles, it would appear my brain does not want to play!
Prior to my recent studies, my habit has been to test out the design of a composition and a crop either using a thumbnail sketch or PS Elements or both.
So, for example, in developing Cactus #4 (still awaiting a name!), I first of all developed a line drawing (see below for images of stages). The next stage was to develop the background leaving the cactus spikes undeveloped. This was supposed to be my equivalent of filling part of the design with one darker tone - but of course I started to develop it a bit by deepening some of the marks on the cactus!
It clearly indicated to me how much the introduction of colour can complicate design and makes me understand why Dow recommends focusing on two values and working in monochrome only to start with. If you look at my drawings of the head you'll see that in representative drawings I have no problem in working in mono and then hatching in lines to get tone.
I've also had problems reducing to just three values in the past and tend to want to blur edges between value shapes.
In developing Two White Irises (and three buds), I first of all developed a thumbnail sketch of the design (see left). This was meant to be a three value sketch but note the blurring........ The problem might be because I don't tend to do a thumbnail so much as use most of a sheet in my A5 sketchbook. Maybe I ought to try working smaller?
I'm going to say a bit more about Dow and three value notan later this week.
A new website gallery for Plants and Cacti.
I'm really rather excited about my cacti even though I know absolutely nothing at all about them - I just love the shapes, patterns and colours!
I've set up a new gallery on my website so they can all my cacti can be seen together. It's accessed via the 'Still Life' gallery and is called Plants and Cacti. I've also been rounding up all the cacti photos I took while travelling and sketching in the southwestern states of the USA last year. It's very exciting, I've got lots of good cacti shots and I find virtually all of them very stimulating - so this could be a big series!
I'd be really interested in what you think about how the four completed to date look together in the gallery.