Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Art of a Sketchbook - Friday

Mug Shots from my sketchbooks ....

Seems like everyone is into Mug Shots lately.  So my way of participating is to share a few sketches of my mugs from my sketchbooks.  Sketching my coffee mugs is something I've always done and I'm sure its because there is always one near me.
Mug #1... a very feminine with dainty flowers on the octagon shaped mug.  
A fine strip of gold on the handle

Same as mug #1 ... this was just tiny in my sketchbook, about an inch high.

Mug #3 was a hand made mug.  I used it for years and just
recently passed it along to a friend and neighbor.

Mug #4 is the same as mug #5.  Odd shaped but it was a favorite for years.

Mug #5, Red mug.

Mug #6 ... these are not my mugs / cups.  They were in a 
magazine andI thought they needed to be sketched. 

There you have it ... 6 mug shots from one sketchbook.
There are more in other sketchbooks but this is enough mugs for one day I think.

Have a great Easter week-end.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Art of a Sketchbook

Assorted bottles & jars on my desk, 6" x 9" sketchbook, ©2013 Nancy Van Blaricom
These are a few bottles and a jar that were on my desk the morning of August 30th, 2012

An assortment of my sketchbooks on the left & on the right some of my books on drawing.


Today while out shopping I picked up a Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine.  It is a delightful issue with a couple of items on drawing.  I thought I'd share this page from the magazine ...

To draw does not mean simply to reproduce contours: drawing does not consist merely of line: drawing is also expression, the inner form, the plane, modeling.  
See what remains after that.
- Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (1780 - 1867)

Also in this same issue there is a four page article on Juliette Aristides & Sherrie McGraw. 

Both are fabulous artists and I'm thrilled to own both Sherrie McGraw's book The Language of Drawing as well as Juliette Aristrides book titled Lessons in Classical Drawing.

I hope you have a wonderful week-end and get out and do some sketching or drawing.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Studying Composition & Design ....

"In art, the terms design and composition are nearly synonymous.  By definition, design means to invent or conceive. Composition refers to the placement of forms, shapes, values and colors within a picture.  The distinction between the two terms is that design is the act, and composition is the result.  In short, you create a composition through the act of designing." ~ North Light 

Remember me telling you how I thought I should be focusing my attention on becoming a better artist?  Since writing that blog post I have been examining composition and design and I must say I'm really enjoying the research.

Some years ago I had done some reading about composition but I don't think a lot of it stayed with me.  What did stay with me I didn't consciously apply to any of my work ... if it was used it was more than likely not on purpose.  

McLane Cove, 5" x 7" oil on gessoed watercolor paper,
© 2013 Nancy Van Blaricom

In my painting above I purposely tried to direct your attention to what I felt was the center of interest.  I have some strong diagonals that draw you into the picture plane. At the same time encompass  your interest by focusing on the significance of the clouds and the sky.

I like this painting much better in real life.   I seem to have trouble getting my whites and blues to photograph well.  And photoshop doesn't seem to help much.
  • Do you consciously apply your design knowledge to your work 
  • Or is it second nature to you now?  
  • What about thumbnails ... do you try out a couple of different scenarios in pencil before you commit to a design?

Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Art of a Sketchbook - Friday

:: Ellipse Studies ::

An ellipse is so difficult for me to draw and because of that you'll often see ellipse studies in my sketchbooks.  I usually have a cup of coffee around and it seems to call out to me to sketch the cup.

This photo above was a study .... I think I failed at this attempt.  I can't remember what book I was reading that suggested all these angle studies.

I was much more pleased with this study. Even then I'm not sure how much work like this I would be willing to do prior to putting the image of a cup on  my support.

I apologize for the poor quality of these photos.  I found that when sketching ellipses I tend to sketch lightly ... thinking I might be easier to erase I guess, but, I don't erase in my sketchbooks, so I'm not sure why I sketch ellipses so lightly.

Do you use your sketchbook to study how to draw some particular item?  Noses, faces, cups or maybe trees?  

Sunday, March 10, 2013

The Art of a Sketchbook - Friday, or maybe Sunday?

Eye, aprox. 2" x 2" sketch on scrap paper, ©2013, Nancy Van Blaricom

I (eye) have been away and neglected to schedule last Friday's The Art of a Sketchbook - Friday.  I'm back now and promise to show up for next Friday's regular sketch blog entry.

Until then keep on sketching.