Tag Archives: Fabriano paper

Experiments At Pentre Ifan

17 Oct


I spend a couple of days in Pembrokeshire drawing dolmens. I managed to get to 4 sites and did some sketching in the field, not easy as I forgot to take my drawing board so I was drawing on grass or even the stones themselves. I tried out some different techniques. These first two drawings at Pentre Ifan are drawn into my small Khadi handmade paper sketchbook that I had pre-coloured with a dark ink wash sploshed on randomly with a sponge. I drew with my Daler Rowney artist’s oil pastels, using white, pale blue and two tones of green. I filled in the negative spaces with the pastels – the dark stones are the ink-washed paper.

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Pentre Ifan burial chamber, Nevern, Pembrokeshire, Wales



Then I tried experimenting with a piece of Fabriano Accademica paper that I had already drawn on some months ago. I visited St. Paul’s catacombs in Malta last Winter and when I came back, I developed some of my sketches into larger drawings with my home-made walnut ink. I didn’t much care for most of them and I’ve been planning on re-using them and this is my first attempt, drawn with carbon and oil pastels, both by Daler Rowney. I like the idea of overlaying an ancient burial chamber onto an ancient burial site, but I’m not sure what I think of the drawing itself. I’ll sleep on it.

Like Watching Clouds

22 Jun

marbled paper small 4

I carried on doing some intuitive drawing today, using some of the Fabriano paper I marbled last week; the ones I left outside to dry and then forgot about and left out overnight. The papers have been chewed and roughened by snails and it makes the surface more interesting. I stood across the room and squinted a bit and gradually some human shapes started to form. I tentatively drew them with willow charcoal and then, when I was happy with the line, I went over it with carbon and Bideford Black. I darkened some of the areas of marbling with the Biddy Black and finally used a white conte crayon to put in some very small highlights.

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I have always worked from life, strictly observational drawings, even if I embellish them later. This process today is far more like watching clouds and seeing what patterns form in them. I remembered that when I was a small child, I used to do just that, gaze at the clouds for ages and then draw the things I saw on whatever paper was at hand. More often than not it was cut-up brown paper bags from the grocer. My mother couldn’t afford to buy me sketchpads so she’d keep all the brown bags from shopping for me to scribble on. Kids these days would find it hard to scribble on plastic grocery bags.

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