Tag Archives: line drawing

A Head In 6 Minutes

4 Jul

6 minute head2

Sometimes it’s getting late and I haven’t done any drawing so I look around for something quick to do. I try to draw every day because that’s what underpins my practice as an artist, rather like a singer practicing their scales every day. If I’m stuck, I turn to the Internet and google images of people, choose one and time myself- a strict 6 minutes to scribble a reasonable drawing. I like to choose elders because their faces are so interesting, so expressive. They have history and stories flickering across their faces. I drew this with a graphite stick into my A5 black hardbound sketchbook.

A Lovely Line [female nude]

1 Jun

I had a nice life drawing in my sketchbook and decided to take it a stage further into a fully worked-up drawing and then, eventually, into a full-colour reduction monotype. I stretched a sheet of Bockingford 250gsm and gave it a couple of coats of rabbit skin glue, then washes of acrylic paint in yellow ochre, permanent rose and cerulean blue. That was the easy bit. When I rework a sketchbook piece, I don’t just scale it up, I adapt it to fit the shape of the monotype plate, correct any bad bits in the original and aim to get a lovely line, even if that means altering it.

I’m pretty happy with the linework on this new drawing; there’s a bit to do on the hands and hair still, and then I’ll start working in some highlights and tones into the body and darken the background. So far I’ve just used willow charcoal, but I’ll probably develop the piece now with compressed charcoal and white and transparent oil bars. I’ll do the monotype from a linear tracing, hopefully in the next couple of weeks. It’s taken me two half-days to get this far; I can’t keep it up for a full day because I stop being able to see it and need an overnight break to look at it afresh.

A Lovely Lovely Line

8 Dec

Mixed media: work in progress.

Sometimes when you’re drawing you get into the physical act of it, where you’re not just trying to create an image of something, but you’re also getting into the beauty of the mark. I had one of those moments earlier today when I was working on a large drawing in the studio. This started life as a life drawing in my sketchbook and has been through a couple of incarnations as a direct line monotype and more recently as a large three-colour monotype. I really like the original image so I decided to work it up as a very large drawing which will probably be the basis for a mixed media piece that I’ll work on after Xmas.


I started off with a large piece of Fabriano 350gsm that I’d previously coated with an acrylic ink / medium mixture, applying it randomly with a squeegee. I started to work up the drawing in black and white conté crayons and then went over the black lines with a transparent oil bar. The bar made the conté line semi-liquid and it flowed beautifully. I got right into the physicality of it and when I stood back to look at it, the line wasn’t at all true to nature but nevertheless it’s a gorgeous, sensual, lush line. In my humble opinion. Sometimes that’s enough.



Draw Draw Draw: Feet to the Fore

30 Aug

Ink drawing: My husband's feet.


Call me old-fashioned but I draw almost every day and I make no apologies for that. I believe that drawing underpins visual art and that all artists should draw regularly to constantly improve what we do. Sometimes at the end of a long day I don’t really feel like sketching and it’s more out of duty than anything else and this is when feet come in really handy [see what I did there] as they’re never far away and they stay put, so I have quite a few drawings of my feet …… and my husband’s. It’s good practice because they’re not easy to draw so you get some anatomy and perspective practice as well. These ink drawings are in my sketchbook and they’re drawn using the continuous line technique with Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens.


Ink drawing: my feet.


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