De Waag — Amsterdam

Materials:   Handbook Drawing Journal 8.25×5.5in and a Uni Ball 0.1mm Pin.

Thoughts:   While wandering through Teoh Yi Chie’s channel on Youtube i found “Sketching the Waag at Nieuwmarkt square (timelapse tutorial)”.

I really liked the look of the building and had a look at Teoh’s reference photo.   It was quite a small photo and the building was obscured by a fruit & veg market and lots and lots of cars and vans, so i went off to Wikipedia and found this one.

Learned:   Find a picture of the subject that i really like and with tons of pixels to exploit: 3872 x 2592.   Don’t worry if you make a mistake, which i did several times for any amatuer art critics out there who want to practice being picky as fuck while i practice my urban sketching.   While i quite enjoyed drawing with the Uni Ball Pin, i don’t think the 0.1mm is 0.1mm, it’s not even close: i can get finer lines with my 0.5mm Rotring Tikky pencil.

Soooo:   I do need to pay a bit more attention to what i’m doing as i did make some silly mistakes, but for a first go at sketching a building i’m rather happy with it.   I also need to find a better pen for the really fine stuff.   This pen will write quite fine but you have to be really delicate with it to do so, as soon as you allow any pressure at all it starts to get quite thick.

Next:   I have to do a nice mixing chart with my paints, which should give me a little more practice with them.   And then i get to cover my nice picture of De Waag in lots of pretty colours and you’ll all get to see how it turns out.

I’ll be back soon, so don’t go away.   Well, alright then, you can go away, but make sure you come back soon and i’ll see you here.

 
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Arghhhh!!!

I found some lessons on Conté à Paris’ website and decided to have a play.

Materials:   Conté à Paris Black B crayon, Pierre Noire H and Blanc 630 on Pink Pig Sketch Book 150gsm white mixed media cartridge.

Thoughts:   The “Subtractive Drawing” lesson says to use a black pastel pencil to make the paper grey, i didn’t have one so i used the Black B crayon instead.   Need to try this same technique with a black or grey pastel instead and see what the difference is like.

I used the picture from the “Expressive Self Portrait” lesson, which some may think is defeating the object, but my mission wasn’t to do the self portrait lesson, it was to find a challenge that i could apply the subtractive drawing method to and i liked that picture.

Learned:   That i can do a reasonable copy of something.   How to use different erasers for drawing light in.

And:   I definitely plan no coming back to this technique in the future and have some more playtime with it.   It’s a fun way to draw.

In the meanwhile i have another picture on the go which i need to get finished.

 
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Apple

Materials:   Koh i Noor Giaconda Silky Black 2 on Pink Pig Sketch Book 150gsm white mixed media cartridge.

Thoughts:   first drawing using my Cretacolor Ecologic — and also this lead.   Reminds me of being a child again with a big chunky crayon, especially as the Silky Black 2 has a nice waxy feel — and smell — to it.   Fun!

I bought this sketch book years ago with all the good intentions of the world to get back into drawing back then, but alas, life went extremely off the rails for a while and it’s only now that i sit down with it and finally use it.

Learned:   Chunky lead holders are super fun.   You can get very good points and super black lines from these crayon type leads.   I’ve no idea what exactly they’re made of but they’re definitely fun to play with.

 
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Cretacolor Ecologic Lead Holder

My latest acquisition for my drawing.

Lead-holders/clutch-pencils/mechanical-pencils come in all kinds of various materials, widths, lead sizes, lengths, weights, shapes, etc., and to be quite honest it’s all quite overwhelming to a drawing newbie and i really didn’t know where to begin or what i was supposed to be buying.   So, for a starting place, i just decided to buy whatever i liked the look of and when i saw this Cretacolor Ecologic wooden lead-holder, my mind was made up for me.   And i’m not disappointed.   It feels delightful in the hand, like a comfortable chunky crayon used to feel when i was a child.   I really, really like it.

There’s quite a few different leads to buy and try for this size of lead holder made by different companies and i plan to give them all a go eventually. It’s very easy to swap the lead out whenever you want to change so you can manage quite well with just one lead holder while you try out a variety of leads. So current plan is to find what leads i like and eventually buy one of these holders each for all my favourite leads.

The wood is unsealed and also has a nice fit-in-the-hand shape so it doesn’t take any effort at all to keep a good grip and control over it.   There’s an organic-ness to it.   I’m also looking forward to the plain wood taking on a good collection of smudges, marks and paw-prints over the years and developing a nice wabi-sabi aesthetic/patina.

Fun, fun, fun!!!
 

 
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Jug

Materials:   Conté black ‘B’ crayon and blanc 630 pencil.   Paper is Strathmore Toned Gray — yes, i know, i’m off to buy a new light bulb when the shop opens today.

Thoughts:   first time playing with Conté crayon, ever, and i really like it.   Going to buy lots of them and see what may happen.

Learned:   Conté crayon is super fun.   I remember as a child really enjoying playing with crayons, so imagine my surprise and joy when i recently discovered that Conté make crayons for grown ups.   Awesome!
 

 
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Bottle

Materials:   Started with a Derwent Graphic for initial sketch then played around with Conté; Pierre Noire 2B, blanc 630, sanguine, and pastel blue.   Paper is Strathmore Toned Gray.

Thoughts:   i need to sort my light bulb out as the paper is the Toned Gray and looks like Toned Tan in the photo.   Also not sure how i feel about the rough edges from the paper with the Pierre Noire, but i do love the depth of the black in this pencil — Johnny Nice Painter would love ’em.

Learned:   Pierre Noire didn’t sit on the graphite under-drawing, so in future i’ll try a harder Pierre Noir to do the initial sketch and see how that goes.
 

 
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