Commenting on my recent cafe sketches Chris said “How about a focus on feet and shoes for your next post? They drive me mad, and can make or break a quick sketch.” Be careful what you wish for…
Here are all the feet I could sketch in 20 minutes (just the lines, I added the ink wash later) while sat in a cafe near the counter. These are the customers waiting to place their orders, fidgeting impatiently, but holding still just long enough for some serious shoe gazing.
These are different views of a plaster copy of (Michelangelo’s) David’s left foot. Here’s a clay sculpture of a sinewy foot by Sherry.
And finally a selection of feet in Hokusai’s manga; lots of sandals and strong calf muscles!
Lexington grey in fountain pen and water-brush, watercolour, A5 – a few minutes for each foot/shoe?
Posted in brush pen, cafe, coloured paper, Feet, from life, Lexington grey, line drawing, monochrome, objects, sculpture, sketching, urban
Tagged cafe sketching, collection of feet, drawing feet, fountain pen sketch, Hokusai manga, ink sketches, Michelangelo's David, Ride, sketching sculpture, sketching shoes, urban sketching
Posted in animals, coloured ink, figures, Japan, journeys, sculpture, urban
Tagged bullet train sketch, fountain pen sketches, Fushimi Inari-taisha, Iggy Pop, inari, Japanese shrines, Kyoto sketches, sketching in Japan, torii avenue, urban sketching, very fast sketches of people
More late night monochrome sketches, this time corners of the kitchen. In the first sketch I was drawn to the way that strong overhead light made shadows wrap around the apples. In the second one it was the tilted ellipses in the collection of bottles and jars. Working without colour I take more care over line, tone and shade; it’s all there is!
Lexington grey in fountain pen and water-brush, white gouache, A5 – 25 minutes
Posted in coloured paper, from life, fruit, grisaille, kitchen, Lexington grey, line drawing, monochrome, objects
Tagged domestic scenes, drawing ellipses, drawing jars and bottles, drawing shadows, fruit sketch, kitchen sketches, line and tone, monochrome sketching, overhead light, Peter Gabriel, sketching with fountain pen
Posted in Bath, cafe, clothing, coloured ink, coloured paper, figures, from life, Istanbul, Lexington grey, line drawing, marker pen, monochrome, people, urban, waiting
Tagged Bath cafes, cafe sketching, drawing shoes, fountain pen sketches, Hafiz Mustafa, marker pen sketch, Rolling Stones, sketching people, sketching seated people, urban sketching
More cars parked up on Bath streets. I didn’t use the acetate grid for these, but did have to work hard to get the relative size of the receding cars correct, to see what was there and not what I thought I could see. In the first picture I’m looking down the hill, but the cars still rise up the page! Here’s a short article about ways of seeing.
Lexington grey in fountain pen and water-brush, watercolour, A5 – 30 minutes each
Posted in Bath, cars, from life, Lexington grey, line drawing, sketching, street scene, urban, vehicles
Tagged Bath street sketch, drawing a street scene, drawing of line of cars, drawing what you see, fountain pen sketch, Public Enemy, receding cars, relative size, sketching cars, urban sketching
Chimney pots and windows at the back of Camden Road in Bath, sketched from the road above, while leaning on a high wall (in the foreground bottom left). It’s another view of Bath where the chaotic backs of the buildings are more interesting than the neater fronts. As in a previous post I’ve included the original fountain pen drawing (which I had to stop when rain started) with the initial pencil grid guidelines established using an acetate grid. Then the intermediate grisaille version where I added a Lexington grey ink wash for the main shading. The acetate grid was useful in getting the complicated perspective and proportions right, establishing a sound skeleton for the rest of the sketch.
Pencil, Lexington grey in fountain pen and water-brush, water-colour, A5 – 1 hour
And here’s a lovely loose water-colour sketch by Rowena, who emailed me about ways to get composition right in a landscape sketch. I suggested using some kind of acetate grid, she made one out of the top of Christmas cracker box, and this is her excellent first attempt at an outdoor scene! The eye is drawn down the path, but also out into the sunlit grass.
Posted in Bath, buildings, cars, from life, grisaille, Lexington grey, line drawing, street scene, technique, urban
Tagged acetate grid, Bath, Camden Road, chimney pots, composition of sketch, Fatboy Slim, fountain pen sketch, grisaille, rear windows, rooftop sketch, street scene, urban sketching, using a grid when sketching
A bus queue lined up alongside Bath Abbey, and more tourists sat on benches (previously, and here). Drawing directly with ink means ‘mistakes’ are visible, recording the process of feeling out where the lines need to go. Usually I just restate the line, adding a more accurate or expressive one, but this doesn’t work on faces, and sometimes it’s better to start again. Which is why there’s a ghost sat to the left of the first bench. I had another go, and failed better.
Lexington grey in fountain pen and water-brush, watercolour, A5 – various times
Posted in Bath, body, buildings, figures, from life, inks, Lexington grey, line drawing, monochrome, people, street scene, technique, urban, waiting
Tagged Bath Abbey, Bath tourists, bus queue, couple on bench, Fail better, fountain pen drawings, mistakes in drawings, people on benches, restating lines, sketches of people in town, The Byrds, urban sketching